Administrator Guzman highlights new direct forgiveness portal and other innovations as critical to accelerating reviews and approvals
The U.S. Small Business Administration reached a major milestone Wednesday, as its Paycheck Protection Program direct borrower forgiveness portal recorded its one millionth PPP loan forgiveness application for borrowers seeking forgiveness for loans of $150,000 or less.
“We are committed to delivering against the promise of forgiveness for our eligible PPP borrowers. Our innovative direct forgiveness portal is helping our PPP borrowers get back to doing what they do best – creating jobs and powering our nation’s economy,” SBA Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman said. “With over 1 million application submissions, our direct forgiveness portal has already given so many of our smallest businesses the ability to apply for forgiveness quickly and smoothly and move forward with their rebuilding and recovery. I encourage those eligible PPP borrowers who have yet to apply to visit SBA.gov or contact their lender today.”
Since the portal’s launch on Aug. 4, the SBA has received applications for over $17 billion of relief from more than 1 million of America’s smallest businesses – the SBA said, “furthering President (Joe) Biden’s commitment to equity across the U.S. government.”
It added, “In fewer than 45 days, 91% of all loans eligible for direct forgiveness in the 2020 PPP portfolio have been submitted, showcasing the SBA’s efficiency in delivering relief to entrepreneurs who suffered during the height of the pandemic. Furthermore, the number of direct forgiveness participating lenders has more than doubled from 600 when the portal opened, to over 1,400 today.
“In addition, significant progress has been made on the 2021 PPP loans, with 65% of all loans eligible for direct forgiveness already submitted. The SBA has also been able to streamline the process for those not eligible for direct forgiveness using the COVID Health score, which eliminates the need for overwhelming paperwork to be provided to lenders, and serve over 600,000 borrowers to date.
“With the introduction of the new PPP direct forgiveness portal, the SBA has streamlined application processes in order to recenter the user experience around small business owners – a priority of Administrator Guzman. Today, a borrower of a participating lender can now complete most or all of a forgiveness application using a computer or, for the first time, their smartphone. On average, users are able to complete and submit directly to the SBA their applications in just six minutes, and most receive their forgiveness decisions within a week from the date of submission.”
Eligible interested borrowers can access the portal from the SBA website https://directforgiveness.sba.gov. Borrowers who need assistance with their forgiveness applications or have questions can contact the PPP customer service team by calling 877-552-2692 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET weekdays.
Borrowers whose loans are through banks that have chosen not to opt-in to the SBA’s direct forgiveness portal must apply through their lender for forgiveness.