LAWGRAM VOLUME 20, NO. 1

Access to the Courts in the New Normal

By: Howard L. Teplinsky

In March 2020, as Governor Pritzker’s shelter-in-place order took hold, Illinois state and federal courts were also implementing their own administrative orders. For all practical purposes, access to the courthouse – both state and federal courts – was limited to criminal and emergency matters only, with most civil disputes taking a back seat. Status hearings and trial dates were continued. Completion of written discovery and depositions were also delayed. As one can imagine, the unprecedented delay in proceeding with normal litigation activities has created an enormous backlog of cases.

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Businesses Cannot Count on Business Interruption Coverage to Combat Covid-19

By: Roenan Patt

On May 27, 2020, Levin Ginsburg published a blog post (https://lgattorneys.com/can-businesses-count-on-business-interruption-coverage-to-combat-covid-19-losses/) on a fast-developing legal situation in the business and insurance coverage community due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, as businesses were required to comply with states’ closure orders and social distancing guidelines, many submitted claims to their insurers under their policies’ business interruption coverage. Since that time, there have been significant developments regarding these business interruption claims.

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Wave of COVID-19 Employment Litigation on the Horizon

By: Walker R. Lawrence

As employers continue to confront the unique challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, the first wave of COVID-19 related lawsuits have been filed against employers. This is likely just the beginning. These lawsuits range from safety violations, to wage and hour claims, to leave law violations, and everything in between. It is important that employers take proactive measures now to mitigate their future litigation risk. However, because many of these fact patterns and laws are new (and ever-changing), there’s little guidance and case law to rely on as businesses make these critical decisions. Ultimately, it is important to rely on tried-and-true best practices implemented prior to COVID-19 and to work closely with your employment attorney to put the company in the best defensive posture before making any significant employment decisions.

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Commercial Leases in the COVID-19 Era

By: Jeffrey M. Galkin

2020 is and will continue to be a particularly difficult year for commercial tenants and their landlords. The sudden economic downturn resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic has radically changed the nature of businesses and the ownership and operation commercial properties. These unforeseen circumstances are requiring tenants, landlords and their professional advisors to address not only the short-term economic ramifications of the pandemic, but also the long-term impact on the manner in which commercial real estate is owned and operated.

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