COVID-19: Client Resource Portal

Phelps remains prepared and committed to the continued satisfaction of our clients’ needs, while also playing a supportive role in minimizing the spread of COVID-19. This page will provide unique content produced by Phelps lawyers as well as helpful government or agency resources.

“Though what the coming weeks will bring is unknowable, a measure of our excellence will be shown in how we adapt to these complex and changing circumstances, for our families, our communities and our clients. We will drive through these difficulties, together.”

Marshall Redmon, Firm Managing Partner

Read the full message from our Firm Managing Partner here.

Insights and Resources

Breaking Down the Record $2.2 Trillion Coronavirus Relief Act – Phelps attorneys recap sections of the CARES act that may affect your business.

Business

Pandemic Highlights the Importance of Formal Estate and Medical Planning – (April 7, 2020) Tampa Counsel Derek Larsen-Chaney explains why, in these uncertain times with COVID-19, now is the best time to start thinking about formal estate and medical planning.

Breaking Down the Tax Provisions in the CARES Act – (April 3, 2020) Mobile Partner Todd Denison and Mobile Associate Luke Nixon examine the tax incentives in the recently passed Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

What Small Businesses Need to Know to Get (Potentially Forgivable) Loans from the COVID-19 Stimulus Bill – (April 2, 2020) Baton Rouge Partner Ryan Moon, Tampa Partner Josh Podolsky and New Orleans Partner Bart Bacigalupi break down the Paycheck Protection Program and how it can help small businesses and their employees through this period of uncertainty due to the economic effects of COVID-19.

Breaking Down the 2019 Small Business Reorganization Act – (April 2, 2020) New Orleans Counsel Rick Shelby and Mobile Associate Danielle Mashburn-Myrick discuss the Small Business Reorganization Act of 2019 and why Chapter 11 bankruptcy is no longer just for the big guys.

Can't Wait For A Stimulus Check? Federal Student Loan Borrowers Have Another Option For Quick Cash Flow Help – (March 29, 2020) Tampa Counsel Derek Larsen-Chaney describes how CARES student debt relief can provide immediate avenues for relief to businesses struggling during COVID-19 pandemic.

What Businesses Need to Do Now to Cope With the COVID-19 Downturn – (March 23, 2020) New Orleans Partner Bart Bacigalupi and New Orleans Counsel Rick Shelby point out that early financial planning is critical to dealing with economic downturn and discuss factors to consider and why bankruptcy may be a solution for some.

How Force Majeure Can Help Businesses Cope with the Effects of Coronavirus – (March 19, 2020) Baton Rouge Partner Jon Benda and Baton Rouge Associate Madison DeWitt explain force majeure and how it may affect businesses as the nation deals with COVID-19.

Businesses Should Take These Steps to Navigate Uncertainties During the COVID-19 Pandemic – (March 18, 2020) New Orleans Partners Bart Bacigalupi and Phil Claverie, Jr. outline steps and precautionary measures that businesses should take during these uncertain times.

Is Bankruptcy a Cure for the Coronavirus Economic Fallout? – (March 18, 2020) New Orleans Counsel Rick Shelby and Mobile Associate Danielle Mashburn-Myrick discuss how businesses struggling to survive during this economic crisis can use bankruptcy to save their future.

Cyber

What to Look for as COVID-19 Fraud Cases Rise – (March 25, 2020) Baton Rouge Partner Walt Green, Tampa Partner Jason Pill and Baton Rouge Associate Gregory Reda explain how businesses can report COVID-19 related fraud cases.

Lawmakers Seek a National Standard on Consumer Data With New Bill – (March 24, 2020) Baton Rouge Partner Walt Green, Tampa Partner Jason Pill and Baton Rouge Associate Gregory Reda outline the latest Consumer Data Privacy & Security Act Congress just introduced and clarify what standards businesses should follow regarding consumers’ data.

Take These Steps to Minimize the Cyber Risk That Comes With Coronavirus Work Policies – (March 12, 2020) Baton Rouge Partner Walt Green and Baton Rouge Associate Gregory Reda discuss precautionary measures businesses should take to reduce cyber risks when employees are working remotely.

Environmental

Update on State Environmental Guidance for Regulated Entities in La., Texas, Miss. and N.C. – (April 7, 2020) Baton Rouge Associate Gregory Reda and New Orleans Associate David Topping break down the updates to state regulatory guidance in Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi and North Carolina.

EPA Offers Formal Compliance Guidance for Regulated Entities – (March 27, 2020) Baton Rouge Associate Gregory Reda provides an update on the EPA’s eased compliance restrictions on facilities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

EPA, States Provide Direction on Dealing with Agency Submittals during COVID-19 Pandemic – (March 25, 2020) New Orleans Associate David Topping and Baton Rouge Associate Gregory Reda summarize the EPA’s informal guidance on how Louisiana and Texas businesses should submit information and meet deadlines during this time of remote work.

