Get the information you need to help navigate the legal and business challenges brought on by COVID-19.
Ireland Stapleton’s attorneys are closely monitoring the business implications caused by the Coronavirus and are working to provide you with information to help you protect yourself, your employees, and your business in a rapidly evolving situation. To help our clients navigate this situation, we are centralizing all our COVID-19 materials here, and we will continue to update this resource page for you.
UPDATE: New Requirements for Evictions for all Commercial and Residential Tenants in Colorado
On September 8, 2020, and again on September 22, 2020, Governor Jared Polis issued two new Executive Orders to once again modify the requirements that landlords must satisfy in order to evict any tenant in Colorado, whether commercial or residential. The first, Executive Order D 2020 185 (“Order 185”), replaces the ordinary notice and cure periods for nonpayment of rent (typically ten (10) days for residential tenants, and three (3) days for commercial tenants) with a full thirty (30) day notice and cure period. Previously, Governor Polis only required such a lengthy notice and cure period for residential tenants, but not commercial tenants. However, this requirement does not appear to apply to defaults for reasons other than nonpayment of rent. Read more.
How COVID-19 Affects the Rights of Those Living in Senior and Residential Living Facilities
August 25, 2020 — Residents and operators of nursing, senior, and other residential living facilities find themselves making difficult choices as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Operators of any residential facility walk a fine line in balancing residents’ desires and rights for freedom of movement, taking measures to keep residents and staff safe, complying with state and local regulations, and managing liability risks. Read more.
Worker Protections Under Colorado’s New Public Health Emergency Whistleblower Law
August 4, 2020 — Effective July 11, 2020, the Public Health Emergency Whistleblower (“PHEW”) law provides workers with protections from discrimination or retaliation for raising safety or health concerns related to a public health emergency. PHEW also protects workers who choose to wear their own personal protective equipment. Read more.
Restaurant Takeout and Delivery of Alcohol Extended into 2021
July 20, 2020 — In late March, Governor Jared Polis, acting under emergency powers, issued an executive order that temporarily suspends certain alcohol beverage statutes, allowing on-premises restaurants, bars, and breweries and others to sell, deliver, and provide alcohol for takeout to customers who are over the age of 21 and who also purchase food. In July, the Governor’s signed Senate Bill 20-213 passed by the Colorado General Assembly, which extends alcohol takeout to the end of June 2021. Read more.
Eviction Law in Colorado Changes Yet Again
June 25, 2020 — On June 13, 2020, Governor Polis issued yet another executive order to modify the substance of Colorado’s eviction laws and the availability and enforcement of evictions in Colorado using his authority under Colorado’s Disaster Emergency Act. The ne w Order 2020-101 (“Order 101”) – now the Governor’s fifth order to implement new rules, restrictions, and prohibitions for landlords over a breakneck period of less than three months – is notably different from his previous eviction orders in a number of ways. Read more.
New FAQs on the Paycheck Protection Program
May 13, 2020 — The Small Business Administration issued a new FAQ regarding the Paycheck Protection Program this morning that eases borrower concerns about the certification of need issue. Read more.
Preventing Liability After COVID-19
May 1, 2020 — Businesses will gradually reopen in the coming weeks if COVID-19 infections continue to decline, but they should not regard it as a signal to return to normal. We will see the COVID-19 crisis spawn a wave of lawsuits in the months ahead as struggling businesses and laid-off employees fail to meet their financial obligations. Foreclosures will escalate, there will be defaults on leases and loans, boards will be sued when the value of securities plunge, and the inability to meet the obligations of contracts will produce a raft of litigation. Some of this litigation is inevitable – and already starting to bubble up – but businesses may still be able to limit exposure to lawsuits if they take a cautious approach in the weeks ahead. Read more.
UPDATE: The Paycheck Protection Program
April 24, 2020 — President Trump signed off on an additional $320 billion in coronavirus relief for small businesses seeking relief through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). This additional cash infusion adds to the earlier $349 billion of PPP funding that ran out as of April 16, 2020. The information below generally describes the application procedure for applying for relief through an SBA-approved lender. Read more.
