Posts tagged COVID-19 Rapid Response Team.
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After much haggling, Congress passed its second major COVID-related relief package on December 21, 2020. The $900 billion package is included in the 5,593-page Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, which is expected to be signed by President Trump shortly and will provide funding for the federal government between now and the end of the current fiscal year on September 30, 2021.

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On December 16, 2020, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued new guidance to employers that want to require employees to get Covid-19 vaccinations when they become available to most Americans. The guidance also outlines the steps that employers must take before they can exclude unvaccinated employees from their facilities and job sites.

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Labor and Employment attorney Laura Pasqualone discussed on the Employment Legal Alliance podcast the potential legal issues employers may face once a COVID-19 vaccine is available to the public.

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HR can be especially challenging for smaller employers with limited resources and can be even more challenging for business during the COVID-19 rebuilding period. In these difficult times, it is important to be prepared for the new normal in the workplace. This webinar slide deck aims to discuss some of the most critical areas you need to be aware of to avoid HR-related fines, lawsuits, or penalties.

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SB4 has a number of implications for Nevada businesses, which includes: (1) requiring certain state agencies and the Clark and Washoe County health districts to adopt regulations related to lodging facilities for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic; (2) limiting civil liability for businesses and other entities that substantially comply with controlling health standards; and (3) granting additional enforcement authority to certain state agencies, including the Nevada Secretary of State (“SOS”).

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On June 30, the Arizona Department of Revenue issued a draft Transaction Privilege Tax Ruling TPR 20-XX and the corresponding Transaction Privilege Tax Procedure TPP 20-XX. These tax rulings are the first step formalizing the procedure for late payment penalty abatement due to  COVID-19.

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As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, states are clarifying their position on certain tax relief provisions available to taxpayers. Additionally, taxpayers in the Southwest and nationwide should be aware that the July 15 extended filing deadline for 2019 corporate and personal income tax at the federal and state levels is rapidly approaching.

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Businesses small and large have been impacted in myriad ways by the COVID-19 crisis but some businesses have responded by reinventing themselves by making products or providing services to meet the new demands of COVID-19.

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On March 30, 2020, the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense issued a memorandum to procurement officials throughout the Department of Defense on managing the effects of the COVID-19 virus on defense contracts. This memorandum is authored by Kim Herrington, the Acting Principal Director, Defense Pricing and Contracting. Although the memorandum lacks detail, it should be viewed as an encouraging sign from the DoD that it recognizes its contractors are impacted by the virus and that they are entitled to seek relief.

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On June 11, 2020, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued new guidance that addresses numerous pandemic-related topics. 

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On June 5, 2020, President Trump signed into law the latest COVID-19 relief-related legislation: the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act (the “Act”). As stated in the title of the Act, the purpose of this legislation is to provide the recipients of PPP loans greater flexibility in the use of loan funds, while maintaining eligibility for loan forgiveness.

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The USPTO has twice announced extensions of certain trademark and patent deadlines in accordance with the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). The most recent extensions will lapse on May 31, 2020, but the USPTO will continue to offer some relief.

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The SBRA law became effective in February 2020. In March, Congress increased the eligibility limit to businesses with up to $7,500,000 in debt for at least a year. Many, if not most, chapter 11 filings could qualify.

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On April 27, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission issued guidance regarding investment advisory firms’ duty to disclose loans obtained under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) created under Section 1102 of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The SEC has concluded that an advisory firm must disclose to clients that it has taken a PPP loan to counter the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Following Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak’s March 17, 2020 directive to close all non-essential businesses, Nevada gaming establishments ceased operations and sent all employees home. This article seeks to provide Nevada gaming establishments with several topics to consider when crafting policies and protocols for bringing employees back into the workplace during the ongoing pandemic.

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The USPTO has announced extensions of certain patent and trademark deadlines in accordance with the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). Under some conditions, discussed below, deadlines for filing certain patent and trademark related documents and paying certain required fees that would otherwise have been due between March 27 and May 31 may now be filed on or before June 1.

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COVID-19 and the subsequent stay-at-home/safer-at-home orders that have been in place for approximately the last 6-weeks resulted in severe financial strain on many borrowers who have either lost their jobs, been furloughed, experienced a significant reduction in their income as a result of cutting hours or have witnessed a decline in business.

