It can get confusing with all of the terms and acronyms being used. While both loans are authorized by Section 7(a) of the Small Business Act (as amended by the CARES Act) and are meant to help businesses hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic, an EIDL is not the same as a PPP loan in many key areas. One of the biggest differences is that, under certain conditions, some (or all) of the PPP loan IS forgivable while EIDLs are not forgivable (although eligible applicants for an EIDL can receive a $10,000 emergency grant within three days of application).
The amount of a PPP loan that is forgivable may not be comprised of more than 25% of non-payroll (but otherwise qualifying) costs. Such costs would include certain qualifying payments for rent, utilities, and mortgage interest. The amount that is eligible for forgiveness is generally reduced if the employer reduces headcount or reduces an employee’s total salary or wages. EIDLs have no such provisions for forgiveness.
Other differences between EIDL and PPP loans: PPP loans are primarily meant to help businesses with "payroll costs," which include certain wages, benefits, and state and local taxes, as well as to help with payments on mortgage interest, rent, utilities, and interest on pre-existing loans. EIDLs, on the other hand, are meant to provide working capital and can be used to pay fixed debts, accounts payable, and other similar bills, as well as the items covered under PPP loans.
Their covered periods and loan caps are different as well. COVID-19 EIDLs are available for economic injuries that occurred between January 31, 2020 and December 31, 2020 and are capped at $2,000,000, while PPP loans only cover costs incurred from February 15, 2020 through June 30, 2020 and are capped at the lesser of 2.5 times the average monthly total of "payroll costs" or $10,000,000.
So, what happens if you need a PPP loan but have already received an EIDL? If you received an EIDL loan between January 31, 2020 and April 3, 2020, you can still apply for and receive a PPP loan. To prevent “double dipping,” EIDL funds cannot be used for "payroll costs" or other PPP allowable uses if you want to qualify for both. HOWEVER, even if you used some of the EIDL's funds for PPP purposes, you may still be able to "refinance" those amounts into the PPP loan during the application process and then be able to seek forgiveness on certain of the PPP loan proceeds (because the qualifying costs incurred during the life of the EIDL would now relate to a PPP loan versus an EIDL).