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Coronavirus Task Force

Overview

Helping you navigate legal and business issues arising out of the COVID-19 virus.

As concerns over the coronavirus escalate and reverberate through the marketplace, Varnum has formed a cross-disciplinary task force to guide clients through the myriad business challenges that the COVID-19 virus has created, including with respect to legal and operational planning involving supply chain, labor and employment, health care, education, immigration, restructuring, litigation, tax and lending and public finance.

Our task force is led by senior members of the firm, all of whom bring substantial experience in dynamic, sensitive and multi-faceted situations similar to the current environment. Providing strategic business and legal advice to  your questions in the ever-changing pandemic is our number one objective. Rest assured that our attorneys are staying abreast of hourly developments and will continue to provide timely guidance as the business environment evolves.

Commercial Litigation

Main Street Lending Program Resources GraphicOur litigation and trial team handles a broad spectrum of commercial disputes and, given the uncertainty that the coronavirus has created, our lawyers are well-suited to advise on a variety of contract matters under the Uniform Commercial Code.

Education

The health and wellbeing of students and staff is always of concern to any educational institution. The coronavirus brings new challenges, presenting a variety of issues such as whether to close a campus or a building; how to react to students, parents or staff who are exhibiting troublesome symptoms; what can and should be done to address exposure concerns relating to spring break travels. Our education team is experienced in advising public and private higher education institutions and K-12 schools on a myriad of issues, including the threat and impact of the coronavirus on the education sector.

Health Care

Return to Work Guidelines GraphicHealth care organizations are on the forefront of the coronavirus outbreak, and our dedicated team is advising on issues ranging from privacy and workplace protections under HIPPA to policies and preparedness plans for public health emergencies, including related federal and state laws regarding patient admissions, waste management and disposal from disinfection, and patient treatment.

Immigration

As global concerns escalate, the effect of coronavirus on immigration is expected to be significant. Our immigration attorneys help clients meet that challenge through consistent review of developments and through our established relationships with government agencies and legislative offices. We support legal and human resources departments with internal management and communication, as well as counsel employers on immigration strategies.

Labor and Employment

Along with workforce health considerations, companies experiencing inventory shortages may be forced to consider temporary layoffs until supply chain levels normalize. We are assisting employers evaluate their obligations and options for relief, as well as developing and implementing strategies that protect the workforce while ensuring continuity of operations.

Lending and Public Finance

In response to the sudden drop in sales stemming from COVID-19, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and certain state economic development agencies, including Michigan's, are offering businesses low interest-rate loans and grants. And with looming federal legislation that seeks to provide further support to negatively-impacted businesses, Varnum's finance attorneys are guiding companies through these programs and other financing options to help them weather the storm.

Restructuring

With COVID-19 creating disruptions to both supply chains and demand for certain goods and services, our restructuring team is well equipped to advise both borrowers and lenders in connection with distressed counterparties, particularly as the virus is expected to increase rates of default and covenant noncompliance. Lenders and other stakeholders should consider the possible impacts of the coronavirus in any financial planning or modeling.

Supply Chain

Should your company find itself in the position where it is difficult to maintain inventory levels or produce parts due to lack of material from a foreign or domestic supplier, our team can help identify protections available to you. Options and legal remedies, such as those under force majeure provisions or the Uniform Commercial Code, can help limit the consequences of supply disruptions.

Tax

During the COVID-19 crisis, both the federal government and a multitude of state and local governments have made wide-ranging changes to tax law, payment, auditing, filing and collection procedures. Varnum's tax team has monitored these changes in real time and is ready to assist you with direct and straight-talk answers that cut through the noise in this quickly-changing environment.

For more information, please contact any member of the coronavirus task force.

News & Publications

News

  • Crain's Detroit Business, June 28, 2020
  • Law360, May 27, 2020
  • What Construction and Real Estate Workers Can Expect as They Head Back to Work
    Fox17, May 7, 2020
  • Returning to Work Amid a Pandemic: Luis Avila Discusses COVID-19 Tests in the Workplace
    Rapid Growth, May 7, 2020
  • Crain's Detroit Business, May 7, 2020
  • COVID Testing at Work With Luis Avila
    West Michigan's Morning News (podcast), April 28, 2020
  • PPP Next Round with Mary Kay Shaver
    West Michigan's Morning News (Podcast), April 27, 2020
  • New Workplace Norms Will Greet Workers as They Get Back on the Job
    Fox17, April 27, 2020
  • Domestic Violence During Violence Coronavirus
    Women¡¯s Lifestyle: Inspired Voices (podcast), April 27, 2020
  • Online Notarization Under Executive Order Likely to Be the New Normal
    MiBiz, April 19, 2020
  • Perks of Federal Loss Carryback May Be Limited in Certain States
    Bloomberg Tax, April 17, 2020
  • With Paycheck Protection Funds Dried Up, Small Business Owners Ponder Next Steps
    Crain's Detroit Business, April 16, 2020
  • Liquor Buy Back for Struggling Businesses
    WZZM 13, April 15, 2020
  • West Michigan Domestic Violence Cases Increase During COVID-19 Outbreak
    Fox17, April 14, 2020
  • Things You Need to Know About the Governor¡¯s Extended Order
    WKZO (Podcast), April 14, 2020
  • What Main Street Lending Programs Mean For Retail
    WWD, April 13, 2020
  • 10 Things You Need to Know About the Stay Home Order
    West Michigan's Morning News (Podcast), April 13, 2020
  • Federal Stimulus Funding Available as Nonprofits Face Unique Business Challenges
    MiBiz, April 12, 2020
  • Crain's Detroit Business, April 5, 2020
  • School Districts Adjust as Whitmer Closes Schools
    Fox17, April 2, 2020
  • How Firms In Michigan Are Handling A Statewide Lockdown
    Law360, March 27, 2020
  • March 25, 2020
  • Legal Advice for Companies, Workers Navigating Stay-At-Home Order
    WOODTV 8, March 24, 2020
  • Stay Home Order and the Law
    West Michigan's Morning News (Podcast), March 24, 2020
  • Is Your Business ¡°Essential¡±?
    WKZO (Podcast), March 24, 2020
  • Michigan Businesses Want to Know 'Am I Essential or Not' in Shutdown
    The Detroit News, March 23, 2020
  • Liquor Stores Are Still Open and Seeing a Spike in Business
    Fox17, March 20, 2020
  • Michigan Schools Face Host of Issues Associated with COVID-19 Shutdown
    Rapid Growth, March 20, 2020
  • Firms Create COVID-19 Task Forces, Resource Centers
    Michigan Lawyers Weekly, March 19, 2020
  • Area Law Firms Take Steps to Deal With Virus
    Detroit Legal News, March 18, 2020
  • March 17, 2020
  • Virus Concerns Drive Additional Due Diligence in M&A Transactions
    MiBiz, March 15, 2020
  • Varnum Starts Coronavirus Task Force to Help Guide Through Marketplace Disruptions
    Grand Rapids Legal News, March 11, 2020
  • March 4, 2020
  • Law360, March 4, 2020
  • Big Firms Pitch Coronavirus Task Forces as Client Impacts Spread
    The American Lawyer, March 4, 2020
  • MiBiz, March 2, 2020

Publications

Resources

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