COVID Relief Archive

Contact Us

February 21, 2021 | New PPP funding announced. Applications will be limited to businesses with fewer than 20 employees.

With the recent announcement of a third round of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funding, United will be offering the opportunity to apply for a First or Second Draw PPP loan. 

This time, there are additional requirements for participation. Please be sure to review the qualifications prior to application. As a reminder, United PPP borrowers will not complete a paper application, instead, you will complete your application entirely within the United Cares Portal.

The Biden-Harris administration announced several reforms to this round of PPP applications and funding with the intention of making funds more easily-accessible to organizations with fewer than 20 employees, sole proprietors, independent contractors and self-employed individuals. Click here for information from the SBA on the changes enacted this time around. 

Visit the SBA Website

January 26, 2021 | Second Wave PPP Loans

The $900 billion Economic Aid Act includes $284 billion for a second round of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). From additional funding, new options for Second Draw PPP loans, a simplified forgiveness process and changes to EIDL advance deductions, there are a lot of changes to the PPP program. You can track updates here and on the SBA’s PPP website.

Borrowers certifying that the loan is “necessary for the continued operation of the business” are generally eligible to apply for a PPP loan if they have:

  • 300 or fewer employees per location

  • Used the full amount of the First Draw PPP Loan on eligible expenses under the PPP rules
  • Sustained at least a 25% reduction in gross receipts in any quarter of 2020 relative to the same quarter in 2019

Other program changes include:

  • This round of PPP is available until March 31, 2021 or when funds are no longer available.
  • A $2 million maximum loan amount has been established.
  • Most borrowers will apply for a Second Draw PPP loan of 2.5x of average monthly 2019 or 2020 payroll. However, restaurant and hospitality businesses (NAICS code beginning with 72) may apply for a Second Draw PPP loan of 3.5x average monthly 2019 or 2020 payroll.
  • Seasonal borrowers may use any 12-week lookback period to determine payroll.
  • Streamlined SBA application processing for loans under $150,000
  • EIDL advances cannot be reduced from PPP Loan Forgiveness. If you’ve already received forgiveness with the EIDL advance amount reduced from the forgiveness amount, you do not need to take any action. The SBA has stated you will be made whole. Further communication will be sent to impacted borrowers at a later date.
  • Businesses may deduct expenses covered by forgiven PPP loan proceeds on their taxes, superseding previous IRS guidance.
  • Click here to learn more from the SBA about the Paycheck Protection Program.

December 1 Update | SBA Releases PPP Loan Data

On December 1 the SBA released additional PPP borrower information following a federal judge’s order to comply with the Freedom of Information Act. This means that the information you provided at the time of application, including but not limited to name, address, loan amount, employee count and other demographic information, is available to the public through the SBA's website.

We recognize the sensitivity you may have around having your loan data made public by the SBA. While United Community Bank was not responsible in any way for this data release, we hope to help your business navigate any challenges that this development may cause. As we mentioned on our PPP WebEx in May, we anticipated this could be the case. During that WebEx, we shared some things to keep in mind if you receive inquiries about your PPP loan.

Quick tips from the WebEx

  • Remember, the program is called the Paycheck Protection Program. How many people were you were able to keep employed as a result of these funds? Keeping people employed helps keep the economic engines of our communities running. 
  • Small businesses are the backbone of our nation's economy. These funds were a lifeline to stabilize small businesses during a time of crisis.
  • Applying for the PPP loan and taking the steps needed to keep your doors open is a service to your employees, your vendors and your customers.

View the SBA's Public PPP Data       Listen to the Webinar


November 18 Update | PPP Revenue Ruling and Deductibility of Expenses

On Wednesday, November 18, the IRS and the U.S. Treasury Department recently issued rulings clarifying the deductibility of expenses where a business received a PPP loan, but the loan has not been forgiven by the end of 2020. According to the Treasury, “since businesses are not taxed on the proceeds of a forgiven PPP loan, the expenses are not deductible. This results in neither a tax benefit nor tax harm since the taxpayer has not paid anything out of pocket.”

Read the Revenue Ruling     Read the Revenue Procedure


October 8 Update | Awaiting Forgiveness Guidance

On Thursday, October 8, the SBA and Treasury Department announced a streamlined forgiveness application process for PPP loans under $50,000. This is welcome news to the thousands of PPP loan customers that will benefit from a simpler forgiveness process. Secretary of Treasury Mnuchin stated, “We are committed to making the PPP forgiveness process as simple as possible while also protecting against fraud and misuse of funds. We continue to favor additional legislation to further simplify the forgiveness process.” Click here to read the press release. 

The SBA issued IFR #25, Additional Revisions to Loan Forgiveness and Loan Review Procedures, which outlines the forgiveness process for loans of $50,000 or less. It also outlines our responsibilities regarding the review of your forgiveness documentation, particularly expenses submitted that are in excess of your PPP loan amount. The new, two-page application will soon be electronically available for United Community Bank PPP loan customers in the UCBI CARES Portal. Please note: United will not accept the SBA formatted application therefore customers should not complete and submit the paper version of the application. The application is available to view here for your convenience.

