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Yale Padlock 5

Accommodating Field Directions While Maintaining Good Client Relations and Guarding Against Unintended Liabilities

George M. Nicholos
During construction, the parties’ focus is often on maintaining a good working relationship. That is a valuable goal, however, it can sometimes result in parties avoiding technical requirements in their contracts, including for such things as field directions. The parties understandably want to keep the project on track, often accommodating modifications to the work agreed ...
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Doctor Holding Syringe

OSHA Pursues A Different COVID Strategy

Dean T. Buckius
Effective January 26, 2022, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has withdrawn its Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) that would have required employers with 100 or more employees to ensure that their employees were vaccinated against COVID-19 or undergo weekly COVID-19 testing.  OSHA’s decision to scrap the ETS follows the United States Supreme Court’s January ...
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COVID-19: Fatigue Remains, But Ignore the Global Situation at Your Peril

COVID-19: Fatigue Remains, But Ignore the Global Situation at Your Peril

Neil S. Lowenstein
The COVID-19 pandemic’s duration is approaching the two-year mark, leading to significant “COVID Fatigue” for everyone. However, the recent spike in confirmed cases makes ignoring the potential impact globally on business owners’ critical. According to the World Health Organization, confirmed cases rose by nearly 10 million in recent weeks; far higher than at any other time during 2021, with most of those confirmed cases being, ...
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The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal and its Impact on SWaM and DBE Programs

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal and its Impact on SWaM and DBE Programs

Gaela R. Normile
On November 15, 2021, President Biden signed into law the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, also known as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal. The $1.75 trillion infrastructure bill, which is the largest investment in the nation’s infrastructure since 1956, will have a significant impact on Small, Women-owned, and Minority-owned businesses (SWaM) and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) ...
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Virginia Seeks to Become the Next State to Decriminalize Possession of Psychedelic Mushrooms

Virginia Seeks to Become the Next State to Decriminalize Possession of Psychedelic Mushrooms

Jonathan V. Gallo
After legalizing simple possession of marijuana less than 1 year ago, Virginia is seeking to become the next state, behind Oregon to decriminalize the possession of psilocybin or psilocyn, commonly known as psychedelic or “magic” mushrooms.  Recent legislation introduced in the Virginia Senate this week by Senators Ghazala Hashmi (D) and Jennifer Boysko (D) would ...
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Agreement Blur Business 2

QDRO’s From The Plan Administrator’s Perspective

Jane D. Tucker, Karen Elligers
A qualified domestic relations order (“QDRO”) is a state domestic relations order that assigns to an alternate payee (such as a former spouse or a child) the right to receive all or a portion of benefits payable to a plan participant. Specifically, under ERISA Section 206(d)(3)(B) and Internal Revenue Code Section 414(p)(1)(B), a QDRO is ...
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The New Copyright Claims Board

The New Copyright Claims Board

Jane D. Tucker
Copyright infringement cases are costly and time-consuming, but there is now an alternative for smaller claims - a new small claims tribunal for copyright matters involving less than $30,000.  In December 2020, Congress passed the Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act of 2020 which directed the Copyright Office to establish the Copyright Claims Board (the ...
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Syringe and Medical Vial With Light Blue Vaccine

Supreme Court Issues Two Important Decisions On COVID-19 Vaccination And Testing

Dean T. Buckius, George M. Nicholos
Today, the United States Supreme Court decided to block the OSHA Emergency Temporary Standard (“ETS”) requiring that employers with 100 or more employees ensure that their employees are vaccinated or tested weekly for COVID-19. While the decision is not a final ruling on the validity of the OSHA ETS, it suspends the vaccination or testing ...
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Town House

Effect of Expanded Jurisdiction of Virginia Court of Appeals on Community Associations

W. Thomas Chappell
Legal Alert for Community Associations: Community associations should take notice that Virginia recently became the final state to allow civil litigants a right to appeal a circuit court ruling.  This article provides a detailed overview of these changes. Under prior law, if a party wanted to appeal a civil judgment from a circuit court, that ...
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Statue of Lady Justice

New Certification Requirement for Federal Contractors

Anne G. Bibeau
Beginning this year, federal supply and service contractors and subcontractors will be required to certify that they have developed and maintained an affirmative action program (AAP) for each establishment. Previously, while most federal contractors have been required to have an AAP, they did not have to show that they met this requirement unless the Office ...
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Federal Contractors Now Restricted in Questioning Applicants about Their Criminal Records

