July 29, 2021

Law360 Coronavirus Afternoon Briefing June 4

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From Media & Entertainment Law360

Thursday, June 4, 2020

TOP NEWS


Senate Sends PPP Loan Flexibility To Trump’s Desk

The Senate on Wednesday approved a bipartisan measure that would give more time and flexibility to employers who receive forgivable loans from the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program, sending the House-passed bill to President Donald Trump, who is expected to sign it.

Coronavirus: How Law Firms Are Handling The Downturn

UPDATED June 3, 2020, 11:28 AM EDT | The spreading coronavirus pandemic has upended the legal industry, forcing firms to cut salaries, lay off attorneys and make changes to summer associate programs. Here is a roundup of how law firms are responding. 

Bipartisan Pair Of Sens. Want More Disclosures On PPP Loans

The Republican chairman of the U.S. Senate’s small business committee joined with the panel’s top Democrat on Wednesday to urge the Trump administration to disclose more details about the companies that receive Paycheck Protection Program loans from the Small Business Administration, saying more transparency is needed.

Bank Groups Push Auto Forgiveness For Some PPP Loans

Two major banking industry trade groups have urged federal lawmakers to guarantee automatic forgiveness for Paycheck Protection Program loans under $150,000, saying this would cut down on paperwork and save billions for the “nation’s smallest small businesses.”

McDonald’s Can’t Dodge Ill. Workers’ COVID-19 Safety Suit

An Illinois state court judge refused Wednesday to toss out a proposed class of Chicago McDonald’s employees’ accusations that the company and certain franchisees haven’t done enough to protect them amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Amazon Workers Say NY Warehouse Unsafe Amid COVID-19

Amazon has failed to follow laws and health guidelines amid the coronavirus pandemic at its fulfillment center on Staten Island, leading to the death and injury of warehouse workers and their families, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday in New York federal court.

CLOSINGS AND RESTRICTIONS


Coronavirus: The Latest Court Closures And Restrictions

UPDATED June 4, 2020, 1:49 PM EDT | As courts across the country take measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, some are restricting access and altering their procedures. Here is a roundup of changes.

Coronavirus: The Latest EU Court Closures And Restrictions

UPDATED June 4, 2020, 11:23 PM GMT | As courts across the region take measures to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, some are restricting access and altering their procedures. Here is a roundup of changes.

WHAT ATTORNEYS NEED TO KNOW


COVID-19 May Usher In Digital Taxes Despite US Tariff Threat

As digital taxes gain momentum around the world, the U.S. is preparing to levy more tariffs in retaliation — but many wonder whether the administration is prepared to escalate trade wars in a global economy hobbled by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Trial Recess: Alex Walsh On The Pleasant Surprises Of Zoom

Trial attorney Alexandra Walsh doesn’t just have her own practice to worry about during the coronavirus pandemic. The Wilkinson Walsh founding partner spoke to Law360 about juggling responsibilities during the crisis and how moving meetings onto Zoom may have had a hidden benefit of keeping ever-distracted lawyers on task.

Judges Worried About Virus’ Impact On Upcoming Trials

A trio of Texas judges said Wednesday they’re worried about how jury trials will recover from the coronavirus pandemic, citing concerns from the effect on the overall jury pool to how face masks will impact a fundamental task of courts and trial attorneys — assessing juror and witness credibility.

US To Block Passenger Flights From Chinese Airlines

China-based airlines are barred from flying to and from the U.S. starting mid-June, the Trump administration said Wednesday, in response to China’s refusal to allow U.S. airlines to restart flights that had been halted amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Fla. Detainees Testify ICE Isn’t Following COVID-19 Guidelines

Detainees being held by U.S. immigration authorities in three Florida facilities told a federal judge Wednesday about conditions their counsel said are not “remotely sufficient” for safeguarding against COVID-19, but the government insisted there is flexibility in federal health guidelines and court intervention is not warranted.

COVID-19 Remote Work Request Got Engineer Fired, Suit Says

A Massachusetts engineer with high blood pressure who lives with his 81-year-old mother was fired because his company wanted to “make an example” out of his refusal to work from the office during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a suit filed Wednesday in federal court.

SEC Sues Fla. Firm Pushing Investments In COVID-19 Cure

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filed suit against a purported internet investment adviser on Wednesday for failing to turn over its books while touting investment opportunities related to treatments and vaccines for COVID-19.

Feds Fight Crypto Fraudster’s Release Bid After Just 8 Months

Prosecutors told a New York federal judge Tuesday she should not grant the COVID-related release request of a man who has only served eight months of a more than seven-year sentence for running a $1.5 million cryptocurrency scheme that defrauded investors.

Geragos Law Firm Wants Travelers’ COVID-19 Suit Tossed

Geragos & Geragos APC on Tuesday asked a California federal judge to dismiss Travelers Casualty Insurance Co. of America’s suit seeking a declaration that it does not have to cover the law firm’s financial losses during the COVID-19 pandemic, arguing the insurer “clearly engaged” in forum shopping.

Treasury Blames Tribes’ Data Problems For COVID Fund Delay

The Treasury Department expects to take an additional week past its planned date to begin sending $3.2 billion in COVID-19-related funding to tribal governments, telling a D.C. federal judge Wednesday it needs the extra time because hundreds of tribes have not submitted the right data to receive the much-delayed money.

Travel Insurer Sued For Denying Coverage Of Canceled Trips

Generali Global Assistance Inc. is being sued by a proposed class of would-be travelers who allege the company wrongfully denied insurance claims for trips canceled as a result of government stay-at-home orders issued to stem the spread of COVID-19.

Princess Cruise Lines Slams Passengers’ COVID-19 Suits

Princess Cruise Lines Ltd. has asked a California federal judge to dismiss two lawsuits claiming it put customers in danger of contracting COVID-19, saying the passengers filing suit can’t prove they were in danger of getting the virus when they voyaged aboard the Grand Princess.

EXPERT ANALYSIS


Best Practices For A Paperless Law Practice

A significant challenge in practicing law remotely is the use and handling of documents without paper, because common digital tools such as email or even secure file transfer applications are problematic, say attorneys at Baker McKenzie.

Virus Leave Poses Pay Calculation Issues For Public Agencies

Public agencies face hurdles and litigation risks in determining workers’ regular compensation rate for paid leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, despite guidance from Ninth Circuit case law, say Elizabeth Arce and Jennifer Palagi at Liebert Cassidy.

And Now A Word From The Panel: Pandemic MDLs

While it is too soon to know whether the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation will receive any petitions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, there are lessons to be learned from looking back at the panel’s experience with MDLs in the aftermath of past outbreaks, says Alan Rothman at Sidley.

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