Find Help for Business Recovery when Disaster Strikes with SCORE “Counselors to America’s Small Business”

Washington, D.C.—Even with the best precautions, any business can experience a crisis, including equipment failures, thefts, accidents or natural disasters. Businesses that cope best already have a disaster plan in place.

The plan should include phone numbers and email addresses of all employees; bank, insurance and leasing information; customer information; and any information vital for running the business. Employees should know what steps to take during an emergency.

SCORE “Counselors to America’s Small Business” also offers five tips on recovering from a disaster.

Follow your disaster recovery plan. You should have a copy that is easily accessible at your business, plus at least one copy elsewhere.

  • Contact your staff to make sure they are safe and well. Update them on the status of your business and the potential impact to their employment and income.
  • Use your backup computer system. You should have programs, files and duplicate records, including accounts receivable and client information, at a separate, safe location.
  • Contact your insurance carrier and schedule an appraisal. You should have coverage not only for property damage and loss, including inventory, but also for business interruption.
  • Consider SBA-backed loans to aid your recovery. Loans to businesses of all sizes are available up to $1.5 million to repair damage to real estate and replace machinery, equipment and inventory. Economic Injury Disaster Loans are available for qualified businesses unable to pay bills or meet operation expenses.

Many SCORE counselors have disaster recovery experience, and they are willing to share their advice. In addition, Southern California SCORE offices can help entrepreneurs and business owners following the recent wildfires:

San Diego SCORE–www.score-sandiego.org

619/557-7272

Inland Empire SCORE–www.iescore503.org

951/652-4390

Orange County SCORE–www.score114.org

714/550-7369

Coachella Valley SCORE–www.coachellavalley.scorechapter.org

760/320-6682

Los Angeles SCORE–www.scorela.org

818/552-3206

SCORE also offers learning guides and business tools for entrepreneurs at www.score.org. Click on “Disaster Prep and Relief” for important links to SBA Disaster Loan Assistance, the FEMA Application for Assistance and Ask SCORE for Business Advice. More than 50 SCORE online counselors have disaster preparedness and recovery expertise.

Since 1964, SCORE “Counselors to America’s Small Business” has assisted more than 7.8 million aspiring entrepreneurs and small business owners through counseling and business workshops. More than 10,500 volunteer business counselors in 389 chapters serve their communities through entrepreneur education dedicated to the formation, growth and success of small businesses.

For more information about starting or operating a small business, call 1-800/634-0245 for the SCORE chapter nearest you. Or, visit SCORE on the Web at www.score.org.