Coronavirus Articles

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The FFCRA Paid Leave is Dead (Unless You Liked It)

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act’s (FFCRA) paid leave provisions have expired. The law, which was effective from April 1 through December 31, 2020, required businesses with fewer than 500 employees to provide employees with emergency paid sick leave (EPSL) and emergency family medical leave (EFMLA) in limited coronavirus-related circumstances, and provided businesses with a refundable tax credit for the leave provided. The Consolidated Appropriations ...
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Paycheck Protection Program after the COVID-related Tax Relief Act of 2020 and the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act

NOTE—The COVID-related Tax Relief Act of 2020 and the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act amend the CARES Act, and this Article updates the information in the following Articles previously published: Paycheck Protection Program Under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, March 31, 2020 SBA Issues Interim Final Rule for the Paycheck Protection Program, April 3, 2020 Update on ...
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Circuit Court Upholds Rule Requiring Residents to Sign Assumption of Risk Form As a Condition to Using Certain Common Areas During the Pandemic

A Charlottesville Circuit Court held that a rule promulgated by a Virginia property owners’ association requiring residents to sign an assumption of the risk form prior to using certain common areas was reasonable.  See Norman v. Foxchase Owners’ Assoc., Inc., Case No. CL20-1481 (Albemarle Cnty., Oct. 30, 2020).  From what can be gleaned from a relatively short, but instructive, letter opinion, the case involved the ...
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COVID-19 and Retirement Plan Fiduciary Obligations

Under ERISA, the federal law that regulates retirement and 401(k) plans, plan fiduciaries are required to prudently administer the plan, select and monitor plan investments and sufficiently diversify plan assets to minimize the risk of large losses.  When third parties are retained to assist with these duties, they may become co-fiduciaries, but the employer retains fiduciary oversight responsibility to monitor the selection and performance of ...
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Virtually Impossible: Eleventh Circuit’s Denial of Non-Parties Attending Arbitration Hearings Via Video or Telephone

In the age of COVID, it is a rarity for hearings, oral arguments, client meetings, or any other legal proceeding to be held in-person. Instead, lawyers, judges, arbitrators, and all other legal figures are relying on their computers and telephones to keep the dockets moving. With the relative ease of logging into a hearing or meeting online, it is important to verify whether certain matters ...
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COVID-19 and the CARES Act – Partial Termination Relief for Retirement Plans

Many employers have had to terminate or furlough employees in 2020 due to COVID-19.   Under IRS rules, a partial termination of a retirement or 401(k) plan may occur when there is a significant reduction (generally more than 20%) in plan participation due to employer-initiated terminations or layoffs during the plan year.  If a partial termination occurs, affected participants (those who are terminated) become 100% vested ...
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Simplified PPP Forgiveness Procedure for Loans of $50,000 or Less

NOTE:  This article updates the information in the following Articles previously published: PPP Loan Forgiveness, April 29, 2020 Additional PPP Loan Forgiveness Guidelines, June 2, 2020 PPP Loan Forgiveness Application, After the Payroll Protection Program Flexibility Act of 2020, June 24, 2020 On Friday, October 9, 2020, the Small Business Administration (“SBA”) released guidelines for a simpler loan forgiveness process for Borrowers with Paycheck Protection ...
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Construction Industry Economics Respecting COVID-19 Mixed But Positively Trending

The Architecture Billings Index (ABI) is a composite index derived from monthly report surveys from American Institute of Architects (AIA) member firms located throughout the United States reporting on construction project activity the AIA refers to as “Work-on-the-Boards” (projects in the planning and design processes).  The data is compiled by the AIA’s Economics & Research Group, using a first-hand survey index from architectural firms as ...
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Technology for Community Associations in the Midst of Coronavirus

There is nothing like a global pandemic, complete with Gubernatorial Executive Orders to stay home, social distance and limit gatherings and CDC health recommendations to provide laser focus on how community associations can utilize technology. While the spotlight is on the present crisis, community associations may find that it fast forwards new and improved ways of conducting business utilizing technology ...
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Update on Section 889 restriction on government contractors use of Chinese-made telecommunications equipment and services

Last week, we advised government contractors in this article about the new restrictions imposed by an interim rule and revised Federal Acquisition Regulation clauses that require contractors doing business with DoD, GSA, and NASA to certify they do not use “covered telecommunications and services” from Huawei and other Chinese companies.  We’ve learned that the Director of National Intelligence has responded to a request from DoD ...
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Expedited Trademark Registration For COVID-19 Products and Services

