During these challenging times, Severson & Werson remains open and in full operation, consistent with the firm’s previously established contingency planning. While many of our attorneys and staff will be working remotely, as a firm, we continue in full operation. We are here to help, as always.

COVID-19

The ongoing public health emergency created by COVID-19 is having a significant impact on our clients and their customers.  The challenges created by the pandemic are growing in number and evolving day by day.  Severson & Werson is helping clients identify, understand, and manage COVID-19-related legal risks and trends.  Across different practice areas – banking, business litigation, construction, creditor’s rights and bankruptcy, labor and employment, financial services, insurance, professional liability defense, and real estate – the Firm’s attorneys rely on their deep knowledge of clients’ businesses and industries to help track and make sense of the significant and often urgent legal issues that arise from this crisis.  Severson & Werson is here to help.  Please check back frequently as we update this page with new articles, bulletins, and other resources and content.

CARES Act E-Alerts

Severson & Werson has prepared the following bulletins and summaries to assist clients in responding to various legal issues arising from the pandemic:

Labor & Employment Once you’re ready to bring back employees to the office, how will you decide who to bring back and when? Generally, the return of the workforce will likely occur in a phased approach. As a business, it is imperative that you consider the following issues to develop a thoughtful and impartial approach to regaining your workforce: Will… Read More

Labor & Employment The COVID-19 pandemic forced countless businesses into a near daily cycle of adjustments and adaptations, all with the overarching goal of protecting their employees while enduring the emergency measures taken to contain the virus. Now, states and local governments have begun to ease their blanket shelter in place restrictions. Is there anything businesses should do now while… Read More

Labor & Employment What are the implications around screening and testing in the workplace that employers must be cognizant of as they strive to comply with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)? Although pandemic preparedness in the workplace and its intersection with the ADA is not necessarily a novel concept (in fact, the EEOC recently updated existing guidance on… Read More

Financial Services Law On March 27, 2020 the President signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). The statute is the largest economic stimulus in the nation’s history—totaling more than $2 trillion—and was designed to provide significant financial and regulatory relief in response to the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis. Like many of the other sweeping… Read More

Construction Law As we experience and emerge from “the great shutdown” of 2020, things have and will change in all aspects of life – including the design and construction process. Nowhere in the design and construction interface and transformation has the impact been greater than with respect to on-site design engagement during construction. Designers, contractors, and owners have all had… Read More

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Government Guidance

In addition to the case summaries identified below, multiple government agencies are continuing to release new information and guidance about the CARES Act which may be particularly helpful to those working in the financial services industry.  The latest information regarding the CARES Act can be found directly from the following government agencies.

  1. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Coronavirus Webpage for Bankers and Consumers: https://www.fdic.gov/coronavirus/
  2. Treasury Department Guidance Regarding the CARES Act: https://home.treasury.gov/policy-issues/cares/assistance-for-small-businesses
  3. Small Business Association Coronavirus Guidance and Resources: https://www.sba.gov/page/coronavirus-covid-19-small-business-guidance-loan-resources
  4. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Unified Coronavirus Housing Webpage: https://www.consumerfinance.gov/coronavirus/mortgage-and-housing-assistance/
  5. White House, Centers for Disease Control, and Federal Emergency Management Agency Coronavirus Webpage: https://www.coronavirus.gov/

CARES Act Litigation Tracker

On May 1, 2020, plaintiff Hyde-Edwards Salon & Spa moved to create a multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of California combining almost a dozen class actions over defendant JP Morgan Chase Bank N.A.'s handling of loans available through the federal Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) under the CARES Act. Another motion by plaintiff Cyber Defense Group seeks to transfer the cases… Read More

On May 8, 2020, Seto Marselian, d/b/a Bistro Pazzo filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S District Court for the Northern District of California against its lender. (case number 3:20-cv-03166.) Plaintiff is represented by Bottini & Bottini, Inc. Plaintiff is a restaurant owner who submitted a PPP loan application to its lender, and alleges that the lender wrongful denied… Read More

On April 3, 2020 Profiles, Inc. and other small businesses filed a putative class action against their lender for alleged discrimination arising from the denial of loans under the Paycheck Protection Program (case no. 20-00894.) Plaintiffs are represented by Rifkin Weiner Livingston Levitan and Silver LLC. Specifically, plaintiffs allege that their lender wrongly prioritized the applications of its existing customers… Read More

On March 16, 2020, plaintiffs James and Lisa Shuff sued their lender in the Southern District of West Virginia (case no. 20-cv-00184.) Plaintiffs are represented by Mountain State Justice, Inc. The complaint is a purported class action which seeks “to temporarily stop foreclosures in West Virginia during the national emergency caused by the spread of the COVID-19 virus.” Plaintiffs allege… Read More

On April 20, 2020, Legendary Transport, LLC brought a class action against several national lenders.  The complaint was filed in the United States District Court Central District of California (case number 2:20-cv-03636-ODW-JC). Plaintiff is a small business that applied for a PPP loan with one of the Defendant-lenders.  Plaintiff claims that all of the Defendants prioritized loan applications of “favored… Read More

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