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Fact Sheet: Military Economic Injury Loans

(NOTE: This program applies to military conflicts occurring or ending on or after March 24, 1999)

The purpose of the Military Reservist Economic Injury Disaster Loan program (MREIDL) is to provide funds to eligible small businesses to meet its ordinary and necessary operating expenses that it could have met, but is unable to meet, because an essential employee was "called-up" to active duty in their role as a military reservist.

These loans are intended only to provide the amount of working capital needed by a small business to pay its necessary obligations as they mature until operations return to normal after the essential employee is released from active military duty. The purpose of these loans is not to cover lost income or lost profits. MREIDL funds cannot be used to take the place of regular commercial debt, to refinance long-term debt or to expand the business.

Federal law requires SBA to determine whether credit in an amount needed to accomplish full recovery is available from non-government sources without creating an undue financial hardship to the applicant. The law calls this credit available elsewhere. Generally, SBA determines that over 90% of disaster loan applicants do not have sufficient financial resources to recover without the assistance of the federal government. Because the Military Reservist economic injury loans are taxpayer subsidized, Congress intended that applicants with the financial capacity to fund their own recovery should do so and therefore are not eligible for MREIDL assistance.

Filing Period

The filing period for small businesses to apply for economic injury loan assistance begins on the date the essential employee is ordered to active duty and ends 1 year after the essential employee is discharged or released from active duty.

Credit Requirements

SBA's assistance is in the form of loans, as such SBA must have a reasonable assurance that such loans can and will be repaid.

Collateral Requirements

Collateral is required for all MREIDLs over $50,000. SBA takes real estate as collateral when it is available. SBA will not decline a loan for lack of collateral, but SBA will require the borrower to pledge collateral that is available.

Interest Rate

The interest rate is 4.000%.

Loan Term

The law authorizes loan terms up to a maximum of 30 years. SBA determines the term of each loan in accordance with the borrower's ability to repay. Based on the financial circumstances of each borrower, SBA determines an appropriate installment payment amount, which in turn determines the actual term.

Loan Amount Limit

The actual amount of each loan, up to this maximum, is limited to the actual economic injury as calculated by SBA, not compensated by business interruption insurance or otherwise, and beyond the ability of the business and/or its owners to provide. If a business is a major source of employment, SBA has authority to waive the $2,000,000 statutory limit.

Insurance Requirements

To protect each borrower and the agency, SBA requires borrowers to obtain and maintain appropriate insurance. Borrowers of all secured loans (over $50,000) must purchase and maintain hazard insurance for the life of the loan on the collateral property. By law, borrowers whose collateral property is located in a special flood hazard area must also purchase and maintain flood insurance for the full insurable value of the property for the life of the loan.

Application Information

Businesses may apply directly to the SBA for possible assistance. SBA will send an inspector to estimate the cost of your damage once you have completed and returned your loan application.

SBA now offers you the option of filing your business disaster loan application electronically. Downloadable application forms are available at: Apply for Assistance.

For additional information, please contact our Customer Service Center. Call 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or e-mail disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.