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By Joshua Atlas , Gregory M. Boucher , W. Matthew Bryant , James E. Goodrich , Kevin M. Levy , and Donald A. Rea of Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr LLP Published May 28, 2020 Jurisdictions Limiting Construction Work Massachusetts: Construction generally is allowed in Massachusetts for all residential construction and certain “essential” commercial construction, including in the City of Boston, as of May 26, 2020. However, certain cities and towns that have limited construction work, such as Cambridge, Somerville, and Martha’s Vineyard towns of West Tisbury and Chilmark, may start re-opening in phases, starting in late May and June 2020. New ...
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By Alison Moss and Aaron Laing of Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt PC Published May 27, 2020 The shelter-in-place orders during the COVID-19 pandemic have altered the way we work, play, and interact. Retail establishments have been forced to close or dramatically change the way they operate. Many office buildings are sitting idle as staff work from home in a new virtual business environment. The hope is to get back to a semblance of our normal lives once this threat has lessened. However, the pandemic has created financial pressures on many businesses. It has also introduced new ways of working that some employers and employees might not want to shed, ...
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By Aron C. Beezley , Elizabeth M. Boone , Frederic L. Smith Jr. , and Alexander G. Thrasher of Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP Published May 17, 2020 Under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), borrowers can seek loan forgiveness of the full principal amount of loans as early as eight weeks after disbursement of the loan proceeds. On May 22, 2020, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) issued its Interim Final Rule regarding the loan forgiveness application process in advance of anticipated loan forgiveness applications from PPP borrowers. Here are the important takeaways from the rule. Borrowers Must Apply for Loan Forgiveness Excepting ...
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By Jennifer Barna of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. Published May 15, 2020; Original post here . On May 13, 2020, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy issued Executive Order 142 , which allows for the resuming of non-essential construction projects (subject to certain conditions and restrictions), the reopening of retail businesses (curbside pickup only) and permitting public gatherings of more than 10 people so long as attendees stay in closed (or socially distant) vehicles. Some of the provisions of Executive Order 142 take effect immediately, and others at 6:00 a.m. on Monday, May 18, 2020. Non-Essential Construction Previously, Gov. Murphy permitted ...
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By Phillip S. Bixby of Verrill Published May 14, 2020 Many businesses and other borrowers, such as nonprofit organizations, that received Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans are now several weeks into disbursing their PPP loans for payroll, mortgage or lease payments, and utility payments. Businesses submitted applications to obtain their PPP loans in which a representative of the business made a number of certifications, including a certification that the loan was “necessary to support ongoing operations.” At some point in the future, many of these businesses will attempt to have some, or all, of the loans forgiven. Throughout this process, these ...
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By Niel Franzese of Robinson+Cole Published May 13, 2020 Changes are made to scopes of work on construction projects every day. In some cases, the contract party being asked to accept these changes is reluctant to do so, and views the changes to be so substantial as to result in a scope of work radically and materially different than what it originally agreed to perform. Faced with these circumstances, the decision to refuse to perform the extra work and walk away from the project can be a tempting one. The “cardinal change doctrine” is a tool available to address these situations—the doctrine provides that, when changes are made to a contract which are ...
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By Timothy Sullivan of Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP Published May 10, 2020 On May 7, 2020, the IRS issued Notice 2020-32 to provide guidance concerning the deductibility for Federal income tax purposes of otherwise deductible expenses incurred in a taxpayer’s trade or business when the taxpayer receives a PPP loan. Section 1106(b) of the Cares Act states that a recipient of a PPP loan can have the PPP loan indebtedness forgiven in an amount equal to the sum of payments made for the following expenses during the 8-week period beginning on the date the loan proceeds are disbursed: (1) payroll costs; (2) any payment of interest on any mortgage obligation ...
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By Stacy Bercun Bohm , Leslie Miller Tomczak , and Daniel Miktus of Akerman LLP Published May 5, 2020 The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has shut down non-essential construction projects in numerous states, and has severely delayed or otherwise impacted construction in almost every other state. These delays and impacts may deal a fatal blow to some project owners. While lenders are rightfully reluctant to take over a distressed project, they would still be wise to remain prepared in the event they are left with no other choice. Lenders should consider the following tips in order to remain ready to take over a failing project. Monitor the project closely. ...
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By Patrick J. Perrone , Loly Garcia Tor , and Tara L. Pehush of K&L Gates LLP Published May 15, 2020 NEW JERSEY On 13 May 2020 Governor Murphy issued Executive Order No. 142 (E.O. 142) permitting non-essential construction to resume subject to strict social distancing measures. All other businesses must continue to allow their employees to work from home or “telework” as set forth in the 21 March 2020 Statewide “Stay at Home” Order, Executive Order No. 107 (E.O. 107). Construction As of 6:00 a.m. on Monday, 18 May 2020, the physical operations of all non-essential construction projects can resume. On Site Protocols for All Construction ...
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By Patrick J. Greene, Jr. , Nathan A. Cohen , and Curtis W. Martin of Peckar & Abramson P.C. Published May 2020; originally published on pecklaw.com here . Over the next several weeks and months construction projects that had been shuttered will be restarted and new projects will be commenced. This Alert provides a checklist of issues that should be considered before starting or restarting such projects. These issues are drawn from lessons learned on “essential” projects that continued in hard-hit areas, guidance issued by various agencies including OSHA, the CDC, and the Department of Labor, and requirements announced by jurisdictions that are allowing ...
