Thank you for visiting our COVID-19 information page. We will be updating this page regularly during the COVID-19 crisis with articles and helpful links to information. Please note that things are progressing quickly during this time, and the information on this site is for informational purposes and is not legal advice nor does it create an attorney client relationship with our firm.
New York State Resources and Information
New York Sample Business Reopening Plan and Checklist: Steps for reopening that implicate both public health and employment issues.
Update: Guidance on Essential Services as of March 27, 2020NYS Department of Labor Complaint Form re Violations of COVID-19 Regulations: The NYS DOL has created a complaint form to report violations of the new COVID-19 regulations for employers including failing to pay sick/PFL benefits as well as for nonessential business continuing to operate or forcing employees to come in to work, among other things.
NYS Expanded Unemployment Insurance under the federal CARES Act: The federal stimulus bill expanded unemployment and it is possible that individuals who would not traditionally be eligible but are out of work because of COVID-19 (not necessarily sick but "affected") can receive unemployment benefits. CARES Act aid will expire if there is not a new stimulus bill. This article explains.
NYS Homes and Community Renewal Info and FAQs: As of March 31, 2020 there is no moratorium on rent payments (residential and commercial), however there is a stop to all evictions and foreclosures. Moratorium on residential evictions due to COVID-19 financial hardship was extended through January 1, 2021.
Note: The paid sick and expanded FMLA leave provisions of the FFCRA expired on December 31, 2020. It is still possible that employees would have recourse for retaliation occurring after this date based upon leave that was taken during the effective period.
Department of Labor: COVID-19 in the Workplace: This page has links to federal guidance on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). The FFCRA is the new federal law providing emergency paid sick leave and expanded Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA) coverage relating to COVID-19.
FMLA and COVID-19: Department of Labor FAQs: See FFCRA FAQs for expanded FMLA under the FFCRA as opposed to "ordinary" FMLA leave when someone is actually sick or caring for a sick close family member.
Department of Labor Rule FFCRA (29 CFR 826): This is the regulation that lays out the details Act. It is not in layman's terms. Refer to fact sheets for general overview.
EEOC ADA and Rehabilitation Act Guidelines re COVID-19: The EEOC discusses the anti-discrimination laws, the Americans with Disabilities Act (private and municipal employees) and the Rehabilitation Act (federal employees). Includes information about vaccines. Updated December 2020.
OSHA Guidance on Preparing the Workplace for COVID-19 (Updated January 2021 Pursuant to President Biden's Executive Order)
Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and COVID-19 FAQs: The FLSA is the federal wage and hour law, governing issues like overtime pay.
Information on the Courts and for the Legal Profession
Executive Order re Notarial Acts: Did you know Scott and Giovanna are both notaries? We can now perform this function via videoconferencing or FaceTime. Feel free to reach out if you need assistance.
Executive Order re Qualified Immunity for Medical Providers Treating COVID-19: This means that "physicians, physician assistants, specialist assistants, nurse practitioners, licensed registered professional nurses and licensed practical nurses" are immune from liability for negligence/malpractice in the course of treating COVID-19, unless the injury or death was caused by gross negligence. This immunity was later rolled back for non-COVID treatment.
Articles of Interest:
COVID-19 and Nursing Homes: Discussing recent NY AG report on unreported nursing home COVID-19 deaths, and civil liability for nursing home negligence and medical malpractice during the pandemic.
Know Your Employment Rights: Vaccines: We talk about whether your employer can require you to get the COVID-19 vaccine. (Likely, yes).
Consequences of Questionable Social Media Use During the COVID Crisis : Pent up frustrations during this crisis can result in inappropriate, offensive and even threatening social media posts. In this article, we talk about when those posts - and other out of work conduct - can result in termination, and when they might be protected from retaliation.
D'Orazio Peterson's Working with your Spouse Survival Guide: Find yourself working in close quarters with your spouse or partner for the first time? We know a little something about that.
FMLA, Disability and Discrimination Laws Implicated by Coronavirus: This article was published prior to the enactment of the Families First Coronavirus Protection Act which expanded the FMLA and the expansion of Paid Family Leave in NY to cover coronavirus quarantine. While various legal issues in this article remain relevant, more recent articles on FMLA and PFL appear above.
Dog Adoptions Have Increased Due to Coronavirus Pandemic: What Dog Owners Need to Know : It's great news in the midst of so much bad that shelters have adopted out all of their dogs. But there is responsibility and liability that comes with dog ownership, that homeowners and renters need to be aware of.
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act ("FFCRA") - What Is It, and Why Is It Important?: The FFCRA became effective on April 1, 2020. In this article, we discuss the new law, and the crucial protections that it provides to employees during this unprecedented time.