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What Employers Need to Know About Michigan’s Latest Executive Order Protecting Workers
Dykema, August 2020

On August 27, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer released Executive Order 2020-172, entitled “Protecting workers who stay home, stay safe when they or their close contacts are sick,” which replaces Executive Order 2020-166. The new executive order is nearly identical to the one it replaces, with two important differences...

Are Parts of Paid COVID-19 Leave Regulations in Jeopardy? Federal Court Rejects Parts DOL’s FFCRA Regulations, Employers Brace for Possible Fallout
Dykema, August 2020

On Monday, August 3, 2020, a New York federal judge issued a decision invalidating portions of the DOL’s regulations implementing the Families First Coronavirus Relief Act (“FFCRA”). The decision’s impact changes the legal landscape employers confront as they strive to comply with the FFCRA—a landscape that is unstable as the DOL and the courts sort out the legality of the disputed regulations...

Governor Reimposes Restrictions in Northern Michigan
Dykema, July 2020

On July 29, 2020, Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order Nos. 2020-160 and 2020-161. Executive Order 2020-160 replaces the prior executive orders that address stay home, stay safe restrictions in Michigan. In general, this Order moves the State to a more uniform approach to business operations and restrictions...

One Week Left for Eligible Dental Providers to Apply for Provider Relief Funds
Dykema, July 2020

Eligible dental providers may now apply for Provider Relief Funds, but the deadline to do so, July 24, 2020, is quickly approaching. On July 10, 2020, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) announced an additional $4 billion in relief payments to healthcare providers and, notably, opened its provider portal to dental providers...

Mandatory Mask Requirements in Michigan—Executive Order No. 2020-147
Dykema, July 2020

Executive Order No. 2020-147 sets forth new face covering requirements for all individuals in Michigan as well as new requirements for any business open to the public. When is face covering required under Executive Order No...

Michigan Small Business Restart Program Accepting Grant Applications Starting July 15
Dykema, July 2020

The State of Michigan has allocated $100 million of CARES Act funding to implement the Michigan Small Business Restart Program to provide grants to Michigan businesses directly impacted by COVID-19. The grants, up to $20,000 each, will be administered by 15 Economic Development Organizations (EDOs) covering all 83 counties in the state. Participating EDOs are listed below...

Supreme Court Affirms Addition of .Com to Generic Term Renders Booking.com Registrable
Dykema, July 2020

In a decision contrary to current Patent and Trademark Office (“PTO”) rules, the United States Supreme Court has found the mark BOOKING.COM as a whole is not generic and that combining a generic term with “.com” does not necessarily result in a composite term that also is generic. Background Booking.com B.V. (“Booking.com”) sought to federally register the mark BOOKING.COM, and related variations, for travel services...

United States Congress Extends PPP Loan Application Deadline to August 8, 2020
Dykema, July 2020

On June 30, 2020, the Senate passed an extension of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to keep the program operating until August 8, 2020. On July 1, 2020, the House also approved the extension for the program which was set to end on June 30. The President is expected to sign the extension shortly...

PPP Loan Forgiveness and Review: Key Observations
Dykema, June 2020

PPP Loan Forgiveness IFR Revisions and Revised Application, Key Observations Part V Once again, the SBA is doling out guidance in small doses, solving some questions, creating new questions and leaving most questions still unanswered. On June 16, 2020, the SBA issued a revised PPP Loan Forgiveness Application, along wit hrelated instructions, and new PPP Loan Forgiveness Application Form 3508EZ, also with related instructions...

Presidential Proclamation Extends Ban on Entry of Immigrants; Adds H-1B, L-1 and J-1 Visa Holders
Dykema, June 2020

Following up on Dykema’s alert from June 18, 2020, President Trump signed a Proclamation that extends his April 22, 2020, 60-day ban on immigrant workers entering the United States until December 31, 2020. In addition, it also added those with H-1B, H-2B, L-1 and J-1 visas and any foreign national accompanying them to this ban. The Proclamation states this was done to address, in part, high unemployment levels due to the coronavirus pandemic...

Possible Presidential Proclamation to Limit Entry of H-1B, H-2B, L-1 and J-1 Visa Holders
Dykema, June 2020

Several reports, including one by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, indicate President Trump may issue a Proclamation limiting or prohibiting the entry into the United States of foreign nationals holding H-1B, H-2B, L-1 and J-1 visas. H-1Bs are used to employ foreign nationals in specialty occupations (those positions normally requiring at least a Bachelor’s Degree or its equivalent for entry into the field). H-2Bs are for temporary, non-agricultural workers...

U.S. Supreme Court Makes Pride Month History by Holding That Title VII Bars Job Discrimination Against LGBT+ Workers
Dykema, June 2020

Unexpectedly siding with the liberal wing of the Court, Justice Neil Gorsuch penned a 6-3 decision in Bostock v. Clayton County, holding that Title VII’s prohibition on sex-based discrimination also covers sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination. The Court’s decision dealt a historic victory for proponents of expanding gay and trans protections for workers under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964...

Proposed Legislation Would Create New Protections for Michigan Residential Borrowers and Tenants During States of Emergency
Dykema, June 2020

In response to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and its resulting adverse effects on the income levels of Michigan residents, a package of bills (2020 SB 912 through 2020 SB 917) was introduced earlier this month to provide additional protections for residential tenants and owner-occupants during a declared state of emergency...

