october 28, 2020
october 22, 2020
October 19, 2020
- Hope for Companies Where COVID-19-Related Business Interruption Claims Have Been Denied Without Investigation
october 15, 2020
october 12, 2020
october 8, 2020
october 5, 2020
september 22, 2020
- California Employers Now Subject to Additional COVID-19-Related Laws Related to Cal/OSHA Reporting and Worker’s Compensation
september 21, 2020
September 11, 2020
- COVID-19-Related Paid Sick Leave Has Been Expanded in California Yet Again to All Employers with 500+ Employees
august 4, 2020
july 6, 2020
july 1, 2020
- PPP Loan Deadline May Be Extended as SBA Issues New Rules Relating to Loan Forgiveness and Eligibility
- California Looks to Pass Legislation Concerning Business Interruption Coverage Due to COVID-19
June 29, 2020
June 22, 2020
- PPP Loan Forgiveness Application Forms Updated and Streamlined
- Nevada Division of Insurance to Disallow Policy Exclusions Related to COVID-19
- CDI Announces New Order Regarding Workers’ Compensation Premium Savings for CA Businesses Affected by COVID-19
june 15, 2020
june 10, 2020
- Note to the SBA: Debtors in Bankruptcy Are Eligible for PPP Loans
- California Modifies the Tolling of Statutes of Limitations in Civil Cases
june 8, 2020
June 4, 2020
may 29, 2020
may 28, 2020
- House Introduces Pandemic Risk Insurance Act of 2020 in the Wake of COVID-19 Business Interruption Claims
may 27, 2020
- Hoteliers Beware: a Return to Business Post-Pandemic Brings With It Potential Legal Liability
- House Contemplates Revisions to the Paycheck Protection Program
may 15, 2020
may 14, 2020
- U.S. House Democrats Introduce HEROES Act, a New $3T Stimulus Package
- SAFE Banking Act for Cannabis-Related Businesses Included in the HEROES Act
may 12, 2020
may 8, 2020
- Treasury and the SBA Issue Guidance Regarding the Employee Retention Credit
- Businesses Reopen in Los Angeles County as Stage 2 of California’s Statewide Plan Begins
- Update: Large Employers Required to Pay Coronavirus-Related Sick Leave Under New L.A. County Ordinance
may 6, 2020
- SBA Extends PPP Certification Safe Harbor to May 14
- EPLI Insurance and Employee Benefits in the Age of the Coronavirus
may 5, 2020
- Update: PPP Guidance Issued by the SBA and U.S. Treasury at Odds With the CARES Act—Michelman & Robinson Files First-of-Its-Kind Lawsuit Challenging FAQs
- NAIC Issues Business Interruption Data Call in the Wake of COVID-19
may 4, 2020
- PPP Guidance Issued by the SBA and U.S. Treasury at Odds With the CARES Act—Michelman & Robinson Files First-of-Its-Kind Lawsuit Challenging FAQs
may 1, 2020
april 29, 2020
- Planning for Your Employees' Return to the Workplace
- Los Angeles Hospitality Workers Among Those Thrown a Potential Lifeline
april 24, 2020
- Attention Cannabis Businesses: Hope May Be on the Horizon for Federal COVID-19-Related Relief
- California Department of Insurance Issues Notice Granting Tax-Filing Extension in Response to COVID-19
- SEC Approves Amendments to Nasdaq and NYSE Continued Listing Requirements Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic
April 23, 2020
april 21, 2020
- Additional Funding Is on the Way to Resurrect the PPP
- Certifying Your PPP Loan: Proceed With Caution
april 17, 2020
april 16, 2020
- Employment in the Wake of Coronavirus: EEOC and OSHA Guidance Allows Employers to Go Where They Could Not Go Before
- New Yorkers Ordered to Stay at Home Even Longer Amid the COVID-19 Crisis
- Paycheck Protection Program Funds Exhausted
april 15, 2020
- Attention Insurers: the CDI Has Ordered You to Fairly Investigate All Business Interruption Insurance Claims Caused By the COVID-19 Outbreak
April 14, 2020
- Insurance Companies Have Been Ordered to Provide COVID-19-Related Premium Relief to Businesses and Drivers in California
- What to Do If Your New York Business Has Been Deemed Non-Essential
APRIL 13, 2020
- IP Deadlines and Fees Extended Under the CARES Act
- Employment in the Wake of Coronavirus: Reintegrating Your Workforce in the New Normal
APRIL 10, 2020
- You Successfully Applied for and Received a PPP Loan Under the CARES Act: Now What?