In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, and the need to quickly develop medical products and services to fight the virus, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) is allowing the trademark examination process for marks used to identify qualifying COVID-19 medical products and services to be expedited.  This program expedites the review of qualifying applications by two months.  The USPTO will also waive the ...
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Impact of Executive Order 68 on Hampton Roads Community Associations

In response to increases in positive COVID-19 case counts in the Hampton Roads area, Governor Northam issued Executive Order 68 that places additional restrictions on certain cities and counties.  The jurisdictions subject to this order are:  Cities of Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Suffolk, Portsmouth, Hampton, Williamsburg, Newport News, Poquoson, James City County, and York County (collectively, the “Eastern Region”). Of importance to community associations located ...
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NEW EMERGENCY TEMPORARY STANDARD WILL APPLY TO EMPLOYERS IN VIRGINIA [Part 2]

 WHAT VIRGINIA EMPLOYERS CAN EXPECT IN THE COMING WEEKS This article is the second in a three-part series discussing the New Emergency Temporary Standards for Employers in Virginia. Click here to read Part 1 and Part 3. With the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry’s adoption of 16 VAC 25-220; which is called the Emergency Temporary Standard, Infectious Disease Prevention:  SARS-CoV-2 Virus that Causes COVID-19 ...
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New Emergency Temporary Standard Will Apply to Employers in Virginia

This article is the first in a three-part series discussing the New Emergency Temporary Standards for Employers in Virginia. Click here to read Part 2 and Part 3. Governor Northam’s executive order (EO 63), tasked the Virginia Safety and Health Codes Board (the Board) – which “promulgates and adopts job safety and health standards, [that] employers and employees are required to comply with…”– to create ...
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2020 Legislative Changes Affecting Virginia Community Associations

The 2020 legislative session was notable for a few reasons.  First, the Democrats held the majority of seats in both houses of the General Assembly for the first time in recent history.  Second, the legislature also took action to address the impacts of COVID-19, which has affected virtually every aspect of our society, including community associations.  CAI’s Virginia Legislative Action Committee monitored numerous bills on ...
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COVID-19 and the CARES Act – New IRS Guidance and Relief for Retirement Plan Distributions and Loans

On June 19 and 23, 2020, the IRS issued additional guidance (IRS Notices 2020-50 and 2020-51) clarifying and expanding relief for retirement plan participants under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act).  A previous article summarizing the CARES Act retirement plan provisions can be found here. The new guidance makes the following changes. Required minimum distribution (RMD) waiver relief.  The CARES Act ...
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When to Apply for Forgiveness of a PPP Loan

This Article is based on information available as of June 22, 2020.  The information is subject to change as additional guidance is provided. NOTE—This article updates the information in the following Articles previously published: Paycheck Protection Program Under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, March 31, 2020 SBA Issues Interim Final Rule for the Paycheck Protection Program, April 3, 2020 Update on Paycheck ...
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PPP Loan Forgiveness Application, After the Payroll Protection Program Flexibility Act of 2020

This Article is based on information available as of June 18, 2020.  The information is subject to change as additional guidance is provided.  In mid-May the SBA published the PPP Loan Forgiveness Application (SBA Form 3508).  Following the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act of 2020 becoming law, the SBA published two new PPP Loan Forgiveness Applications, SBA Form 3508 (06/20), which can be downloaded here, ...
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Lease Issues in the COVID-19 Environment [Part 2]

The COVID-19 crisis has significantly impacted the ability of parties to satisfy their respective obligations under their commercial leases.  As mentioned in Part 1 of this series, many parties are discovering that the language of force majeure clauses often lacks the specificity to adequately address this unique situation.  Part 2 of this series explores the approaches being taken by parties to resolve the practical issues ...
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Lease Issues in the COVID-19 Environment [Part 1]

In the current COVID-19 crisis, attorneys are receiving numerous questions from landlords and tenants, as to their respective contractual obligations under their commercial leases.  Tenants are carefully analyzing the provisions of the lease to determine if any provisions therein could excuse or delay performance, particularly as it relates to the obligation to pay rent.  This article is Part 1 of a 2-article series and summarizes ...
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