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Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: Guidance in Implementing San Francisco Department of Public Health COVID-19 Health Screening Forms
Buchalter, September 2020

San Francisco’s Department of Public Health (“SFDPH”) issued yet-another update to its Shelter-in-Place Order, C19-07, on September 14, 2020 (now up to version “i”). This order has been frequently modified to reflect changes in other state and local directives, as more is learned about the disease and as more businesses are allowed to re-open...

Ninth Circuit Sharply Curtails Excess Insurers’ Ability to Challenge Propriety of Primary’s Exhaustion in AXIS Reinsurance Co. v. Northrop Grumman Corp.
Buchalter, September 2020

When a company is faced with defending itself against a large claim, it often requires the availability of insurance proceeds from not just the company’s primary insurer, but also from its excess insurance layers.  In this scenario, however, excess insurers sometimes will refuse to step in after exhaustion of the underlying insurance layers, arguing that the exhaustion of those underlying layers was wrongful due to payments for uncovered claims...

Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: Entrapment-by-Estoppel: A Potential Future Defense for Lenders in PPP Fraud Cases
Buchalter, September 2020

By: Joshua M. Robbins, Michael C. Flynn, and Robert S. Gillison The past decade has taught lenders much about regulatory enforcement risk.  In the fallout of the 2008 financial crisis and collapse of the housing and related markets, the Department of Justice and other agencies aggressively stepped up investigations of lenders seen as complicit in the misconduct of borrowers and others...

Hotel Bankruptcies: 8 Key Issues for Hospitality Advisors
Buchalter, September 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many hospitality professionals and their clients to confront bankruptcy, insolvency, and loan workout issues for the first time since the Great Recession.  Chapter 11 presents a host of unique issues for hotels and other hospitality businesses...

California Supreme Court Clarifies Bounds of Legitimate Competition Under Tort and Antitrust Law
Buchalter, September 2020

On August 3, 2020, the California Supreme Court issued its highly anticipated decision in Ixchel Pharma, LLC v. Biogen, Inc., clarifying the bounds of legitimate competition under California tort and antitrust law.  The Court’s ruling generally came down in favor of encouraging competition, reducing claims for tortious interference with contract, and decreasing the risk of litigation arising from normal competitive activity...

Newly Enacted California Consumer Financial Protection Law (AB 1864) Reorganizes and Renames Financial Institutions Regulator for Expanded Oversight of Certain Consumer Financial Services Innovation Sector
Buchalter, September 2020

By: Michael Flynn and Melissa Richards Introduction California has enacted a new California Consumer Protection Law (CCFPL), California Financial Code Section 90001 et seq.  The CCFPL will convert the Department of Business Oversight (DBO) into a new Department of Financial Protection and Innovation (DFPI).  AB 1864 was sent to the California Governor on September 4, 2020 for signature, and he is expected to sign within thirty (30) days...

Some Relief for Generators of Retail Hazardous Waste in Sight
Buchalter, September 2020

On September 1, the California legislature sent to the Governor amendments to California’s Hazardous Waste Control Law. Once signed by the Governor, AB 2920 will allow retail hazardous waste to be shipped on a “consolidated manifest.” This simplified procedure has been available for specific types of hazardous waste such as used oil, but this is the first time it has applied a broad, general category such as “retail hazardous waste...

Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: The Future of California Evictions in the COVID Era - California Judicial Council Votes to End Statewide Eviction Moratorium
Buchalter, September 2020

On Thursday, August 13, the California Judicial Council elected to rescind Emergency Rules 1 and 2 related to eviction and foreclosure actions in California applicable to both residential and commercial properties, effective September 1, 2020. Emergency Rules 1 and 2, previously put in place on April 6, prevented all unlawful detainer and foreclosure actions statewide, except in cases of public health or safety...

Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: Expansive New National COVID-19 Related Residential Eviction Moratorium Order Issued by the CDC
Buchalter, September 2020

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued an order titled “Temporary Halt in Residential Evictions To Prevent the Further Spread of COVID-19” (“Order”) forbidding evictions of residential tenants who do not exceed certain income levels (generally $99,000 for an individual), are unable to make full rental payments due to substantial loss of income, loss of job, or extraordinary medical expense, and have exhausted all available governmental sources o

Windfalls and Pitfalls of Pivoting Your Business Model in the New Business Environment
Buchalter, September 2020

It is no secret that the world has rapidly changed over the last several months. Many companies are reevaluating their business models to adjust to the challenges caused by the world-wide pandemic and to hopefully identify new business opportunities that may arise as a result of a new business environment...

Executive Order Payroll Tax Deferral: Guidance and Considerations
Buchalter, September 2020

On August 8, 2020, the President of the United States issued a Presidential Memorandum directing the Secretary of the Treasury to use his authority pursuant to section 7508A of the Internal Revenue Code to defer the withholding, deposit, and payment of certain payroll tax obligations for the remainder of 2020. In Notice 2020-65, the IRS provides guidance implementing the payroll tax deferral.  What wages are eligible?  Eligibility is subject to income limits...

Hotel Bankruptcies: Introduction to Critical Issues
Buchalter, August 2020

The global COVID-19 pandemic has devastated the hospitality industry.  Hotel occupancy rates have fallen greatly in many markets, with employee layoffs and property closures affecting even the largest and otherwise best performing hotels.  It is uncertain when the industry will recover.  Many hotel properties will require a chapter 11 bankruptcy case to successfully reorganize their debt obligations and operations and preserve the value of the business...

Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: HUD, FHFA, VA Announce Extensions of Foreclosure and Eviction Moratoriums to December 31, 2020
Buchalter, August 2020

On August 27, HUD announced that it is extending its Covid-related foreclosure and eviction moratoriums for FHA insured loans set to expire on August 31, until December 31, 2020, and issued a Mortgagee Letter implementing the extensions. On the same day, the Federal Housing Finance Agency announced that the single-family foreclosure and eviction moratoriums for Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, also set to expire on August 31, will be extended until December 31, 2020...

SEC Amends Definition of Accredited Investor
Buchalter, August 2020

On August 26, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) adopted long anticipated amendments to the “accredited investor” definition.  The SEC said that the amendments are intended to update and improve the definition to identify more effectively investors that have sufficient knowledge and expertise to participate in securities offerings that are not registered under the Securities Act of 1933...

CFPB Issues Proposed Rule to Create New Category of “Seasoned Qualified Mortgages”
Buchalter, August 2020

  On August, 18, 2020, the CFPB issued a new proposed rule to create a new category of “seasoned qualified mortgages” (Seasoned QMs) that would receive the safe harbor conclusive presumption of meeting the Ability to Repay standard. The proposed rule would allow certain loans that meet specified criteria and are held in portfolio by the lender for three years to qualify as QMs...

First Circuit Decision Underlines Risk of Criminal HIPAA Enforcement
Buchalter, August 2020

On August 6, 2020, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit affirmed the conviction of Massachusetts gynecologist Rita Luthra for criminal HIPAA violations and obstructing a health care investigation. Although such HIPAA prosecutions are uncommon, the case underscores the risks health care providers and others run when handling protected patient information and when speaking with government investigators...

How Businesses can Fight Back Against Online Scammers
Buchalter, August 2020

While many of us are working from home due to the current pandemic, criminals and scammers are also hard at work from home and have been increasingly more brazen since the stay-at-home orders have been put into effect. In popular media, we see television shows such as “90 Day Fiancé,” “Catfish: The TV Show,” and others depicting people being scammed by unscrupulous individuals online who are pretending to be someone they are not...

Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: Court Decision Expands Families First Coronavirus Response Act Coverage
Buchalter, August 2020

A recent New York federal court decision has called into question whether businesses may safely rely on Department of Labor guidance regarding the recently passed Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). The FFCRA provides employees of businesses with fewer than 500 employees with two temporary forms of paid leave—Emergency Paid Sick Leave and Emergency Family and Medical Leave...

Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: Main Street Lending Program: Federal Reserve Posts Amended Transaction Documents and Frequently Asked Questions
Buchalter, August 2020

On July 31st the Federal Reserve posted amended versions of a number of Main Street Lending Program (MSLP) transaction documents, including the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and Term Sheets for MSLP.  Many of the changes reflect recent announcements, such as the expansion of the program to include the Nonprofit Organization New Loan Facility (NONLF) and the Nonprofit Organization Expanded Loan Facility (NOELF).  Other changes, particularly to the FAQs, provide new guidance...

Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: Doing Business with a Customer in Bankruptcy in the Time of COVID-19: Administrative Expense Claims—Take Them to the Bank or Throw Them in the Write-Off Bin?
Buchalter, August 2020

It is no secret that business bankruptcies are surging in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, chapter 11 filings increased 26% in the first half of 2020,[1] and some expect the number of cases to increase even more in the coming months.[2] From retailers to airlines to telecommunications companies, few sectors of the economy are immune. As a result, more and more businesses will face the prospect of one or more of their customers filing chapter 11...

Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: Main Street Lending Program and Other Federal Reserve Emergency Lending Facilities Extended to December 31, 2020
Buchalter, July 2020

On July 28, the Federal Reserve announced that many of its emergency lending facilities, including the Main Street Lending Program’s New Loan Facility, Priority Loan Facility, Expanded Loan Facility, Nonprofit Organization New Loan Facility and Nonprofit Organization Expanded Loan Facility, are being extended to December 31, 2020.  The facilities were previously scheduled to be available until on or about September 30, 2020...

Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: Lenders May Submit PPP Forgiveness Applications to SBA on August 10; SBA Issues New Procedural Notice with Guidance for Lender Forgiveness Review/Submission
Buchalter, July 2020

On July 23, SBA announced that lenders may begin submitting PPP loan forgiveness requests to SBA on August 10.  To assist lenders, SBA issued a Procedural Notice with new guidance regarding lenders’ reviews of forgiveness applications.  The Notice may be found here:  https://www.sba.gov/sites/default/files/2020-07/5000-20038.pdf The Notice reaffirmed forgiveness guidance and rules previously issued...

From Frying Pan to Fire: Strategic Issues When Reimbursement Disputes Turn Into Criminal Investigations
Buchalter, July 2020

Early on the morning of June 13, 2017, over one hundred federal agents raided facilities across southern California belonging to behavioral health provider Sovereign Heath. The agents provided search warrants indicating that they were seeking evidence of fraudulent billing and kickbacks...

Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: Main Street Lending Program Expanded to Include Nonprofit Organizations
Buchalter, July 2020

The Federal Reserve has announced that the Main Street Lending Program will now be available to non-profits such as educational institutions, hospitals, and social service organizations, and has issued a set of Frequently Asked Questions regarding the new Nonprofit Organization New Loan Facility and Nonprofit Organization Expanded Loan Facility...

Buchalter COVID-19 Client Alert: Excusing Contractual Performance in Real Estate Agreements in the Age of COVID
Buchalter, July 2020

  Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, local municipalities and state governments throughout the country have implemented stay-at-home orders and mandated closures of businesses and restaurants to lower the spread of the disease. California, after having permitted much of the state to reopen businesses, has seen a recent spike in COVID-19 cases and on July 13th implemented a new statewide order to curb the increase, reimposing certain business closures...

 

 

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