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The Legal Brief

Kanawha Judge Issues Order for Ankle Monitors for Violators of COVID-19 Quarantine

On the heels of the declaration of a judicial emergency, a Kanawha County judge entered an order granting authority to the Kanawha County Sheriff and the  Kanawha County Health Department “authority to, upon both parties agreement and when it is has become necessary to quarantine or isolate and restrict public movement of an individual who is infected or likely infected with COVID19, place a…

Reliable Utility Service is Critical to COVID-19 Response

The ongoing pandemic is highlighting just how important reliable utility service is to public health and the functioning of society, especially in times of crisis. Potable water distribution, for example, has drastically reduced the incidence of disease throughout history and is continuing in that role today as people frequently wash their hands and sanitize surfaces to reduce the spread of…

West Virginia Insurance Commissioner Issues Orders and Bulletins related to COVID-19 Crisis 

West Virginia Insurance Commissioner Issues Orders and Bulletins related to COVID-19 Crisis 
West Virginia Insurance Commissioner Jim Dodrill has been active in dealing with the COVID-19 crisis, issuing six Emergency Orders and a series of Insurance Bulletins. The Commissioner started issuing Bulletins on March 9, 2020. On March 13, 2020, the Commissioner declared an “insurance emergency”…

WV Governor Issues Additional Orders for Specific Counties

This weekend, Governor Justice of West Virginia issued two Executive Orders directing additional measures to protect the health and safety of citizens in several counties considered “hot spots” for COVID-19 virus spread. On Friday, April 3, 2020, he issued an order affecting Berkeley, Jefferson, and Morgan counties, announcing that 38% of the COVID-19 positive cases are in the three counties. On…

Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia Extends Judicial Emergency Order to May 1, 2020

On April 3, 2020, the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia entered an amended order which extends the declaration of judicial emergency to May 1, 2020.  

This amended order makes it clear that there are to be no hearings or “in person contact” in the court system in civil cases. It provides protection to litigants by automatically canceling all hearings and deadlines that fall between March…

CARES Act Provisions Benefiting Higher Education

Among the many sectors that are provided relief under the CARES Act, higher education institutions are set to receive both appropriations and regulatory flexibility. The following discusses many of those provisions.

Of the roughly $2 trillion emergency funding provided under the CARES Act, $30.75 billion is included for an Education Stabilization Fund to provide assistance and relief to the…

NCAA Eligibility Over COVID-19

For sports fans, one impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is the loss of the college basketball national tournament, aka “March Madness.” The university shut-downs across the country have resulted in all spring-sports athletes losing their season. Generally, a loss of a season would mean the loss of a year of eligibility to compete, but the National Collegiate Athletic Association (“NCAA”) recently…

Update from Government Relations Team

During a 2020 legislative session marked by discussions of improvements to West Virginia’s foster care system, new economic development concepts for the State of West Virginia, and the possible creation of an Intermediate Court of Appeals, 2389 bills were introduced, with 356 completing legislative action. Out of the 356 bills which completed the legislative process, Governor Justice vetoed six…

COVID-19: Can I Claim My Business Interruption As A Loss Under My Insurance Policy?

Owners of "non-essential” business enterprises have the stress of social distancing AND the worry of saving the business during the pandemic. A loss of income that is directly related to business closures, a break or delay in the supply chain, and/or the effects of social distancing may already appear in businesses’ financials. Now is the time to be proactive and review policies of insurance to…

A Force Majeure Clause Could Cause NBA Players to go Without Pay During COVID-19 Crisis

The sports world came to a screeching halt amongst COVID-19 concerns and bans on crowds. The National Basketball Association (“NBA”) led this charge when several players tested positive for COVID-19. The pandemic shut down of the NBA has contractual implications for all players. NBA players may also go without pay due to the force majeure clauses in the NBA’s collective bargaining agreement. …

Congress Passes COVID-19 Relief Package - WHAT YOUR BUSINESS NEEDS TO KNOW

After intense negotiations, Congress passed the $2.2 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES”) to provide direct assistance to individuals, businesses, and state and local governments to help them address the coronavirus (“COVID-19”) pandemic. President Trump signed CARES into law.

CARES provides relief to businesses in two ways: (1) business interruption loans through…

FBI Warns to be Aware of COVID-19 Phishing Scams

Scammers and hackers are exploiting the confusion and distress caused by COVID-19 to attack while people are most vulnerable. The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center recently issued a public service announcement warning citizens to be vigilant in reviewing their emails due to email-based fraud, malware, and other schemes that are purposefully utilizing the COVID-19 crisis to lure unsuspecting…

 

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