IRS Provides Relief for Projects Eligible for Investment Tax Credit and Production Tax Credit
Dykema, June 2020

On May 27, 2020, the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) issued Notice 2020-41 (“Notice”) providing COVID-19 relief for businesses seeking to qualify for the production tax credit for renewable energy facilities under Section 45 (“PTC”) of the Internal Revenue Code (the “Code”) and investment tax credit for energy property under Section 48 (“ITC”) of the Code...

PPP Loan Forgiveness and Review: Key Observations
Dykema, June 2020

PPP Loan Forgiveness Expansion: Key Observations Part III On June 5, 2020, the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act of 2020 (the “Act”) was signed into law by the President. It provides for a number of liberalizations of the terms of the Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”)...

Notice 2020-39: IRS Provides Relief to Qualified Opportunity Funds and Investors Related to COVID-19 Pandemic
Dykema, June 2020

The Novogradac Opportunity Zones Working Group (the “Novogradac Group”) recently wrote to the Commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service (the “Commissioner”) and the Assistant Secretary for Tax Policy of the Department of the Treasury...

Tax Deferral of Employer’s Portion of Social Security Taxes Under Section 2302 of the CARES Act Now Available for PPP Borrowers Without Exception
Dykema, June 2020

Pursuant to the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act of 2020, which was enacted into law on June 5, 2020, taxpayers who take out a loan under the Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) of the Coronavirus, Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”), all or a portion of which is subsequently forgiven, may now also take advantage of the tax deferral of the employer’s portion of the Social Security taxes under Section 2302 of the CARES Act...

Executive Order No 2020-110: Three Things to Remember as When Planning to Reopen
Dykema, June 2020

With Executive Order No. 2020-110, Governor Whitmer has lifted the stay-at-home order and allowed most businesses in Michigan to reopen—at least to some extent. There are still several sectors that are ordered to stay closed to the public, including non-essential personal care services (hair, nail, massage, etc.), and the Executive Order contains several other restrictions imposed on specific industries...

Changing PPP Guidance Reinforces Need for Strong Compliance
Dykema, June 2020

Through the recently issued Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan Forgiveness Application and Interim Final Rule on Loan Forgiveness, the Small Business Association (SBA) has once again demonstrated that the contours and requirements of the PPP program are constantly evolving. The SBA’s recent Interim Final Rule on SBA Loan Review Procedures provides some insights on how the SBA will enforce PPP qualification and forgiveness requirements...

PPP Loan Forgiveness and Review: Key Observations - Part II
Dykema, May 2020

The SBA issued anInterim Final Rule(“IFR”) regarding PPP loan forgiveness on May 22, 2020, to supplement thePPP Loan Forgiveness Applicationand instructions issued one week earlier. While the new IFR did not provide a great deal of new guidance, below is a list of our key observations, which supplements our prior observations on the application itself, which are repeated at the end of this Alert...

Return To Work Guide: An Employer’s Post-Pandemic Handbook
Dykema, May 2020

As many states and municipalities begin lifting stay at home orders and implementing steps for a phased reopening of businesses, employers should be developing a written “game plan” to minimize the risks of transitioning from a COVID-19 complete or partial shutdown to resumption of business as usual, or business in the post-Pandemic workplace...

PPP Loan Forgiveness Application: Key Observations
Dykema, May 2020

The SBA, in consultation with the U.S. Department of Treasury, issued the Paycheck Protection Program Loan ForgivenessApplicationand related instructions on May 15, 2020. While the application and instructions answer many of our questions about PPP loan forgiveness, it leaves many others open. Treasury has promised that the SBA also will soon issue regulations and guidance that we hope will address these questions...

Still Time to Appeal: Executive Order and Bills Aim to Extend Property Tax Assessment Appeal Dates in Michigan and Provide Additional Tax Relief in Illinois
Dykema, May 2020

The 2020 appeal season is moving and changing quickly, so be sure to not miss any filing deadlines. The deadline for filing petitions with the Michigan Tax Tribunal is set by statute as May 31. On May 14, 2020, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-87 (the “Order”), to extend the deadline to protest 2020 property tax assessments to grant some amount of relief to individuals and businesses amid the coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis...

Employer Considerations for Employee Return to Work
Dykema, May 2020

Dykema’s Labor & Employment Practice Group created a Q&A overview addressing best practices for employers to consider when businesses return to work. The document discusses frequently asked questions concerning employer recalls, pay and benefits, medical documentation, personal protective equipment (PPE) requirements, and more...

Michigan’s New COVID-19 Workplace Safety Rules: Enforcement of Regulatory Compliance May Increase – Is Your Business Compliant?
Dykema, May 2020

As more and more of Michigan’s economy is being reopened, Governor Whitmer set forth required workplace safeguards in a separate and standalone executive order. Executive Order No...

USCIS Proposes 10% Surcharge on Filing Fees
Dykema, May 2020

The USCIS on Friday, May 15, sent a request to Congress for $1.2 billion in emergency funding, proposing to pay it back with a 10% surcharge on application filing fees. The immigration service is entirely funded by these filing fees and has seen a significant drop in applications due to the coronavirus pandemic. It said in the statement it expects a 61% drop in revenue through the end of the fiscal year...

Is Your Business Ready to Reopen? Five Regulatory Items You Should Consider as Your Business Reopens in Michigan
Dykema, May 2020

Phased reopening of the economy is beginning all over the country. Unfortunately, there is no consistent or uniform way in which reopening is being handled. Every business should closely review not only state-level restrictions as they reopen but also local-level restrictions and federal guidance as well. Compliance with these requirements is not only important from a regulatory standpoint but also may help limit liability...

