As we monitor evolving COVID-19 developments, we understand that you may be concerned about your business, your employees, and your future. To keep you informed, we have put together a Q&A that reflects the most pressing issues for business of all sizes. Additionally, we are compiling resources to help you navigate business operations, which may be found at the bottom of this page. We will update this page as new information becomes available. For specific questions related to COVID-19, please contact Dave Katalinas.
There are a number of new programs available to business owners of all sizes and even more available to those businesses that qualify as small businesses. These include SBA loans, interruption loans, microloans and various grant and relief programs, as well as private funds. A more detailed discussion of access to capital may be found in our blog, Capital Access During the COVID-19 Crisis.
On April 26, Gov. Polis issued EO D 2020 044, Safer at Home, which was accompanied by Executive Director Ryan’s Public Health Order 20-28, Safer at Home. The public perception is that these orders have relaxed the restrictions previously imposed by the Stay at Home Order. While this is true to some extent, the new Safer at Home Order has added some requirements for Critical Businesses to continue to operate, while broader groups of people are integrated back into their workspaces. Learn more in our blog, Tips for Critical Businesses Amid Safer at Home Orders.
The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. All businesses with 500 or fewer employees are eligible. For businesses in the hotel and food service industries, the 500 employee limitation is calculated on a per-location basis. Learn more about the qualifications here. Additional guidance was issued on April 28. You can learn about the new rules here.
Yes, the Department of labor issued guidance, a factsheet, and a mandatory notice related to the emergency paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave permitted under the Families FIrst Coronavirus Response Act. Read here for the details.
We understand that this is a difficult time for all employers right now. Deciding to reduce your workforce or lower salaries is not an easy decision. We have two blogs that will provide you with the details you need for each scenario. Read Warning for Companies Lowering Salaries and Considerations When Reducing your Workforce for more information. On May 3, the Department of Labor issued guidance regarding Short-Time Compensation Programs. Read the details in our here.
Most business interruption coverage is included as an endorsement to a property policy. In order to trigger coverage, there needs to be “direct physical loss” to the property that is caused by a covered peril. According to insurance carriers, a government-mandated closure does not qualify as a “direct physical loss.” Additionally, many policies specifically exclude coverage for communicable diseases/infections. Learn more in our blog, Coronavirus Insurance Coverage Considerations.
At the state level, Governor Jared Polis’ Executive Order D 2020 012 (March 20, 2020) has ordered state agencies to work with landlords to attempt to create a lawful measure to suspend evictions until the end of April 2020 for the non-payment of rent and minor tenancy violations. For more information about your options, read our blog, Evictions in the Time of COVID-19.
Force majeure clauses are commonly found in commercial contracts to allocate risk in situations where one or more parties’ contractual obligations are made impossible (or nearly impossible) by unforeseen events outside of the parties’ control. COVID-19 could constitute force majeure in a contract, but not always. Read, Practical Considerations Surrounding the Applicability of Force Majeure Clauses in the Midst of COVID-19 for a list of five items you should consider before you enforce a force majeure.
There are a variety of state and local orders that you need to be aware of when considering practices on your jobsite. Read our blog, An Updated Breakdown of Stay at Home Orders by Locality for the Construction Industry for details. In addition, in our post The Long (But Diminishing) Reach of the Six-Foot Rule: Social Distancing in the Construction Industry we break down the orders on social distancing.
Before attempting to invoke a force majeure or “delays” clause (or if facing another party’s attempt to invoke that clause to your detriment), you should look at your contract’s actual language to determine if the triggering events/criteria have occurred or been met. Learn more in our blog What Can You Do When COVID-19 Impacts Your Construction Site?
We have been tracking the impact of Stay at Home Orders in our other blog posts, but in our recent post, Whistleblowing on Social Distancing: How Ignoring Regulations Could Get You Sued or Fined, we address your obligations and exposures regarding an outbreak on your jobsite, and what you can do to mitigate risk. The take-away is: comply with Social Distancing regulations wherever possible and document your efforts to do so. Creating and documenting a culture of compliance will help avoid or mitigate regulatory fines and should help minimize actual jobsite risks. It could also increase your odds of finding insurance coverage for indemnity and defense costs arising out of a job site outbreak.
On April 1, Executive Director Ryan issued the Third Updated Public Health Order 20-24. This order clarifies that if someone is sick or has been exposed to someone who is sick, they must not go to work, even for critical businesses. This extends to all illnesses, not just COVID-19 illness. If someone is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, they must self-isolate. COVID-19 symptoms include but are not limited to cough, shortness of breath, or fever. Learn more here.
The slew of recent Executive Orders, Health Orders and corresponding rules and exemptions have thrown a wrench of some kind into the normal operation of all industries. Cannabis is no exception. In addition to the new realities related to employees, insurance and operating a retail space, cannabis has inherited an extra layer of business challenges and considerations. Read our blog, How the Cannabis Industry Can Be a Leader to learn more about new online and phone ordering opportunities, curb-side pickup of products and licensing issues facing cannabis licensees.
Yes, several states have extended their franchise registration filing deadlines for FDDs. California, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Minnesota, New York, North Three immediate steps to take for restaurants and bars Dakota, Virginia, and Washington have all extended their deadlines or announced filing changes. To learn more about each state's exceptions, view our blog Franchise Disclosure Document State Extensions.
If you're a distillery, the Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) issued guidance for ethanol-based hand sanitizer and waived certain permitting and tax provisions. Specifically, any existing Distilled Spirits Permittee (DSP) can manufacture hand sanitizer or distilled spirits (ethanol) for use in hand sanitizer, as described in TTB notice, without having to obtain authorization first. Read our blog, From Craft Spirits to Sanitizer: TTB Issues Guidance on Hand Sanitizer Exceptions for Distillers.
Dining rooms are closed, but delivery, carry-out, and drive-through services are currently permitted and highly encouraged. For restaurants, manufacturers, brewpubs, distillery pubs, and vintner’s restaurants, please work with your retail liquor store partners to facilitate the delivery of alcohol products in compliance with Colorado liquor code. Learn more about the steps you should take in our blog, Three Immediate Steps to Take Today for Restaurants and Bars.
Yes, a few arbitration practices have gone remote, including our team at Moye White. To learn more about remote arbitration and mediation practices, read our blog Alternative Dispute Resolution Goes Remote.
On March 23, Colorado began providing free emergency childcare for health workers, first responders, and staff at residential care facilities. This effort was originally set up to last two weeks and was paid for by state and private dollars. On March 30, the order was updated to include employees of essential businesses and provide 100% tuition credit for childcare through May 17. See our post, Free Emergency Childcare for Construction Workers (and Other Essential Businesses) for more information.
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