COVID-19 Response

A Message From Our Managing Partner

Developments regarding the Coronavirus continue to evolve rapidly, impacting all of our personal and professional lives. At Gallagher Sharp, our main priorities are to protect the safety and well-being of our attorneys and staff, and to continue to provide our clients with the highest quality legal services. Gallagher Sharp has enabled its attorneys and critical staff to work remotely from home via its secure, encrypted VPN platform. You can rest assured that Gallagher Sharp will remain open and fully operational throughout the Coronavirus crisis without interruption. Our lawyers will continue to represent and protect the interest of our clients in all pending legal matters, and we remain available to assist with all future legal needs. Gallagher Sharp has weathered many difficult moments for over 100 years and now, as ever, we remain committed to serving our clients in these trying times. We are grateful for your continued trust and confidence.

Sincerely,

Timothy T. Brick, Managing Partner


Latest Updates Regarding COVID-19


Business & Employment

Update On The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

by Rema Ina
03/30/2020

As we previously advised, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was recently enacted into law and it provides a new Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”).  Under the PPP, the federal government is providing forgivable loans to small businesses to cover their payroll and operational costs (utilities, rent and mortgage payments) during the Coronavirus crisis. Small businesses may apply for this loan through their regular bank or credit union. The amount of the loan is 2.5 times the company’s average monthly payroll costs. Below are more resources offering guidance on the program.
https://home.treasury.gov/system/files/136/PPP–Fact-Sheet.pdf
https://content.sba.gov/sites/default/files/2020-04/PPP–IFRN%20FINAL.pdf

New Paycheck Protection Program Offers Forgivable Loans To Small Businesses

by Rema Ina
03/30/2020

In an effort to keep businesses afloat and allow employees to continue to receive paychecks, the CARES Act provides a new Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”). This program was enacted to help small businesses maintain payrolls and cover mortgage, rent and utility costs during this emergency. Click here to see the FAQs and more on PPP.


Relief For Ohio Businesses In Face Of Stay-At-Home Order

by Robert Terbrack
03/23/2020

One avenue for relief is the recent availability of The U.S. Small Business Administration (“SBA”) Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program. This program, which existed long before the COVID-19 outbreak, has been made available in some states for businesses impacted by this pandemic. Ohio, fortunately, is one of the states that meet the criteria for the loan. Find out more by clicking here.


What Employers Need to Know about the New Families First Coronavirus Response Act

by Rema Ina
03/20/2020

Under this Act, employees who are sick or quarantined because of COVID-19 are entitled to two weeks of paid leave. Employees who are caring for others or home with their children may also be entitled to two weeks paid leave and paid FMLA leave. Employers will be reimbursed for this paid leave in the form of payroll tax credit equal to 100% of the leave wages.. Read the full article by clicking here.


Employer Concerns When Responding to the Coronavirus

by Rema Ina
​03/11/2020

The spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus around the world is presenting unique situations and unprecedented challenges. The attorneys at Gallagher Sharp LLP want to provide some guidelines for employers to best handle these issues with their employees in the work context. Read the full article by clicking here.

 


General Litigation

Michigan Statute of Limitations Now Tolled Per Executive Order

by Adam Sadowski
​04/23/2020

On the evening of April 22, 2020, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020- 58, which will significantly impact civil litigation in Michigan while the State is under a period of emergency due to COVID-19. Read more about this here.


Ohio Federal Courts Amend General Order Extending the Closure of Federal Courthouses and the Suspension of Jury Trials

by Robert Boroff
​04/22/2020

On April 20, 2020, Judge Patricia A. Gaughan, Chief Judge for the Northern District of Ohio, amended her General Order No. 2020-5-2, which closed all federal courthouses in Cleveland, Akron, Youngstown, and Toledo and suspended all jury trials until at least May 1, 2020. Read more about this update here.


Supreme Court of Ohio Issues Tolling Order in Response to Ohio H.B. 197

by Robert Boroff
​04/01/2020

In follow up to our March 27, 2020 Newsflash concerning the signing into law of Ohio H.B. 197, which set forth the tolling of numerous limitation periods, discovery deadlines, and other statutory deadlines that apply to civil litigation, Supreme Court of Ohio Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor recently issued an Order (found by clicking here) that recognizes what is contained in H.B. 197. Read more here.


New Ohio Law Tolls Statute of Limitations and Other Litigation Deadlines Due to COVID-19

by Robert Boroff
​03/27/2020

On March 27, 2020, Governor Mike DeWine signed into law House Bill 197, which will have sweeping ramifications for civil litigation in Ohio while the State is under a period of emergency due to COVID-19.  The new law provides that any statute of limitation, discovery deadline, service of process deadline, or “any other civil limitation or deadline under the Revised Code” that was set to expire, or that was to come due, between March 9, 2020 and July 30, 2020, shall be tolled (otherwise known as paused or delayed).  Read more here.


Insurance

Is There Coverage For Suits  Based On Transmitting COVID-19?

by Steven Strang
04/15/2020

Has one of your policyholders, or one of their employees, been sued for transmitting COVID- 19? This article briefly looks at coverage for third-party claims. Read more by clicking here.


Ohio Legislature Introduces Bill to Require Insurers to Cover COVID-19 Business Interruption Claims​

by Steven Strang & Steven Keslar
03/27/2020

Recently two Democrats in Ohio’s House of Representatives introduced legislation designed to require insurers with property insurance policies offering business interruption insurance to cover losses attributable to viruses and pandemics.  The legislation was introduced in response to the state of emergency in Ohio declared under Executive Order 2020-01D on March 9, 2020 due to COVID-19. Read more by clicking here.


COVID-19 Coverage Litigation Is Here – What To Expect

by Steven Strang
03/20/2020

As more and more closures are mandated across the nation, the claims will spike. Establishments will be closed for weeks and perhaps months, which mean the $899 billion in projected sales reported by Restaurant.org will certainly take a big hit. Policyholders are going to face an uphill battle for coverage of COVID-19 losses under the typical commercial property policy. Astonishingly, the New Jersey legislature is already discussing a statutory way to shift these losses to the insurance industry. The bill was introduced on March 16, 2020 and still remains subject to revision. If it passes it would certainly be challenged by the insurance industry on constitutional grounds.  Read more by clicking here.


Transportation

UPDATE: FMCSA Extends HOS Emergency Declaration through May 15​, 2020

by Joe Pappalardo
04/09/2020

The extension applies to all 50 states and will remain in effect until May 15, 2020. The initial order was set to expire April 12, 2020, so the new extension is for just over a month. Find out more here.


UPDATE: FMCSA Expands Emergency Declaration​

by Joe Pappalardo
03/19/2020

In our last newsflash sent on March 16, 2020, we mentioned that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) decided to waive certain hours-of-service, parts and accessories and other regulations in response to Covid-19/Coronavirus. We suggested that the Motor Carrier and Driver assure themselves they are in strict compliance with the FMCSA’s definition of emergency relief activities. On March 18, 2020, the FMCSA clarified the categories of direct assistance supporting emergency efforts which qualify for exemption from Parts 390-399. Find out more here.


FMCSA Grants Nationwide Emergency Relief For First Time In History In Response To Coronavirus

by Joe Pappalardo
03/16/2020

Shortly after President Trump declared a national emergency on March 13, 2020, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) decided to waive certain hours-of-service, parts and accessories and other regulations in response to Covid-19/Coronavirus. Read more here.