IRS Updates Guidance on Employee Retention Credits – What Employers Need To Know
Dykema, May 2020

On April 29, 2020, the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) issued updated guidance in the form of 94 Frequently Asked Questions (“FAQs”) in connection with the employee retention credits (“ERC” or “credits”) which are available to eligible employers pursuant to Section 2301 of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Recovery Act, Pub. L. No. 116-136 (“CARES Act”)...

Bringing Employees Back to Work Post-COVID-19: What Is Michigan’s Work Share Program and Should Employers Take Advantage of It?
Dykema, May 2020

As Michigan employers begin to think about how many employees to bring back to work, one option to consider is Michigan’s Work Share program, whereby total work hours are spread across a large group of employees as opposed to having fewer employees return to work on a full-time basis...

Automotive Manufacturing Workers Allowed to Resume Work Next Week in Michigan
Dykema, May 2020

Michigan Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-77 today, permitting manufacturing workers to resume work as part of the MI Safe Start Plan. Manufacturing workers, including workers in the automotive industry, are allowed to resume work on May 11, 2020, one week ahead of the planned restart date of certain Michigan automakers. See Executive Order No. 2020-77, Section 10(k)...

Paycheck Protection Program Loan Forgiveness Not Impacted by Employees Who Won’t Return to Work, If Properly Documented
Dykema, May 2020

As borrowers use their loan proceeds from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to continue or restore payroll and call back laid-off employees, they may encounter reluctance or refusal by employees to return to work, which could impede borrower’s ability to obtain full forgiveness on their PPP loan...

Dykema Real Estate and Tax Alert: 2020 Tax Appeal Season Is Upon Us, and Deadlines Are Quickly Approaching
Dykema, May 2020

Deadline to File Appeal With the Michigan Tax Tribunal Is Quickly Approaching The deadline for filing petitions for new 2020 tax appeals with the Michigan Tax Tribunal is May 31, 2020...

Federal Reserve Updates and Expands Loan Options of Main Street Lending Program
Dykema, May 2020

On April 30, 2020, in response to public input, the Federal Reserve Board announced it is expanding the loan options available to businesses under the Main Street Lending Program and published a related FAQ...

Expenses Paid by PPP Loan, Which Is Subsequently Forgiven, Are Not Deductible
Dykema, May 2020

On April 30, 2020, the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) issued Notice 2020-32, 2020-21 I.R.B. 1, providing guidance on the deductibility of certain expenses incurred pursuant to the Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, Pub. L. No. 116-135 (“CARES Act”)...

Easing of Restrictions on Michigan Construction Industry to Go Into Effect on May 7, 2020
Dykema, May 2020

The fight against COVID-19 has had a serious impact on businesses across the nation, and the construction industry is no exception. May 1, 2020, marked a step toward a new normal as Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-70 easing restrictions on construction projects. The Governor’s office also issued a press release explaining how the Order applies to work on construction projects...

Modified Net Operating Loss Rules — Taxpayer Considerations
Dykema, May 2020

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act of March 27, 2020, (“CARES Act”) amended Section 172 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (the “Code”) with respect to net operating losses (“NOL”) arising in 2018, 2019 and 2020 by restoring some of the favorable provisions applicable to NOLs prior to the enactment of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (“TCJA”)...

New Version of I-9 Required as of May 1, 2020
Dykema, April 2020

Dykema would like to remind U.S. employers that they must use the October 21, 2019, version of the I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification form beginning May 1, 2020. Since January 31, 2020, employers were allowed to use either the July 17, 2017, or October 21, 2019, version of the form. These dates are indicated in mm/dd/yy format in its bottom left corner. The Form I-9 is used to confirm the identity and employment authorization of people hired as employees by U.S. employers...

Illinois Supreme Court Order Limits Freezes on Judgment Debtor Bank Accounts
Dykema, April 2020

As the need for consumer protections amidst the COVID-19 pandemic continues to grow, the Illinois Supreme Court is helping to provide those protections. In its latest move, the high court has ordered limits to freezes on personal bank accounts...

IRS Issues Guidance for COVID-19 Related Mortgage Loan Forbearance and Modification
Dykema, April 2020

On April 13, 2020, the Internal Revenue Service (the “IRS”) issued Revenue Procedure 2020-26 (the “Revenue Procedure”) providing guidance to lenders and loan servicers offering relief to borrowers with federally-backed residential and multifamily mortgage loans, including relief mandated under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, Pub. L. No. 116-136 (the “CARES Act”), as well as similar state programs...

Paycheck Protection Program SBA FAQ 31 – What Does the “Necessity” Certification Mean Today?
Dykema, April 2020

In a turn of events, likely in response to the headlines relating to companies and others returning PPP loan proceeds, on April 23, 2020, the Small Business Administration (SBA) and Department of the Treasury updated the Paycheck Protection Program Loans Frequently Asked Questions to include Question 31, which has been seen by many as a change in eligibility. The CARES Act specifically suspended the SBA 7(a) loan program requirement that borrowers be unable to obtain credit elsewhere...

What Do Eased Restrictions of Michigan’s Reaffirmed Stay-At-Home Measures Mean for Your Business?
Dykema, April 2020

On April 24, 2020, Governor Whitmer reaffirmed the stay-at-home measures set forth in Executive Order 2020-42, amended the scope of that order, and extended the duration of such measures through May 15, 2020 (unless modified earlier). While many of the restrictions from her prior executive orders remain in place, Executive Order 2020-59 includes some easing of in-person operation restrictions as well as some corresponding requirements for those operations...