- Safer at Home Order in L.A. Extended to May 15
- Maintaining Your Trade Secrets During the Coronavirus Crisis
APRIL 9, 2020
april 8, 2020
- Congress Looks to Bolster the PPP With Another $250B in Funding
- U.S. Treasury Provides Further Guidance to PPP Borrowers and Lenders
- L.A. Mayor Amends COVID-19-Related Paid Sick Leave Ordinance
april 7, 2020
- Clarifying the Paycheck Protection Program: Payment of Insurance Premiums and Loan Forgiveness under the CARES Act
April 3, 2020
april 2, 2020
april 1, 2020
March 31, 2020
march 30, 2020
- Large Employers Required to Pay Coronavirus-Related Sick Leave Under New L.A. Ordinance
- Insurance Coverage Potentially Triggered by COVID-19
- Attention Insurers: CDI Orders Mandatory Call for Business Interruption Coverage Information in the Wake of COVID-19
- DOL Is Requiring Employers to Post Families First Employee Rights Notice
March 27, 2020
- A Comprehensive Guide to Understanding Coronavirus-Related State Assistance Programs: Who is Giving What to Whom (Part II)
- HHS Relaxing Enforcement of HIPAA to Facilitate Sharing of Information During the COVID-19 Crisis
March 26, 2020
march 25, 2020
march 24, 2020
- Navigating the Coronavirus Pandemic: a Critical Business Review Checklist
- SBA Loans for Companies Impacted by Coronavirus
- SEC Relaxes Federal Proxy Rules for Annual Meetings
march 23, 2020
- Federal Reserve Responds Boldly to Coronavirus-Related Economic Downturn
- The Number of Jurisdictions Implementing Stay-at-Home Orders Is Increasing Exponentially
- Michelman & Robinson’s Guide to Coronavirus-Related Paid Sick Leave and Unemployment Insurance Laws in the Tri-State Area
MARCH 21, 2020
MARCH 20, 2020
- New York Governor’s PAUSE Order
- Illinois Governor’s Statewide Stay-at-Home Order
- Force Majeure Clauses in Commercial Real Estate Contracts
MARCH 19, 2020
- SEC Provides Regulatory Relief for Public Reporting Companies
- Student Loan Borrowers Can Breathe a Sigh of Relief, At Least Temporarily
- California Governor's Statewide Stay-At-Home Order
MARCH 18, 2020
- "Shelter in Place" Orders
- Telecommuting in the Age of Coronavirus
- Families First Coronavirus Response Act Just Passed by the Senate and Signed Into Law by the President
MARCH 17, 2020
- M&R Coronavirus Risk Mitigation Team: A Multi-Disciplinary Legal Team Ready To Immediately Address A Host Of Coronavirus-Related Issues for Businesses, Quickly And Holistically
MARCH 16, 2020
MARCH 5, 2020
Navigating the Coronavirus Pandemic: a Critical Business Review Checklist
MARCH 24, 2020
Given the continuing spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and resulting market and marketplace reaction, you are no doubt feeling the effects of a turbulent economy. More directly, you may well be dealing with your share of business upheaval.
If so, you should be aware of your rights and remedies in the event of coronavirus-related losses, as well as any other obligations you may have as a result of the pandemic. Toward that end, the following questions, answers, and checklist of items that should be top-of-mind will be helpful.
Q. Should I approach my various business partners (landlords, tenants, vendors, etc.) regarding potential defaults? Also, should I otherwise consider modification or forbearance agreements?
A. That depends upon your particular circumstances. At the very least, your various contracts should be reviewed to determine if they include cure periods and to identify modification rights and actual deadlines for payments. Also, since you may not be receiving the full services under your commercial lease agreement, you may be entitled to a reduction of rent. In addition, since there are stay-at-home orders in place, you should contemplate cancelling your current parking obligations. And one other thing to consider is looking at all non-essential contracts for termination and related notice requirements.
Q. What about my credit and bank agreements, should they be analyzed?
A. Yes, it would be a good idea to review these documents for cross-default provisions, personal guarantees, and relevant credit requirements should you need cash on hand.
Q. Could my commercial office lease allow for a rent reduction in the event of an unforeseen downturn in business?
A. Typically, rent is not subject to reduction by virtue of an event like the coronavirus outbreak. That being said, your particular commercial lease agreement could include force majeure, abatement or other provisions that could possibly be leveraged to your advantage. At the end of the day, it all depends upon the particular language of your lease.
Q. Should I review my corporate governance as it relates to the pandemic?
A. Yes, once the smoke clears and a loss of enterprise value is realized, there may be claims against your company’s directors and officers. That being said, you should consider revisiting your applicable indemnity and exculpatory language.
Q. Are there any governmental subsidies and loan programs available to me to combat coronavirus-related losses?
A. New subsidies and loan programs are coming online at a rapid pace. The Federal Reserve resurrected an asset-purchase facility from the 2008 financial crisis intended to encourage banks and financiers to make loans to small businesses and households. It also plans to announce a new Main Street Business Lending Program designed to support lending to “eligible small and medium-sized businesses,” though details have yet to be made available. In addition, earlier this month Congress authorized up to $7B for small business loans issued directly by the government.
