Under the leadership of Governor JB Pritzker, DCEO and the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) are establishing the Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund to offer small businesses low interest loans of up to $50,000.
Businesses located outside of the City of Chicago with fewer than 50 workers and less than $3 million in revenue in 2019 will be eligible to apply. Successful applicants will pay nothing for six months and will then begin making fixed payments at a below market interest rate for the remainder of a five-year loan term.
Loan funds must be used for working capital, and at least 50% of loans proceeds must be applied toward payroll or other eligible compensation including salaries, wages, tips, paid leave, and group healthcare benefits. Eligible uses will exclude compensation in excess of $100,000.
- Term and Interest Rate: Emergency Loan offered as five-year term loan at 3% annual interest, simple. Payments are deferred for six months, and fixed principal and interest payments will be due after initial deferral. Loan may be repaid early without penalty.
- Loan Amount: Borrowers may receive up to $50,000, with borrower loan amounts determined by average monthly revenues prior to COVID-19.
- Loan Uses: Loan funds must be used for working capital, and at least 50% of loan proceeds must be applied toward payroll or other eligible compensation, with a commitment to hire or retain at least 50% of a business workforce for six months.
- Businesses must have received less than $3 million in gross revenue in 2019 and employ fewer than 50 employees. Employee threshold will be based on average employment over the period of October 2019 to December 2019. Seasonal businesses may base employment on average from January 2019 to December 2019.
- Business has experienced at least a 25% decrease in revenues as a result of COVID-19.
- Business must be located in Illinois and provide proof of an Illinois business address and valid business license from an Illinois jurisdiction. Business have been in operations for at least one year.
- Please ensure ability to provide bank statements dating back to October 2019 and most recent tax returns.
- At this time, non-profits and farm business that would traditionally qualify under the USDA’s farm loan program are not eligible.
- A complete list of eligibility requirements and terms is available here.
How to Apply
DCEO is partnering with multiple lenders to provide access to the Small Business Emergency Loan Fund throughout the state.
DCEO and our lending partners are continuing to review the large number of submitted loan applications we have received. To allow us to process received applications as quickly as possible, we are temporarily suspending the acceptance of applications from businesses.
Please refer back to the DCEO website and follow us on social media, and subscribe to our newsletter here to stay updated on upcoming opportunities.
Frequently Asked Questions
What can loan funds be used for?
Loans can be used to support working capital, and at least 50% of loan proceeds should be applied toward payroll or other eligible compensation, with a commitment to hire or retain at least 50% of a business workforce for six months. Eligible compensation includes salaries, wages, tips, paid leave, and group healthcare benefits. Eligible uses will exclude compensation in excess of $100,000.
How do businesses apply?
Businesses will apply directly with local lenders. Business that complete the expression of interest form on this web page will be contacted by lenders beginning April 1.
How much money is available?
Businesses can receive up a low interest loan of up to $50,000 with a five year repayment period with no payments due for the first six months.
How soon will businesses receive funds?
We expect high demand for this program, and once submitted, it will take time to process your application and receive a response. Lenders are reviewing applications as quickly as possible, and we are working to add additional lenders to the program. Please continue to check the DCEO website for an up to date listing of lenders and available programs.