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Although many employers in the construction industry have continued to operate as essential businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, some have allowed certain employees to work from home where possible. As states begin to loosen restrictions and “reopen” for business in the coming weeks and months, construction employers will need to implement new, and possibly permanent, policies and guidelines designed to keep the construction workforce safe.

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On April 24, 2020, the Small Business Administration (“SBA”) issued revised and updated guidelines to allow certain gaming businesses to benefit from the new Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) created under Title II of the CARES Act. This is a reversal of the SBA’s longstanding regulations that made most gaming businesses ineligible for any SBA loans.

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As stay-at-home orders and the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic continue, states continue to update the tax relief available to taxpayers. The following summarizes the latest news in the Southwest.

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Cybercriminals are exploiting the vulnerability of the healthcare community affected by COVID-19, an increase in teleworking and the need by medical professionals to stay current on coronavirus information.

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As the fallout from the COVID-19 virus widens and the prospect of an economic downturn looms, lenders are likely to focus more on protecting their collateral. Although many lenders are negotiating accommodations with borrowers in the short term, some of these accommodations will inevitably be unsuccessful and lead to defaults.

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On April 17, 2020, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission published additional guidance for employers regarding the issues they are facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The latest advice focuses on the reasonable accommodation requirement of the Americans with Disabilities Act (the “ADA”).

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The CARES Act allows a 401(k) plan to provide a coronavirus-related distribution option (CVR Distribution) to plan participants affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, a plan participant who is a Qualified Individual can elect one or more CVR Distributions totaling no more than $100,000 during the period beginning January 1, 2020 and ending December 30, 2020.

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On April 16, 2020, the Department of Insurance issued Regulatory Bulletin 2020-04, addressing the flexibility that the Agency asks the Insurance Industry to practice.

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In a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) issued on April 10, the IRS clarified the interaction between the employer relief provisions in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) and the loan forgiveness provision for employers that receive a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan.

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On April 13, 2020, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued guidance for member firms and registered persons regarding the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) created under Section 1102 of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. FINRA specifically addressed the interaction between PPP loan forgiveness and disclosure obligations under Question 14K on Form U4.

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As we navigate through these uncertain times and face challenges like never seen before in the world of commercial leasing, landlords and tenants should be cautioned against the unintended consequences of their actions.

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With many cities following shelter-in-place orders because of the COVID-19 outbreak, many businesses have been forced to close their doors. This does not mean that businesses are left to only sit back and wait for orders to lift. Instead, businesses should consider proactive measures to connect with their community, raise brand awareness and focus on how to bring in customers once the pandemic subsides.

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Just like for-profit employers, nonprofit organizations (“nonprofits”) across the country have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Much action has been taken by Congress to enact laws that will provide for the economic health of business and employees.

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As social distancing and self-isolating guidelines are set in place with no immediate end in sight, many casinos are facing an uncertain future. Numerous concerts, conferences and other events held in casino convention centers have been canceled because of the coronavirus outbreak.

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Consumer and industrial demand for gasoline has plummeted as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, a geopolitical standoff between Saudi Arabia and Russia has created a worldwide oil glut. As a result, oil prices have dropped below levels necessary to maintain profitable production in many parts of the United States.

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Since the IRS announced that the due date for filing and payment of individual, corporate, and fiduciary income tax returns have been extended to July 15, 2020, the states have followed suit, including the Southwestern states that Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie covers — Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, and Texas.  This alert will look at how these Southwestern states have implemented income tax relief and what relief these states have provided for sales tax and property tax filing and payment deadlines. This is current as of April 8 but States may take action after this date to provide tax relief.

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Most commercial evictions will be prohibited through May 31, 2020 under an executive order issued on April 6, 2020 by Arizona Governor Doug Ducey. Under the order, commercial landlords will be prohibited from locking out tenants, issuing a notice to vacate, or otherwise “attempt[ing] to inhibit the operations of a business.” The prohibition applies if the tenant is suffering financial hardship from the COVID-19 pandemic that prevents it from paying rent and will remain  in effect until May 31, 2020.

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Not surprisingly, the COVID-19 pandemic is having an effect on judicial proceedings in Colorado.  The Governor and chief judges have acted to limit court activity in order to mitigate the economic consequences and protect the health of those who work or interact with the court system. Colorado state and federal courts are open and operating, but access is limited. 

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Scott Brown, corporate consumer finance partner, at Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie LLP,  spoke at a recent compliance conference on the Fair Credit Reporting Act ("FCRA").