IRS Extends Time Sensitive Deadlines, Including for 1031 Exchanges
April 13, 2020 — On April 9, 2020, the IRS released Notice 2020-23 extending important tax deadlines for individuals and businesses. The Notice applies to all “Specified Time Sensitive Actions” which are due to be performed on or after April 1, 2020, and before July 15, 2020. Deadlines falling within that time frame are now extended to July 15, 2020. Read more.
EPA’s COVID-19 Enforcement Policy ‘Not a License to Pollute’
April 7, 2020 — The Environmental Protection Agency relaxed the enforcement of some environmental obligations due to COVID-19. This policy of relaxed enforcement went into effect on March 26 but applies retroactively from March 13. Speaking with Law Week Colorado, Ireland Stapleton environmental attorney Rebecca L. Almon advises that despite the relaxed enforcement, the number one goal is to comply if possible. Read more.
Beware of the Scams
April 1, 2020 — Please be aware that scams already are underway to defraud individuals slated to receive payments resulting from the passage of the CARES Act, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. Read more.
The FFCRA Small Business Exemption
March 31, 2020 — According to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”), starting April 1, 2020, certain employers must provide employees with emergency paid sick leave and emergency family and medical leave (“paid emergency leave benefits”). However, the FFCRA provides an exemption for small businesses when providing paid emergency leave benefits “would jeopardize the viability of the business as a going concern.” This weekend, the U.S. Department of Labor shed light on the small business exemption. This article summarizes the small business exemption and provides guidance on its application. Read more.
Understanding Business Interruption Insurance
March 28, 2020 — Many businesses carry insurance policies to mitigate financial losses in the event of business stoppages or slowdowns. Several types of policies may cover lost profits and costs when a business cannot continue normal operations. Whether business interruption insurance covers stoppages or slowdowns caused by COVID-19 will depend on the specific language of each policy and the unique facts of each claim. Read more.
$2 Trillion Cares Act Passed into Law — What Does it Mean for You and Your Business
March 27, 2020 — The “Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act” (the “CARES Act”) was signed into law on March 27, 2020. The 880-page CARES Act provides more than $2 trillion in federal aid to support business continuity for small businesses, increase unemployment benefits, provide immediate cash payments to individuals, boost public health spending, and provide federal stimulus to stabilize specific industries. Read more.
Families First Act — Posting Notice
March 27, 2020 — As you know from our prior alerts, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“Families First Act”), which provides Emergency Paid Sick Leave and Emergency Family Medical Leave for employees impacted by COVID-19, will go into effect on April 2, 2020. The Families First Act requires employers to post a notice of the two new emergency leave benefits in conspicuous places on the employer’s premises where such notices are customarily posted. Read more.
Families First Coronavirus Response Act for Colorado Special Districts
March 25, 2020 — In a rare bipartisan effort to provide relief to Americans, Congress passed, and President Trump signed into law the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“Act”) on March 18, 2020. The Act addresses many important issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Important to employers, the Act creates two new emergency leave benefits for families impacted by COVID-19. Michelle B. Ferguson and Josephine B. Reid breakdown this Act for Colorado Special Districts. Read more.
Families First Coronavirus Response Act
March 20, 2020 — In a rare bipartisan effort to provide relief to Americans, Congress passed, and President Trump signed into law the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“Act”) on March 18, 2020. The Act addresses many important issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Important to employers, the Act creates two new emergency leave benefits for families impacted by COVID-19. Read more.
Helping Prevent the Spread of COVID-19
March 15, 2020 — Like you, we here at Ireland Stapleton are closely monitoring the rapidly developing situation with COVID-19. It goes without saying that our priority during this uncharted time is the health, safety, and well-being of our team and their families, our clients, our colleagues, and our communities. Read more.