DEF Institutes Mandatory Work-From-Home Status in Response to COVID-19
"In order to decrease the spread of COVID-19, and in compliance with the CDC's recommendations to implement the use of social distancing strategies, Drew Eckl & Farnham has made the decision to institute a mandatory work-from -home status for all of our offices starting on March 17.
Despite the closing of our physical offices, we will continue providing our clients with exceptional legal services." ... Continue Reading
On August 6, 2020, Associate Judge Kelly A. Higashi of the District of Columbia Circuit rejected efforts by Plaintiffs, owners and operators of prominent restaurants in the D.C. area, to recover business income losses from their insurance carrier Erie Insurance Exchange after the mayor declared a state of emergency and a public health emergency. In various orders, the mayor prohibited table seating at restaurants and bars, then prohibited standing customers at restaurants, bars and ultimately closed all non-essential businesses. Erie denied their claims, prompting Plaintiffs to file a declaratory judgment action requesting the D.C. Court to hold that their losses were covered by the policies issued by Erie. ... Continue Reading
On July 1, 2020, Michigan Circuit Court Judge Joyce Draganchuk issued what it appears to be to be the first U.S. court decision in an insured's first party property lawsuit against an insurance carrier seeking business interruption coverage as a result of a governor's shelter-in-place order. See Gavrilides Management Company v. Michigan Insurance Company. The insurer filed a motion for summary disposition asking the Michigan Court to rule as a matter of law that its policy did not provide coverage for business interruption losses caused by COVID-19 shelter-in-place order. Judge Draganchuk agreed with the insurer. The hearing on the motion is posted on You Tube. ... Continue Reading
In light of the shelter-in-place orders issued by the state, counties and municipalities across the country, a significant number of businesses allowed most of their employees to work remotely. While working remotely has reduced the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace, employees may not be as diligent with cyber security while working from home. As a result, employers should be concerned that the increased remote access by employees may make their network ripe for cyber-attacks. According to a 2018 Security Tracker Study conducted by Shred-it, 86% of C-Suite executives and 60% of small business owners agree that the risk of a data breach is higher when employees work off-site than when they work at the office. In light of these concerns, employers must not only implement an effective remote work from home policy, employers must be aware of the possible cyber insurance issues that might exclude or otherwise limit coverage for a remote cyber breach. ... Continue Reading