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Ernst, Paul Demand SBA Inspector General Assess $5.4 Billion in Small Business Loan Fraud

The senators’ inquiry follows a report by the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee which detailed widespread fraud in the Paycheck Protection and Economic Injury Disaster Loan Programs.

WASHINGTON – Following a new Pandemic Response Accountability Committee (PRAC) alert detailing widespread fraud in the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, U.S. Senators Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) are requesting Hannibal Ware, Inspector General of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), determine the extent of fraudulent activity.  


In their letter, the senators write: “On January 30, 2023, the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee (PRAC) released a fraud alert detailing widespread fraud of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL). Specifically, PRAC reviewed over 33 million applications and discovered 221,427 applications used fraudulent social security numbers. Of those, 69,323 applications were issued EIDL and PPP loans, totaling over $5.4 billion in funds dispensed to fraudsters…What PRAC has discovered is deeply disturbing and the extent of the fraud could be far greater.”


Ernst and Paul are requesting an assessment including:

  1. An investigation into the nearly 70,000 PPP loans that were issued, including the potential for recovery of the $5.4 billion dispensed;
  2. A review of the actions SBA took with respect to identifying fraud and alerting affected taxpayers;
  3. A review of SBA’s failure to take appropriate measures to validate applicants prior to dispensing funds as well as during EIDL servicing and the PPP loan forgiveness process; and
  4. A review of SBA’s PPP forgiveness process including its automated and manual checks as well as compliance with the forgiveness audit plan authorized by Section 307 of the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits and Venues Act.


You can read the full letter HERE.