COVID-19 Resources


The section is devoted to business-related topics with an emphasis on the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“the CARES Act” or “the Act”). It authorizes more than $2 trillion to battle COVID-19 and its economic effects, including immediate cash relief for individual citizens, loan programs for small businesses, support for hospitals and other medical providers, and various types of financial assistance for impacted businesses and industries.

Gusto COVID-19 small business resource hub

Gusto is a digital platform that bills itself as the all-in-one people platform for payroll, benefits, and human resources.

Small businesses are facing unprecedented challenges amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Gusto created this resource hub to help you get the most updated news, information, and advice as you navigate this difficult time. This resource hub is a comprehensive resource should you need help navigating economic resources available to freelancers.

Visit Gusto COVID-19 Small Business Resource Hub

Pritzker Details How to File For Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Benefits

Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced that the state of Illinois will now begin processing claims for independent contractors and gig workers. 

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Unemployment Benefits Now Open to Freelancers

The Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program has expanded unemployment benefits to include individuals who don’t normally qualify for the benefit — self-employed, independent contractors, freelancers and gig workers.

This can provide a nice sigh of relief for many in our industry to help them out at this time. 

Read Article · Which types of coronavirus relief can my small business get?

Small business owners, help is on the way—though the process of applying for funding may not be smooth. There are now several new temporary relief options aimed at helping small businesses push through the current economic headwinds caused by the coronavirus.

For instance, nearly $350 billion has been earmarked through the new Paycheck Protection Program to provide financial assistance to small business owners affected by the COVID-19 crisis (This appropriation as of April 19 has been exhausted Congress is in the process of legislating additional funding). But the program experienced hiccups in its first few days, and it’s worth looking into additional options you may be eligible for, too.

Here’s what you need to know if you’re a small business owner looking for help.

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Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

The Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) authorizes up to $349 billion in forgivable loans to small businesses to pay their employees during the COVID-19 crisis. It’s designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll as well as the owner.

The Small Business Association (SBA) will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities.

The loan will be fully forgiven if the funds are used for payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities (due to likely high subscription, at least 75% of the forgiven amount must have been used for payroll). Loan payments will also be deferred for six months. No collateral or personal guarantees are required. Neither the government nor lenders will charge small businesses any fees.

Forgiveness is based on the employer maintaining or quickly rehiring employees and maintaining salary levels. Forgiveness will be reduced if full-time headcount declines, or if salaries and wages decrease. This loan has a maturity of 2 years and an interest rate of 1%.

You can apply through any existing SBA lender or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating. Please consult with your local lender as to whether it is participating.

Here's a list of additional resources to learn more about the program:

Download: Paycheck-Protection-Program-Application-3-30-2020-v3.pdf · Photo assignments postponed – take these 6 steps now to protect yourself

Therese Gietler is the executive producer at Andy Batt Studio, and she is the founder and lead producer at Ask A Producer, a production company for photographers and directors. In this blog post dates March 17, 2020, she highlights the important concepts to understand when asked by a client, “what will it cost to cancel”? And the answer can is found in your terms and conditions (T&C). The post also includes an amendment (PDF) you can add to your production contract for extra protection.

Read the blog post · Small business guidance & loan resources

The U.S. Small Business Administration has a dedicated webpage that provides guidance and information regarding loan resources, including:

  • Coronavirus Funding Options
  • Guidance for Businesses and Employers
  • Local Assistance
  • Join the SBA's Relief Efforts
  • SBA Products and Resources
  • Government Contracting

Visit The U.S. Small Business Administration for more information.

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