Industry-Specific Considerations for Energy Companies Contemplating PPP Loans
Dykema, April 2020

With an additional $310 billion in funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) signed into law, energy companies should consider applying for PPP loans in order to maintain daily operations during the COVID-19 crisis. Generally speaking, companies may receive a maximum loan amount of the lesser of two-and-a-half times their average monthly payroll costs, or $10 million...

Recent Supreme Court of Pennsylvania Ruling May Impact Interpretation of Force Majeure in Future COVID-19 Disputes
Dykema, April 2020

A recent decision by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania concerning a challenge to Governor Tom Wolf’s executive order relating to COVID-19 could impact disputes nationwide that arise out of the pandemic and involve a determination of whether COVID-19 constitutes a “natural disaster” or other like term within the context of force majeure clauses. In its April 13, 2020, decision inFriends of Devito v...

DOL Issues More FFCRA Compliance Guidance on Paid Leaves
Dykema, April 2020

Guidance Focuses on Concurrent Leave Issues, Hours to be Paid During Leaves, and Regular Rates of Pay Applicable Now that covered employers are providing paid leaves under the Families First Coronavirus Act (the “FFCRA”), more questions about the FFCRA’s nuances are surfacing...

President Trump Issues Proclamation Barring Intending Immigrants From U.S. for 60 Days
Dykema, April 2020

After stating he planned on issuing an Executive Order earlier this week, President Trump yesterday issued a proclamation barring intending immigrants from the United States for 60 days beginning at 11:50 p.m. on April 23, 2020. It states it is intended to help U.S. workers facing high levels of unemployment due to the Coronavirus...

Michigan Department of Treasury Further Extends State Income Tax Relief
Dykema, April 2020

On Friday, April 17, 2020, The Michigan Department of Treasury issued two departmental notices; a Notice of Automatic Extension of State and Income Tax Filing Deadlines (the “Notice of Automatic Extension”) and a Notice Regarding Electronic Requests for Informal Conferences...

Compliance for PPP Loans: Different Questions for Different Lenders
Dykema, April 2020

As all lenders know by now, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act’s (“CARES Act”) guaranteed Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) loans are the key piece of economic relief for small businesses during the COVID-19 crisis...

President Trump Announces 60-Day Pause in Issuing Green Cards
Dykema, April 2020

Following up on his recent tweet to temporarily halt all immigration to the United States due to the coronavirus pandemic, President Trump announced his upcoming Executive Order would be limited to those people seeking permanent resident status in the United States (“green cards”) and would last for 60 days. This will apparently not apply to those seeking to enter the United States on non-immigrant visas...

Michigan Tech Start-Up Stabilization Fund Now Accepting Applications for Early-Stage Tech Company Funds
Dykema, April 2020

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation has announced the Tech Startup Stabilization Fund—a $3 million fund that will provide capital and support for Michigan tech startups impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. ID Ventures is administering the fund and accepting applications from tech startups across the state at TSSFund.com...

U.S. Chamber’s Save Small Business Fund Accepting Grant Applications Starting April 20
Dykema, April 2020

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation is sponsoring the Save Small Business Fund—a grantmaking initiative offering short-term relief for small employers who are struggling during the COVID-19 outbreak. The fund will provide $5,000 grants to small employers in the United States and its territories that must be applied toward business expenses...

Need to Address COVID-19 Compliance Matters Underscored by New Pandemic Inspector General
Dykema, April 2020

The COVID-19 crisis has triggered an unprecedented response of federal and state relief programs to provide health care resources and economic relief. Once the country moves past the immediate crisis, the government will take a hard look at emergency payments. Along with $2 trillion in relief, the CARES Act established a new law enforcement authority within the Treasury Department: the Special Inspector General for Pandemic Recovery (the SIGPR)...

Faith-Based Organizations Provided an Exemption to Affiliation Rules Under the PPP
Dykema, April 2020

Paycheck Protection Program On March 27, 2020, the President signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “Act”) to provide emergency assistance for individuals, families, and businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic...

Employers Beware: COVID-19 Will Not Excuse Wage or Labor Fixing Agreements
Dykema, April 2020

The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) have made it clear that they will act to protect employees on the front lines of the battle against COVID-19. On the one hand, as we explained in a prior client alert, they previously announced pre-clearance procedures and other guidelines intended to make it easier for companies to collaborate in legitimate, pro-competitive ways...

Illinois Suspension of Consumer Debt Collection Measures Takes Effect
Dykema, April 2020

In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor J.B. Pritzker has provided relief to Illinois consumers’ pocketbooks. On April 14, 2020, the Governor issued Executive Order in Response to COVID-19 No. 23 (“Executive Order 23”). The stated purpose of Executive Order 23 is to ensure that Illinois residents have funds for essential items such as food, medicine, housing, and transportation by temporarily suspending certain consumer debt collection measures...

Treasury Further Expands Relief for Taxpayers in Notice 2020-23
Dykema, April 2020

On Thursday, April 9, 2020, the U.S. Department of the Treasury issued Notice 2020-23 (the “Notice”), updating and expanding the relief granted by Notices 2020-18 and 2020-20. Notice 2020-23 postpones tax filing and payment deadlines until July 15, 2020, for many taxpayers in order to grant some amount of relief to individuals, businesses, non-profit organizations and trusts/estates amid the coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis...

Federal Reserve Announces New Main Street Lending Programs
Dykema, April 2020

On April 9, 2020, the Federal Reserve announced that it was taking additional actions to provide up to $2.3 trillion in loans to support the U.S. economy...