Federal Contractors Now Restricted in Questioning Applicants about Their Criminal Records

Labor & Employment
Anne G. Bibeau
Hidden deep within the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal 2020 is a “ban the box” provision that restricts federal contractors’ inquiries into their applicants’ criminal histories. This new provision, which went into effect on December 20, 2021, prohibits federal contractors from requesting “the disclosure of criminal history record information regarding an applicant for a ...
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COVID-19 Task Force Wearing a Mask

COVID Updates for the New Year

Anne G. Bibeau
As 2021 winds down, there have been a few developments regarding COVID-19 that employers should be aware of: The OSHA Emergency Temporary Standard (“ETS”) for employers with 100 or more employees is back on, at least for now. This rule will require employers to either mandate that all employees get vaccinated, or that unvaccinated employees ...
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Lady Justice With Law Books Background

2021 Legislative Changes that Impact Virginia Community Associations

W. Thomas Chappell
In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, the Virginia General Assembly had a busy 2021 session that consisted of a regular session and a subsequent special session during which it passed many different pieces of legislation that will affect community associations ...
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Cannabis Plant

Don’t Be Dazed and Confused

Deborah M. Casey, Kathleen W. Panagis
Legalization of Marijuana and Possible Impact on Virginia Community Associations Massive legislation legalizing marijuana in Virginia became law July 1, 2021 ...
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Vandventer black llp Marijuana Banking Legislation Update: SAFE Banking Act Removed from Defense Spending Bill

SAFE Banking Act Removed from Defense Spending Bill

Cannabis Law
Jonathan Gallo
Marijuana Banking Legislation Update: The Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act, which would prohibit financial institutions from being penalized for doing business with marijuana companies, was stripped from the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the omnibus spending bill pending in Congress. In September, the House included the SAFE Banking Act as an amendment to ...
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Syringe and Medical Vial With Light Blue Vaccine

LEGAL ALERT: Federal Court Issues Nationwide Injunction Against Federal Contractor Vaccine Mandate

Anne G. Bibeau
The United States District Court for the Southern District of Georgia issued a preliminary injunction on December 7, 2021, stopping the federal government from enforcing the federal contractor vaccine mandate, Executive Order 14042. Under the mandate, contractors with covered federal contracts are required to abide by the Safer Federal Workforce Taskforce Guidance, which mandates that ...
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Cybersecurity Certification

Department of Justice Announces New Civil Cyber-Fraud Initiative – What This Means for Federal Contractors

Jonathan Gallo
Recently, Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco announced the Department of Justice’s new Civil Cyber-Fraud Initiative, aimed at combatting “new and emerging cyber threats to the security of sensitive information and critical systems.”  The Initiative will be led by the Department’s Civil Division Commercial Litigation Branch, Fraud Section, and is a direct result of the ...
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Hand Coding

Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) 2.0 – What Federal Contractors Need To Know

Jonathan Gallo
On November 4, 2021, the Department of Defense (DoD) issued an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking by releasing the latest and highly anticipated iteration of the CMMC program – CMMC 2.0.  According to the DoD, the streamlined version of CMMC 2.0: Cuts red tape for small and medium-sized businesses Sets priorities for protecting DoD information ...
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Hand Holding Adult Quad Cane

2021 Year-End Compliance Issues and Amendments for Retirement Plans

Vandeventer Black
As the end of 2021 approaches, despite the current focus on proposed legislative infrastructure, spending, and tax packages, retirement plan sponsors should take time before year-end to review deadlines for required 2021 plan amendments and related compliance obligations. 401(k) plan hardship withdrawals – required amendment. The IRS issued regulations in 2019 liberalizing the hardship withdrawal ...
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Hand With Gloves Holding Cotton Swab

Court Extends Order Blocking Vaccine and Testing Requirement for Private Employers

Dean T. Buckius
On Friday, November 12, a federal appeals court extended its November 6 order temporarily staying (or suspending) the enforcement of OSHA’s new rules that require that employers with 100 or more employees ensure that their employees are vaccinated or tested weekly for Covid-19. We reported on OSHA’s new rules here and on the temporary stay ...
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