Read IFR #25          Read the Press Release


July 27 Update | Awaiting Forgiveness Guidance

Congress continues to evaluate the PPP loan forgiveness process, including the forgiveness of debt for loans under $150,000. Secretary of the Treasury Mnuchin has twice told lawmakers they should consider forgiveness of “small loans.” In the meantime, the SBA issued procedures that financial institutions (Lenders) will use to submit loan forgiveness applications. According to the SBA, they will be ready to begin accepting forgiveness applications from Lenders in mid-August. The procedures confirmed that borrowers must submit the completed application through their Lender. 

We developed an online PPP loan forgiveness tool where United PPP borrowers will input forgivable expenses. Since PPP loan borrowers are fully responsible for detailing the use of their PPP loan proceeds, this tool will guide you through that process. Click here for a guide on PPP loan forgiveness terminology.

Legislation Details


June 7 Update | Paycheck Protection Flexibility Act

On June 5, 2020, the president signed the Paycheck Protection Flexibility Act into law. The new legislation makes PPP loans more flexible for borrowers. Among other changes, the new Act extends the time for borrowers to use the loan-- and still be forgiven-- from 8 weeks to 24 weeks. It also, and reduces the amount of the loan that must be used for payroll costs from 75% to 60%. For a detailed overview of the changes to the program and how this will impact your PPP loan forgiveness, click here

Legislation Details

June 3 Update | Congress Passes Legislation

On May 28, the House of Representatives passed the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act (H.R. 7010), and the Senate followed suit on June 3, 2020. The president is expected to sign it into law in coming days. We are closely following the progress of this legislation and will provide updates as they become available. Read the details of the proposed legislation here

Once we have clarity on the final PPP loan forgiveness rules, we will be prepared to work with United’s PPP loan borrowers to begin the forgiveness application process. In the meantime, click here for some steps you can take to prepare for the forgiveness process. 

Legislation Details

May 15 Update | Loan Forgiveness Application

On May 15, 2020, the Small Business Administration (SBA) released the application for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan forgiveness. We are still waiting for the final guidance to determine next steps, but in the meantime click here to read the SBA’s press release to better understand what will be required.

Note: United’s PPP borrowers will not be submitting the SBA’s version of PPP Loan Forgiveness Application or any of the forms and schedules associated with it. Therefore, if you have your PPP loan with us, we ask that you do not submit this form, whether by email or other means, to your banker. Instead, you will be emailed a link to a secure portal to complete the loan forgiveness application process.2

Loan Forgiveness Details


May 13 Update | Treasury guidance for loans less than $2 million

The Treasury released new guidance regarding the review of PPP borrowers’ required good-faith certification. According to this new information, “any borrower that, together with its affiliates, received PPP loans with an original principal amount of less than $2 million will be deemed to have made the required certification concerning the necessity of the loan request in good faith.” 

This provides a safe harbor for borrowers with PPP loans less than $2 million since their good-faith certification will not be reviewed. 

The SBA also extended the deadline to the safe harbor for businesses that have access to other sources of capital to repay their PPP loans. Borrowers that repay the loan in full by Monday, May 18, 2020, will be deemed by the SBA to have made the required certification of economic need in good faith.

Click here to read Treasury’s answers in their entirety (see question 46 and 46) along with other frequently asked questions about PPP loans. 

View Treasury FAQs


May 5 Update | PPP Loan Update Panel Discussion

Lynn Harton, Chairman and CEO of United Community Bank, led a panel discussion on Tuesday, May 5, with Brad Rustin (Partner with Nelson Mullins), Rich Bradshaw (Chief Banking Officer, United Community Bank) and Marion Crawford (Chief Marketing Officer, United Community Bank). All comments made during the webinar were current as of May 5, but some details may have changed since.1

Listen on Demand       Webinar Recap


1 Legal Disclaimer: These programs were created to provide an overview of certain aspects of the PPP program. The information provided does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information is for general informational purposes only. Information contained herein is subject to change and may not constitute the most up-to-date information. It is recommended that you contact your legal advisor to obtain advice with respect to any particular legal matter, and you should not act or refrain from acting on the basis of information contained herein without first seeking advice from your attorney. Only your individual legal advisor can provide assurances that the information contained herein – and your interpretation of it – is applicable or appropriate to your particular situation. All liability with respect to actions taken or not taken based on the contents hereof are hereby expressly disclaimed. The content herein is provided "as is;" no representations are made that the content is error-free.


United Community Bank will not pay fees to or otherwise compensate anyone acting as an agent of the business for advising on or assisting in the preparation of the Paycheck Protection Program loan application, forgiveness application or otherwise.

The information provided is accurate and updated as of November 24, 2020. Terms and conditions are subject to change.