IRS Allows Higher Deductible Interest Expense and Accelerated Depreciation for Real Property Trade & Farming Businesses
Dykema, April 2020

On April 10, 2020, the Internal Revenue Service (the “IRS”) issued Revenue Procedure 2020-22 to provide guidance related to business interest expense limitations and elections available for certain real property trade and farming businesses under Section 163(j)(7) of the Internal Revenue Code (the “Code”)...

Michigan Temporarily Embraces 21st Century Virtual Technology Document Signing
Dykema, April 2020

On Wednesday, April 8, 2020, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-41 (the “Order”), which relaxes the witness and notary requirements for documents that would otherwise require in-person witnessing and/or notarization, such as Michigan estate planning documents, executed during the Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic...

Partnerships Are Eligible for Relief
Dykema, April 2020

On April 8, 2020, the Internal Revenue Service (the “IRS”) issued Revenue Procedure 2020-23, which allows eligible partnerships to file amended partnership returns for taxable years beginning in 2018 and 2019 in order to take advantage of the various tax incentives provided under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”)...

Tax Incentives Under the CARES Act
Dykema, April 2020

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, H.R. 748 (the “CARES Act”), signed into law by President Trump on March 27, 2020, provides considerable relief for individuals and businesses in the form of financial assistance and tax-related benefits. Below is a short description of the tax benefits available for businesses, including employers and self-employed individuals under the CARES Act...

Nursing Home Compliance Under the COVID-19 Microscope
Dykema, April 2020

Nursing homes have been on the front lines throughout the COVID-19 pandemic as they care for the persons most at risk. In an effort to improve safety and curb the spread of COVID-19, federal and state authorities are relaxing certain compliance obligations. Despite this regulatory latitude, nursing facilities should remain aware that federal and state agencies continue to closely monitor nursing home compliance...

DOJ Won’t Challenge Collaborative Efforts of FEMA and Medical Suppliers to Provide Emergency Supplies
Dykema, April 2020

On Saturday, April 4, 2020, the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) issued a business review letter to a number of providers of Personal Protective Equipment (“PPE”) and pharmaceutical products, stating that the DOJ “presently does not intend to challenge” their efforts to expedite and increase manufacturing, sourcing, and distribution of PPE and medications in connection with Project Airbridge...

Benefit Plan Implications of the CARES Act
Dykema, April 2020

On March 27, 2019, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “Act”) was signed by President Trump. The Act provides significant relief for employee benefit plan participants and includes both required and discretionary changes. Plan sponsors should immediately review their benefit plans to ensure that amendments are properly and timely implemented to ensure that their plans continue to operate in accordance with applicable law...

IP Filing Deadlines Extended Under CARES Act
Dykema, April 2020

Under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Director may modify certain patent and trademark-related deadlines where the COVID-19 outbreak has either prejudiced applicants’ rights or interfered with the filing of a document or fee payment. The Acting Register of the Copyright Office is also granted expanded authority under the CARES Act for modifying certain copyright-related deadlines...

Ironing Out The Details: The Department of Labor Updates and Adds to Its FFCRA Guidance FAQs
Dykema, April 2020

As employers try to comply with the new Families First Coronavirus Response Act’s (FFCRA) paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave requirements, the Department of Labor has thrown them a curveball by quietly changing the answers to some of its Guidance about the FFCRA as well as adding 19 more FAQs to its prior compendium...

Michigan's Governor Issues Executive Order Creating Protected Class of COVID-19 Positive Employees
Dykema, April 2020

  In an apparent attempt to further reduce the spread of COVID-19 in Michigan, on Friday, April 3, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-36, which provides protection to all employees who stay home when they are at “particular risk” of infecting others with COVID-19...

DOJ and FTC Issue Joint Antitrust Statement Regarding Collaboration During COVID-19 Crisis
Dykema, April 2020

Even though the COVID-19 crisis has shuttered many government and commercial activities, the nation’s antitrust regulators are still very much open for business...

CARES Act Offers Liquidity to Eligible Businesses and Mid-Sized Companies (500 - 10,000 employees)
Dykema, April 2020

Insight on Eligibility and Requirements for Obtaining Financial Assistance For Mid-Sized Companies and Eligible Businesses (other than Air Carriers and Businesses Critical to MaintainingNational Security) The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”) provides for various loans, loan guaranties and other forms of financial assistance to U.S. businesses both small and large and in specific industries and sectors...

State of California and City of Los Angeles Offer Businesses Additional Coronavirus Relief as Loans and Highlight Existing Loan Programs for Small Businesses
Dykema, April 2020

The State of California and the City of Los Angeles are providing emergency assistance for California small businesses. These grants and loans are separate from incentives and programs being offered by the U.S. Small Business Administration. The State is also reminding businesses of existing small business loan programs that affected businesses can utilize. Information about the programs and how to apply is set forth below. State of California Loan Programs 1...

In the Nick of Time: Department of Labor Issues Temporary Regulations Interpreting the Families First Coronavirus Response Act
Dykema, April 2020

On April 1, the DOL provided employers with further clarity on the FFCRA by publishing temporary regulations. These regulations will be effective from April 1, 2020, until December 31, 2020—the same effective period of the FFCRA. Also relevant to employers, the IRS issued guidance regarding the FFCRA tax credit...

D.C. Circuit Addresses E-Discovery Costs in False Claims Act Litigation
Dykema, April 2020

On March 27, 2020, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia addressed the question of discovery costs in a long-running False Claims Act case,U.S. ex rel. Barko v. Halliburton (No. 19-7064, March 2020) (“Barko”). In Barko, a former employee claimed that an affiliate of Halliburton, Kellogg Brown & Root Services (KBR), inflated costs and received kickbacks from subcontractors during the Iraq war during the early to mid-2000s...

