3/20/20 Follow-Up: Important Update for NYC Small Businesses Affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic.

March 20, 2020
Follow-Up: Important Update for NYC Small Businesses Affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic.



Dear Current & Former VOLS Microenterprise Project Clients:
 
            We are following up on our email on March 12, 2020 to provide you with additional new resources that may be of use to you as your business responds to the developing COVID-19 outbreak. 
 
             As we noted in our previous communication, Mayor de Blasio and the Department of Small Business Services (SBS) announced that the City will be implementing a financial assistance program for small businesses experiencing revenue decreases as a result of the pandemic. For more information about eligibility for the New York City financial assistance program and to sign up to be notified by SBS when applications for the program open, click the button below:

 




SBS' Financial Assistance for Small Businesses Affected by the Coronavirus (COVID-19)

             In addition, since our last communication, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced that the federal government will be providing financial assistance in the form of low-interest loans to small businesses afflicted by the pandemic in designated states, including New York. The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program offers the following benefits:

  • A loan of up to $2 million, with an interest rate of 3.75% for small businesses and 2.5% for non-profit organizations;
  • Long-term repayment plans of up to 30 years (established on a case-by-case basis); and
  • The loan may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that cannot be paid as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

           If you are interested in learning more about SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program or for additional guidance from SBA, click the buttons below:

SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program
SBA's Coronavirus (COVID-19) Small Business Guidance & Loan Resources
            Moreover, since our March 12th email, the State of New York has passed an emergency paid sick leave law, which small businesses should consider in addition to the New York City sick leave laws we addressed in our previous communication. The following are general guidelines about the emergency law:
  • For employers with 10 or fewer employees (and a net annual income of less than $1 million), employees are entitled to unpaid sick leave for the duration of any quarantine or isolation order, and they may apply for special temporary disability insurance and paid family leave benefits.
  • For employers with 11-99 employees (and employers with 10 or fewer employees having a net annual income greater than $1 million), employees are entitled to 5 days of paid sick leave and unpaid sick leave for the remainder of any quarantine or isolation order, and they may apply for special temporary disability insurance and paid family leave benefits.
  • For employers with 100 or more employees, employees are entitled to 14 days of paid sick leave.

           The New York emergency paid sick leave law is effective immediately, and applies to all employees regardless of how long they have been employed by the employer. For more information about the emergency law, click the button below:

New York State's Emergency Coronavirus (COVID-19) Paid Sick Leave Law

            In addition to the above resources, both SBS and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have issued guidance for small businesses during the period of the pandemic. These resources provide important information for small business owners responding to the pandemic, and we encourage you to utilize them by clicking the buttons below:

SBS' Updated Guidance for Small Business Owners Responding to the Coronavirus (COVID-19 )
CDC's Interim Guidance for Small Business Owners Responding to the Coronavirus (COVID-19)

            We are mindful of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on small businesses, and we will follow up shortly with a survey for current and former clients to identify the most pressing legal issues that need attention at this time.  We would appreciate your participation in the survey and will share a link with you next week as soon as it is available.
 
Sincerely,
 
Arthur Kats, Director & the Microenterprise Project Team