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By John (Jack) M. Robb, III and Kenneth T. Stout of Miles & Stockbridge Published May 7, 2020 Last month, Virginia’s General Assembly enacted a new law that makes contractors on large construction projects liable for unpaid wages owed to their subcontractors’ employees. Senate Bill 838, codified at Virginia Code § 11-4.6 and § 40.1-29 has four major effects: 1It makes the general contractor—and all tiers of subcontractors working on the project—contractually liable to pay their subcontractor’s (at any tier) employees’ wages; It requires that such payments equal or exceed those required by applicable statutes, such as Virginia’s Minimum Wage ...
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By James Taylor and Oliver Watts of FTI Consulting Published April 14, 2020 Following the first reports of acute respiratory syndrome in China at the end of 2019, Chinese authorities have identified a novel coronavirus as the main causative agent. Since then, countries around the world have imposed containment measures and social distancing policies in an attempt to slow the spread of the virus. The outbreak has continued to evolve into a global threat and on 11 March 2020 the World Health Organisation declared COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, a global pandemic. The spread of COVID-19 has become one of the biggest challenges to ...
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By Anna Nagomaia of Wendel Rosen LLP Published May 15, 2020, Original content here On May 13, 2020, the SBA published an update to its Frequently Asked Questions [ FAQ 46 ] regarding how it will review borrowers’ Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loan good faith certifications. The new FAQ states that borrowers that receive PPP loans in the amount of less than $2 million will be deemed to have made the required certification concerning the necessity of the loan request in good faith. The new SBA guidance extends an automatic safe harbor to borrowers receiving  less  than $2 million in PPP funds. Borrowers that received PPP loans for over $2 million will ...
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By Neil T. Smith , Margaret N. Rosenfeld , Christopher L. Nasson , Hayley Trahan-Liptak , and Natasha C. Pereira of K&L Gates LLP Published May 13, 2020 While uncertainty has been the overarching theme of the global COVID-19 pandemic, one thing is beyond doubt: the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act’s distribution of more than $2 trillion in stimulus funds is the precursor to a new wave of government enforcement actions once the dust settles. To avoid being ensnared in an investigation that may make you regret taking the government’s offer, companies should take shelter in lessons learned from the government’s crackdown following ...
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By Michael Licker and Christian Garcia of Foley Hoag LLP Published May 6, 2020 On Tuesday, May 5, the Department of Justice (DOJ) filed charges in the federal District Court of Rhode Island against David A. Staveley and David Butziger for conspiracy to make a false statement and conspiracy to commit bank fraud in connection with loan applications made under the federal government’s Payroll Protection Program (PPP). The Complaint alleges that Staveley of Andover, Massachusetts, and Butziger of Warwick, Rhode Island, misrepresented that they were seeking to use over $500,000 in PPP loans to pay wages to dozens of employees at four different business entities. ...
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Many construction companies regularly promote safety on their worksites. Less attention may be paid to the fact that the average employee at work on a high rise is in more danger from suicide than from accidental workplace death, according to statistics compiled from the U.S. Census and the Centers for Disease Control. In fact, more construction workers die by suicide than by all other workplace-related fatalities added together. The CDC reports the suicide rate for construction workers as 49.4 per 100,000, almost four times the national average and five times all other construction fatalities combined. Education and training are the tools t he Construction ...
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By Cal Beyer Published May 7, 2020. Originally published in Construction Business Owner With the continuing uncertainties caused by the coronavirus pandemic, many employees are experiencing increased stress, anxiety, worries and fears. Many employers are concerned about how to help provide support to their employees. A valuable resource for employers during times of crisis is the employee assistance program (EAP). A high percentage of companies have an existing EAP as a part of their employee benefits program. Now, more than ever, is the time to make full use of this resource partner. A high-quality EAP provides various types of services to help employees ...
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By Susan Gaertner and Amy Erickson of Lathrop GPM Published April 27, 2020 The False Claims Act is the primary tool used by the federal government to combat fraud and recover funds fraudulently obtained through a federal program or grant. As it has in the aftermath of other national crises, the False Claims Act is expected to take on renewed importance in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic as the federal government begins to scrutinize payments that were made to business under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The CARES Act, which made over $2 trillion in relief funds available to individuals and businesses impacted ...
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By Gregory A. Brower and Alissa H. Gardenswartz of Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck Published April 27, 2020 In response to the most significant public health crisis in a generation, the federal government has appropriated billions of dollars in new spending aimed at providing relief to individuals, businesses and governmental entities reeling from economic impact of this pandemic. With additional relief bills expected, the total amount of increased federal spending could ultimately exceed $3 trillion, more than one-half of the federal government’s annual budget. With such a dramatic increase in government spending will come a correspondingly significant ...
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By Brian J. Tiemann , Sarah L. Engle , Andrew C. Liazos , and David Fuller of McDermott Will & Emery Published May 12, 2020 A bill titled Jumpstarting Our Businesses’ Success Credit Act of 2020, which would make significant changes to the employee retention tax credits available under the CARES Act, is currently under consideration in the US House of Representatives. In this article, we outline the proposed changes, which are generally designed to increase the availability, scope and amount of the credits. IN DEPTH The US House of Representatives is currently considering a bill titled Jumpstarting Our Businesses’ Success Credit Act of 2020 (the ...
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