In the Nick of Time: Department of Labor Issues Regulations Interpreting the Families First Coronavirus Response Act
Dykema, April 2020

On April 1, the DOL provided employers with further clarity on the FFCRA by publishing temporary regulations. These regulations will be effective from April 1, 2020, until December 31, 2020—the same effective period of the FFCRA. Also relevant to employers, the IRS issued guidance regarding the FFCRA tax credit...

SBA Issues Interim Final Rule for the Paycheck Protection Program
Dykema, April 2020

On April 2, 2020, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) issued an interim final rule, providing additional guidance on the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Click here to read the full text of the Interim Final Rule. Here are some of the highlights of new and/or clarified information from the previous guidance issued by Treasury and SBA and the text of the CARES Act: Eligibility Only U.S...

Treasury Issues New Paycheck Protection Program Application Forms for Borrowers and Lenders
Dykema, April 2020

On April 2, 2020, the U.S. Department of the Treasury issued afinal borrower applicationand provided lenders with therequired datathe federal government will collect electronically to guarantee the loans. The lender application form requires the lender to certify they have gathered the requisite information from the applicant, as outlined in the updated borrower application form...

Supplemental H-2B Rule Placed On Hold
Dykema, April 2020

The USCIS has announced, in a tweet, that its proposed rule that would have authorized up to 35,000 new H-2B visas has been placed on hold and no new visas will be issued due to the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The tweet states: To clear up various misreporting – DHS’s rule on the H-2B cap is on hold pending review due to present economic circumstances. No additional H-2B visas will be released until further notice...

Food Law and Safety During COVID-19
Dykema, April 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has impacted the food industry, just as it has many others. The good news is that food-to-person transmission of the disease does not seem to be a risk. The challenge remains keeping workers safe from airborne and surface transmission. However, the FDA and the USDA have provided guidance and recommendations to food producers to deal with COVID-19, links to which have been provided below. The guidance focuses on stopping the person-to-person spread of the disease...

USCIS Extends Office Closures Until May 4, 2020
Dykema, April 2020

The USCIS has announced it will extend its suspension of in-person services at its field offices, asylum offices, and application support centers (ASCs) until May 4, 2020. It has also indicated it may extend these closures beyond that date if needed. USCIS will continue to provide limited emergency services during these closures...

Treasury Department Releases Preliminary PPP Guidance and Application
Dykema, April 2020

On March 31, 2020, the U.S. Department of the Treasury, which is supporting the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) in administering the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), and SBA issued preliminary guidance on the program and made available the form of application...

Treasury Amps Up the Relief in Notice 2020-20 for Gift and GST Taxes
Dykema, March 2020

On Friday, March 27, 2020, the U.S. Department of the Treasury issued Notice 2020-20, which postpones the filing and payment deadline for any taxpayer who is required to file Form 709 (U.S. Gift and Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax Return) or who has Federal gift or generation-skipping transfer tax payments due on April 15, 2020...

As Employers Work Towards Compliance, The Department of Labor Provides Third Guidance Regarding the Families First Coronavirus Relief Act
Dykema, March 2020

It seems the DOL has stopped sleeping these days, but that means more guidance for employers. In itsQs&As 38-59interpreting the Families First Coronavirus Relief Act (FFCRA), the DOL shed light on the small business exemption, employees who can be exempted for the FFCRA leave provisions, and the interplay of the FFCRA and the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). The FFCRA takes effect on April 1, 2020, so this guidance is, in a word, timely. Here are some highlights...

State of Illinois and City of Chicago Offer Businesses Additional Coronavirus Relief as Loans and Grants
Dykema, March 2020

The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (the Department) and the City of Chicago (the City) are providing emergency assistance for Illinois small businesses. These grants and loans are separate from incentives and programs being offered by the U.S. Small Business Administration. Information about the programs and how to apply is set forth below...

Michigan Income Tax Deadlines Postponed by Governor Whitmer’s Executive Order 2020-26
Dykema, March 2020

On Friday, March 27, 2020, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-26 (the “Order”), postponing tax filing and payment deadlines for Michigan taxpayers in order to grant some amount of relief to individuals and businesses amid the Coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis...

Updated Summary of the Paycheck Protection Program Established by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act
Dykema, March 2020

The CARES Act has now been passed by both the House and the Senate and signed into law by the President on March 27, 2020. One of the highlights of the CARES Act for small businesses is the establishment of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)...

A Guide to FEMA Public Assistance Amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic
Dykema, March 2020

Much like the Spring tornadoes that tear through the Midwest each year leaving damage in their wake, COVID-19 is silently tearing through the entire United States leaving a wake of destruction that has and will continue to affect state and local governmental entities for months, if not years, to come...

Leasing Considerations During COVID-19 Pandemic
Dykema, March 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic is having a wide-ranging impact on the U.S. real estate industry, particularly on the relationship between landlords and tenants. In order to better understand impending risks, both landlords and tenants should review their leases and insurance policies and consult real estate counsel before taking action. A sampling of leasing issues arising during the COVID-19 pandemic is set forth below...

Additional Coronavirus Relief Available to Michigan Businesses as Loans or Grants
Dykema, March 2020

In Michigan, additional coronavirus relief resources are available through the Michigan Small Business Relief Program established by the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) and administered by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) as either loans or grants. Separately from relief offered by the U.S...

Summary of the Employee Retention Credit Provision of the CARES Act (Section 2301)
Dykema, March 2020

On March 25, 2020, the U.S. Senate voted to approve the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Securities (CARES) Act, an economic stimulus package addressing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic (the “Act”). The U.S. House of Representatives is expected to approve the Act in its current form, with the President signing it into law shortly thereafter...