More particularly and to overcome temporary revenue losses, the U.S. Small Business Administration is making low-interest federal disaster loans of up to $2M available to eligible borrowers in various designated states and territories.
Q. Might some of my coronavirus-related business losses be covered by insurance?
A. Perhaps. You should consider an audit of your insurance policies to understand the scope of your coverage for business interruption, event cancellation, worker’s compensation and the like?
Q. With my employees now working from home, do I need to revisit our employee handbook or any other employment policies?
A. Definitely. You should issue telecommuting policies—if you have not done so already—and must consider wage and hour issues unique to the circumstances we are now facing (e.g., how are your employees clocking in and out?). At the very least, you will want to bring your employee handbooks current given the various stay-at-home orders now in place?
Q. If I operate an “essential business,” do I need to provide documentation to employees so that they can come to work?
A. Though it may have no legal impact, a letter to law enforcement can be quite useful in the event an employee is stopped on the way to work. Such correspondence from counsel can identify your company by name and the business sector it falls within, (2) explain that the company qualifies as one providing an “essential service” pursuant to the relevant stay-at-home-order in force in your jurisdiction, (3) make clear that employees of your company, specifically, and within your sector, more broadly, are permitted to leave their residences to perform “essential functions” for the necessary period of time required to complete them, and (4) direct employees to present the letter to any law enforcement personnel that may request evidence that they qualify as an “essential service” provider.
Q. Should I be implementing an Employee Assistance Program?
A. While you certainly are not required to, implementing an Employee Assistance Program could go a long way to boost employee morale and address employee concerns during these dark days. The good news is that many insurance policies provide for such programs, which oftentimes include counseling to address grief, loss, family issues, parenting, relationship challenges and divorce, debt management, work conflicts, and legal questions.
10-Issue Check List
For your convenience, here is some of the foregoing information, along with additional considerations, in checklist form:
|||Insurance Policies: They may provide lost profits coverage, an Employee Assistance Program, and other valuable protections you may need now.|
|||Corporate Governance Documents: Be mindful of your by-laws and operating agreements to determine the extent of indemnity and exculpatory language. Likewise, documentation should be reviewed to understand all notice provisions and what authority is permitted by whom in this environment.|
|||Real Estate Leases: Review force majeure and abatement provisions, cure periods and other important terms. Also keep in mind voluntary expenses you may be able to eliminate in the near term, such as unused parking.|
|||Employee Handbooks: These should be updated to reflect any stay-at-home orders issued in your location(s). Doing so can help to protect against potential claims, including worker compensation (if an employee is hurt while telecommuting). Handbooks should also contemplate employees clocking in and out remotely (time cards), establishing a “hotline” (even if a cellphone) in case someone has an emergency or complaint, and other such matters. Further, given that many employees are taking company property home, handbooks should specify that such property remains company property and must be returned in the same condition as it was when taken.|
|||Bank, Credit and Joint Venture Agreements: Documentation addressing credit or other business arrangements should be reviewed for compliance, termination, and remedies sections, as well as cross-default language and personal guarantees.|
|||Vendor Contracts: Many of these agreements include termination and/or cancellation fees. They should be reviewed before taking any action.|
|||“Essential Business” Review: Are you an “essential business,” and if so, what steps are being taken to document that fact and provide evidence to your employees? Also, do you operate in a jurisdiction requiring a permit to be deemed “essential”? If so, and you believe you qualify, you should get one for a host of reasons.|
|||Government Assistance: Many businesses qualify for government assistance. You should conduct a review to see if you are eligible for any such relief.|
|||Return to Work Plan: Most businesses developed plans to leave their offices as a result of the coronavirus, but once stay-at-home orders are lifted, how will your employees return to your physical location(s) and get back up and running in an orderly fashion? Plans should be designed now specifying necessary steps to phase back into your office space(s).|
|||Hotline: Does your company have a designated hotline in place (even if just a cellphone answered by a designated person) so that employees have the ability to make inquiries while working remotely? This could mitigate later claims suggesting you did not create an environment for employees to have their job-related concerns addressed in a timely manner.|
Of course, the items presented here do not represent an exhaustive list of the issues you may be confronting or should be thinking about. Certainly, there will be other inquiries unique to your situation, which may require appropriate guidance.
We are working diligently to keep our clients up to date on coronavirus-related developments. Nevertheless, these developments are changing daily and, in some cases even hourly, so it is important that you make sure you are dealing with the most current information. That being said, this alert is not offered, and should not be relied on, as legal advice. You should consult an attorney for guidance and counsel regarding any specific concern or situation.