Health Care

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Partner Toolkit - The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has an online toolkit available that address a variety of health care legal issues associated with COVID-19.

Louisiana Department of Insurance Addresses Telemedicine Coverage Amid Escalating Coronavirus Outbreak – (March 24, 2020) Baton Rouge Partner Errol King and Baton Rouge Associate Katie Cicardo Mannino explain Emergency Rule 37 issued by the Louisiana Department of Insurance and explain what it requires of all health insurance issuers in Louisiana.

Louisiana Department of Insurance Issues Emergency Rule Amid Coronavirus Outbreak- (March 20, 2020) Baton Rouge Partner Errol King and Baton Rouge Associate Katie Cicardo Mannino explain Emergency Rule 36 issues by the Louisiana Department of Insurance.

Immigration

Frequently Asked Questions on COVID-19 and the H-2A Program – (April 1, 2020) New Orleans Partner Brandon Davis, Raleigh Partner Nathan Huff and New Orleans Associate Stephanie Poucher answer some common questions on the H2-A Program during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Government Relaxes In-Person Work Eligibility Verification Rules for Now – (March 27, 2020) New Orleans Partner Brandon Davis and Baton Rouge Associate Molly McDiarmid discuss new guidance released March 20 regarding the physical presence requirements associated with completing Form I-9.

What to Know as Coronavirus Puts Halt on Immigration Courts and Services – (March 18, 2020) New Orleans Partner Brandon Davis and New Orleans Associate Laura Buck share updates concerning immigration courts and services.

What the European Travel Ban Means for U.S. Citizens, Foreign Nationals – (March 12, 2020) New Orleans Partner Brandon Davis and New Orleans Associate Laura Buck explain the travel ban to the United States and who is not affected by the restrictions.

Labor and Employment

Louisiana Eases Requirements for Unemployment Insurance in Emergency Proclamation – (April 8, 2020) New Orleans Counsel Mark Fijman examines Louisiana’s emergency proclamation and how it loosens the eligibility requirements for people seeking unemployment insurance.

DOL Posts Temporary Rule Issuing Regulations Under the Coronavirus Response Act – (April 2, 2020) Tampa Partner Jason Pill and Associate Austin Laurienzo examine the Department of Labor’s temporary rule that provides clarification for employers and workers on the recent paid sick leave expansion under the FFCRA.

Federal Judge Blocks Enforcement of Dallas's Paid Sick Leave Ordinance, but Eligible Employees May Still Seek Leave under FFCRA – (March 31, 2020) Dallas/Fort Worth Partner Claudine Jackson and Dallas/Fort Worth Associate Andrea Paris discuss the state of Dallas’ Paid Sick Time Ordinance and what employers need to know.

A Snapshot of Employee Benefits Under the CARES Act - (March 30, 2020) Baton Rouge Partner Karleen Green, New Orleans Partner Michael Williams and New Orleans Counsel Seale Pylate break down the CARES Act's key provisions to employee benefits and executive pay.

Families First Coronavirus Response Act Notice – Frequently Asked Questions FFCRA poster questions

Dallas to Enforce its Paid Sick Leave Ordinance Beginning on April 1 – (March 26, 2020) Dallas/ Fort Worth Partner Claudine Jackson and Dallas/ Fort Worth Associate Andrea Paris discuss what businesses should consider to comply with both the Dallas Paid Sick Leave Order and the Stay Home Stay Safe Order.

DOL Issues Initial Guidance on New Paid Leave Requirements – (March 26, 2020) New Orleans Counsel Seale Pylate summarizes the Department of Labor’s guidance on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which provides for paid leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) for COVID-19 related child care issues and for emergency paid sick leave for other COVID-19 events.

Alabama and Louisiana Revise Unemployment Compensation Rules in Response to COVID-19 Crisis – (March 25, 2020) Mobile Partner Day Peake and Baton Rouge Associates Molly McDiarmid and Michael Victorian provide updates to Alabama and Louisiana unemployment rules and how it will affect businesses forced to close or lay off employees due to lost revenue.

EEOC and CDC Give Clearer Answers on How Employers Can Manage the COVID-19 Pandemic – (March 24, 2020) Tampa Associate Raquel Ramirez Jefferson outlines EEOC guidance on how employers can follow advice from CDC while staying compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, EEOC guidance on hiring during COVID-19 as well as CDC’s updates to its Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019.

COVID-19 Pandemic Causes NLRB to Suspend All Representation Elections – (March 20, 2020) Jackson Counsel Nick Morisani informs clients that the National Labor Relations Board announces suspension of all representation elections effective March 19.