Food Law and Safety During COVID-19
Dykema, March 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has impacted the food industry, just as it has many others. The good news is that food-to-person transmission of the disease does not seem to be a risk. The challenge remains keeping workers safe from airborne and surface transmission. However, the FDA and the USDA have provided guidance and recommendations to food producers to deal with COVID-19, links to which have been provided below. The guidance focuses on stopping the person-to-person spread of the disease...

Employers Have Questions, the Department of Labor Has (Some) Answers: The DOL Provides its First Guidance Regarding the Families First Coronavirus Response Act
Dykema, March 2020

Late in the day on March 24, the DOL provided its first round of guidance regarding the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). While the guidanceprovides some clarity for employers, many important questions are left unanswered. When can employees take advantage of the benefits of the FFCRA? The FFCRA takes effect on April 1 and expires on December 31, 2020...

Dykema Provides Preliminary Advice While Awaiting Final Approval of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act
Dykema, March 2020

The CARES Act will establish the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)...

SEC Extends Conditional Exemption From Reporting for Public Companies Affected by COVID-19 and Provides Disclosure Guidance
Dykema, March 2020

On March 25, 2020, the SEC issued an order granting temporary relief from the filing deadlines for certain SEC filings due between March 1, 2020, and July 1, 2020. This order supersedes the SEC’s March 4 order...

COVID-19 Quick Reference Guide – State By State Treatment of Business Essentiality
Dykema, March 2020

Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) is affecting companies across the nation and around the world in a variety of ways. Dykema is closely monitoring the legal ramifications of the crisis and evaluating the potential impact on businesses in a wide variety of industries...

Loan Modifications Related to COVID-19
Dykema, March 2020

On March 22, 2020, the Federal Reserve Board, the FDIC, the National Credit Union Administration, the Office of the Comptroller of Currency, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and state banking regulators (collectively, the “agencies”) published an interagency statement on loan modifications and reporting for financial institutions working with customers affected by COVID-19...

Question and Answer: Employee Benefits Triage Amid COVID-19
Dykema, March 2020

Dykema has launched a COVID-19 Resource Center to keep our clients up to date on the most recent legal, business and health guidance surrounding the novel coronavirus and how to navigate their businesses through uncertain times. Various firm practitioners are providing timely content that aims at providing guidance for employer’s current issues as well as those unforeseen items that have yet to arise...

COVID-19 Immigration Updates
Dykema, March 2020

Federal authorities have recently issued a large number of new policies, guidance, etc., in response to the coronavirus pandemic. These include the following: Flexibility in Submitting Required Signatures on Applications The USCIS has announced it will accept application forms with reproduced original signatures...

COVID-19 and the False Claims Act: Recipients of Federal Funds Need to Be Vigilant About Compliance
Dykema, March 2020

Households and businesses across the country continue to take safety precautions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, the federal government is preparing an unprecedented federal response to the health, safety and economic challenges. In the coming weeks, we expect a wide variety of private businesses to partner with federal agencies and receive funds to address the health crisis...

Second Dose of Medicine from Treasury for Coronavirus Relief
Dykema, March 2020

On Friday, March 20, 2020, the Department of the Treasury issued Notice 2020-18 (which supersedes Notice 2020-17 issued two days prior), postponing tax filing and payment deadlines for many taxpayers in order to grant some amount of relief to individuals and businesses amid the Coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis...

What Does The Michigan Stay Home Executive Order Mean For Your In-Person Energy Operations?
Dykema, March 2020

  On March 23, 2020, in order to curb the spread of COVID-19 in Michigan, Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-21 (“EO 2020-21”), which orders all Michigan residents to stay at home or in their place of residence unless exempted until April 13, 2020, at 11:59 p.m...

Executive Order 2020-21: Stay Home Order—What Does This Mean For Your In-Person Operations?
Dykema, March 2020

On March 23, 2020, in order to curb the spread of COVID-19 in Michigan, Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-21 (“EO 2020-21”), which orders all Michigan residents to stay at home or in their place of residence unless exempted until April 13, 2020, at 11:59 p.m. To this end, EO 2020-21 also orders that no person or entity may conduct a business or conduct operations that require workers to leave their homes or residences unless that entity qualifies for an exemption...

Federal Tax Relief Is on the Way: Notice 2020-17 Issued in Response to COVID-19
Dykema, March 2020

On Wednesday, March 18, 2020, the Department of the Treasury issued Notice 2020-17, postponing payment deadlines for many taxpayers in order to grant some amount of relief to businesses and individuals amid the Coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis. The Notice provides many taxpayers with the ability to defer federal income tax payments otherwise due by April 15, 2020, but does not postpone or alter the April 15 filing deadline or estimated payments due June 15, 2020...

Executive Order 2020-15 – Governor Whitmer Grants Public Bodies The Flexibility to Meet Electronically During COVID-19 Emergency
Dykema, March 2020

On March 18, 2020, Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-15 which permits all public bodies in the State of Michigan, with the exception of the State Legislature, to meet during the COVID-19 state of emergency (“COVID-19 Emergency”) by electronic means until April 15, 2020...

Families First Coronavirus Response Act Signed Into Law, Imposing Paid Leave Requirements On Small And Medium Employers Beginning April 2, 2020
Dykema, March 2020

On March 18, 2020, President Trump signed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”) a few hours after the Senate approved the bill...