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On April 2, 2020 in the late afternoon, the Small Business Administration issued an interim final rule (Docket No. SBA-2020-0015, the “Rules”) for the administration of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) created under Section 1102 of the CARES Act.

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Since March 19, 2020 Governor Ducey has issued Executive Orders to address the growing public health emergency arising from the COVID-19 virus.  These orders cover a broad range of topics aimed to address the needs faced by those who live and work in Arizona.

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The California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”) came into effect on January 1, 2020, significantly altering the data privacy landscape for businesses across the nation. As a result, many businesses have been waiting to finalize their compliance procedures to ensure consistency with those regulations, which are still subject to revision.

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The impact of COVID-19 on the hospitality industry which includes bars, restaurants and liquor distributors, distilleries, breweries and more cannot be overstated. As losses continue, businesses have been forced to make impossible choices and implement innovative ways to protect their businesses and employees.

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Lawyers who advise clients in financial distress are searching for answers for their clients.  Ultimately, cash flow and fundamentals are critical to business survival, but other tools can help.  Is it coincidence that the Small Business Reorganization Act became effective as the nation unknowingly was headed to financial crisis?

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The USPTO, like many other trademark offices worldwide, has responded to the COVID-19 outbreak by offering extensions of time for certain deadlines related to trademark applications and registrations. A 30-day extension of time is now available.

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Congress Passes the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act

Watch the webinar now to review the details of the new stimulus package that was signed into law Friday, March 27, 2020.

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Working from home may mean working without convenient access to common office equipment such as printers and scanners.  As such, the situation lends itself to taking advantage of the USPTO’s acceptance of electronic “S-signatures” wherein documents can be signed without being printed.

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The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”) was passed by Congress and signed by the President on March 27, 2020. This stimulus package is more than double the amount provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that was passed during the Great Recession. The 880-page bill includes substantial aid for both employed and unemployed Americans, the public health system, and employers of all sizes, including nonprofit organizations.

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The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) was signed by President Trump on March 18, 2020, and it becomes effective on April 1, 2020. The FFCRA contains provisions for emergency paid sick leave and expanded family leave that are available for some employees affected by COVID-19.

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Governor Polis issued Executive Order #D-2020-012 on Friday March 20, 2020 (the “Order”) in an attempt to discourage evictions and foreclosures for both residential and commercial real estate properties in the wake of the State’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic shuttering many businesses.

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As many businesses are temporarily shutting down and closing their front doors, companies are forced to reevaluate how they are interacting with customers to ensure the continuation of customer loyalty, connections, and the strength of their brands. Yet, despite this unprecedented time of social distancing, many opportunities still exist for businesses to develop and build those connections.

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The COVID-19 pandemic has sent shock waves through the business world. This rapidly changing landscape has resulted in many questions among tenants (some of whose businesses are closed) and landlords facing rent losses

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Unfortunately, cyber criminals see the chaos caused by the COVID-19 pandemic as an opportunity to send phishing emails which seem like they are delivered from the email domains associated with the Centers for Disease Control, the World Health Organization, the National Institutes of Health, state/local agencies, service providers and even company HR departments.

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In an effort to keep you apprised of the rapid developments surrounding COVID-19, we wanted to share with you further guidance on the Financial Services Sector Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers from the U.S. Department of the Treasury.  As always, please let us know how we can help you.

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In an effort to keep you apprised of the rapid developments surrounding COVID-19, we wanted to share with you further guidance on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act from the U.S. Department of Labor.  As always, please let us know how we can help you.

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While most businesses have reduced operations or shut down entirely during this time of economic turmoil, some businesses are thriving. Supermarkets, pharmacies and online retailers are dominating the headlines but another industry quietly thriving is online video gaming.

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The outbreak of the respiratory disease (COVID-19) caused by the new coronavirus continues to present many issues for employers. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expects the disease to continue to spread throughout the country for the next several months. Meanwhile, Congress has passed new federal legislation that provides relief for some employees affected by COVID-19.

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In a world of shuttered casinos, restaurants and bars, many opportunities still exist for operators to develop business and build their brands through games and sweepstakes on the Internet.

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On March 11, 2020, Governor Ducey declared a state of emergency in Arizona due to COVID-19. Even before this declaration, COVID-19 and the public reaction to it had begun to affect commercial activity.

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