What Do You Do When Your Contract Does Not Contain A Force Majeure Clause? [Part II]
Dykema, March 2020

As the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues to spread rapidly throughout the United States—and the world—commercial relationships are being thrown into disarray, resulting in the disruption of supply chains, cancellations of events, and closures of restaurants and other businesses. Several states have declared a state of emergency (including banning large group gatherings and mandating that certain business shutter for the time being)...

House of Representatives Passes Far-Ranging Paid Sick and Family Leave Legislation for Workers Impacted by COVID-19
Dykema, March 2020

  On March 14, 2020, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”). While the bill has not yet been passed by the Senate, the White House has indicated that it supports and intends to sign the bill into law once the Senate has an opportunity to address its provisions, which will likely be sometime early this week...

Are Your Corporate Documents COVID-19 Ready?
Dykema, March 2020

With many companies facing increased teleworking, supply chain issues, or health uncertainties because of COVID-19, your corporate documents and policies must be ready to address potential issues that arise...

Governor Whitmer Signs Executive Order Imposing Temporary Enhanced Restrictions on Price Gouging in Michigan
Dykema, March 2020

On March 15, 2020, Governor Whitmer issued an Executive Order, effective 9 a.m. March 16, 2020, through April 13, 2020, imposing two restrictions aimed at preventing price gouging during the COVID-19 emergency. These restrictions, issued pursuant to her powers after declaring a State of Emergency on March 10, 2020, apply to offers or sales of products in Michigan. The first restriction applies only to resales of products acquired from retailers...

Considerations for Financial Institutions Regarding Security Procedures for a Remote Workforce
Dykema, March 2020

We regularly work with financial institutions to navigate the challenges of implementing, maintaining, and using security procedures for commercial customers’ use of treasury management services. Security procedures are an integral part of the relationship between the financial institution and its commercial customers...

Avoid Antitrust and Price Gouging Pitfalls In Your Coronavirus Response
Dykema, March 2020

The coronavirus disease continues to cause headaches for businesses all over the globe. Travel restrictions are leading to cancellations of small meetings and large-scale conferences; factory shutdowns are causing massive supply shortages; employees are being told to stay home from work. Whatever challenges you face in these uncertain times, it is important to remember that your business is not immune from government scrutiny...

Oil & Gas Industry: Are You Prepared to Deal With COVID-19?
Dykema, March 2020

The price of oil—already hammered by market conditions—took another stumble in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak with no immediate relief in sight. Accordingly, the Oil & Gas Industry must prepare for the looming wave of oncoming legal issues, which will affect every sector of the market. This alert contains recommended actions for industry stakeholders...

The Present Coronavirus Epidemic and the Law of Force Majeure: How to Assess Options
Dykema, March 2020

Introduction The supply chain effects from the global spread of the novel coronavirus have been building for nearly two months, and are expected to reach a peak in the near future (if not necessarily then to recede).[1] The effects have centered on China to date, but the epidemic has spread to other centers of production and the duration of its threat to public health and of the governmental and social measures taken to address its spread remains unknown...

Practical Tips to Minimize Labor & Employment Risks Arising From Coronavirus Concerns in the Workplace and Workforce [Part II]
Dykema, March 2020

This second alert of a multipart series provides practical tips to minimize legal risk arising from the following legal perils that await any unprepared or ill-informed employer. As the world’s information about the Coronavirus (“COVID-19”) continues to quickly update, employers must remain aware of the many potential legal risks that can rapidly arise when grappling with COVID-19 in U.S.-based workplaces and workforces...

Practical Tips to Minimize Labor and Employment Risks Arising From the Coronavirus in the Workplace and Workforce
Dykema, March 2020

This first alert of a multipart series provides practical tips to minimize legal risk arising from the following legal perils that await any unprepared or ill-informed employer. As the world’s information about the Coronavirus (“COVID-19”) continues to quickly update, employers must remain aware of the many potential legal risks that can rapidly arise when grappling with COVID-19 in U.S.-based workplaces and workforces...

The National Nursing Home Initiative: New DOJ Taskforce Bolsters Nursing Home Enforcement
Dykema, March 2020

On March 3, 2020, Attorney General William Barr announced the National Nursing Home Initiative—a new U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) taskforce organized to push criminal and civil enforcement action against nursing homes across the country. The initiative will help coordinate DOJ enforcement actions against nursing homes that provide “grossly substandard care...

How Customers in the Automotive Supply Chain Can Prepare for Distressed Suppliers Resulting From COVID-19
Dykema, March 2020

The extent of disruption caused by COVID-19 is unknowable at this time. However, it is likely that there will be suppliers unable to economically weather the storm. Having represented manufacturing customers and suppliers for decades, one thing is certain: even the most sophisticated entities make costly mistakes in addressing distressed suppliers without realizing they paid more as a customer than was necessary...

COVID-19 and Your Insurance Coverage
Dykema, March 2020

Gilda Radner’s character Rosanne Rosannadanna always ended her routines on Saturday Night live by saying, “It’s always something.” She might well have been talking about COVID-19, the effects of which are just beginning to be felt throughout the world. Schools are closed, supply chains may be cracked, travel is slowing and events are being postponed or canceled outright, with more impacts probably to come...

Is Your Contract Virus-Proof?
Dykema, March 2020

Dykema is closely monitoring the potential threat of legal fallouts in the wake of supply chain disruption caused by the novel Coronavirus (also known as COVID-19). In the last month, companies reliant on the global supply chain have been faced with part shortages and overall supply chain disruption. Production facility shutdowns as well as halted transportation, primarily in China, are the main causes of these issues...

 

 

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