Staying Compliant With Employment Eligibility Verification in the Age of Social Distancing – (March 19, 2020) New Orleans Partner Brandon Davis and New Orleans Associate Laura Buck provide practical I-9/Employment Eligibility Verification compliance considerations for businesses that hire during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Families First Coronavirus Response Act: What Employers Need to Know – (March 19, 2020) Jackson Partner LaToya Merritt, Jackson Associate Trey Clark and New Orleans Counsel Seale Pylate explain what employers need to know about the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

A Q&A on Labor and Employment During the Time of Coronavirus – (March 19, 2020) Dallas/Ft. Worth Partner Claudine Jackson and Dallas/Ft. Worth Associates Andrea Paris and Laura Williams discuss frequently asked questions related to employee leave and time off from work.

Department of Labor Issues Guidance on Navigating Tricky Workplace Issues Involving Coronavirus – (March 13, 2020) Tampa Associate Matthew Perez discusses recent DOL guidance regarding staffing decisions facing employers during this pandemic.

Litigation

Fifth Circuit Gives Defendants Powerful New Tool With Approval of "Snap Removal" – (April 8, 2020) New Orleans Partner Jeremy Grabill discusses the Fifth Circuit's approval of "snap removal", and how this decision gives defendants a powerful tool to move cases from state to federal courts.

How Texans Can Find Possible Relief for Non-Performance Caused by COVID-19 – (April 3, 2020) Houston Partner Marcus Tucker and Houston Associate Rolf Krueger explore force majeure under Texas law and why companies should be aware of the clause if they are unable to fulfill contractual promises due to COVID-19.

What to Do When COVID-19 Infects Your Contractual Duties – (March 31, 2020) Tampa Counsel Guy McConnell explores force majeure under Florida law and how it may be used to help companies that are unable to fulfill contractual promises due to COVID-19.

Former U.S. Attorneys Predict Spike in Federal White-Collar Prosecutions – (March 27, 2020) New Orleans Partner Harry Rosenberg, Tampa Partner Brian Albritton and Baton Rouge Partner Walt Green share prediction of a rise in white-collar investigations and prosecutions as the DOJ and US Attorneys’ offices prioritizes COVID-19 related fraud schemes.

Marine and Energy

New Maritime Requirements Created to Curb COVID-19 Spread – (March 23, 2020) New Orleans Partner Marty McLeod and New Orleans Associate Magda Yiannopoulos explain agency requirements aimed at reducing the threat of transmitting COVID-19 to the Lower Mississippi River maritime community.

How COVID-19 Can Affect Jones Act and LHWCA Claims – (March 19, 2020) New Orleans Partner Kent Morrison and New Orleans Associate Taylor Bologna provide an overview of the potential issues COVID-19 presents to marine employers and shipowners in the Jones Act and the Longshore Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act context.

CDC Issues Guidelines for Ships Amid Coronavirus Outbreak – (March 9, 2020) New Orleans Associate Magda Yiannopoulos summarizes guidelines issued by CDC pertaining to ships originating from, or stopping in, the United States to help prevent, detect and medically manage coronavirus cases.

Tax

What Businesses Need to Do Now to Cope With the COVID-19 Downturn – (March 23, 2020) New Orleans Counsel Rick Shelby and Partner Bart Bacigalupi discuss factors to consider in this economic downturn and why bankruptcy may be a solution for some businesses.

Washington's Response to Coronavirus: Certain Tax Matters – (March 18, 2020) Baton Rouge Partner Ryan Moon and Baton Rouge Associate Bill Mitchell discuss recent legislation affecting tax credits as well as tax filing/payment relief.

Telehealth

Notification of Enforcement Discretion for telehealth remote communications during the COVID-19 nationwide public health emergency – (March 19, 2020) The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) will exercise its enforcement discretion and will not impose penalties for non-compliance with HIPAA against providers in connection with the good faith provision of telehealth during this national emergency.

OIG Policy Statement Regarding Physicians and Other Practitioners That Reduce or Waive Amounts Owed by Federal Health Care Program Beneficiaries for Telehealth Services During the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Outbreak – (March 17, 2020) The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) will not subject practitioners to administrative sanctions for waiving patient cost-sharing obligations for telehealth services furnished during this national emergency.

President Trump Expands Telehealth Benefits for Medicare Beneficiaries During COVID-19 Outbreak – (March 17, 2020) The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services explain the recent expansion of Medicare telehealth coverage.

Telemedicine Health Care Provider Fact Sheet – (March 17, 2020) The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services lays out the expansion of telehealth with 1135 waiver as well as the types of virtual services, including Medicare telehealth visits, virtual check-ins and e-visits.

Medicare Telehealth Frequently Asked Questions – (March 17, 2020) The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services provide answers to frequently asked questions regarding telehealth services.

Patient Distancing: The Critical Role Telehealth Will Play During the Coronavirus Pandemic – (March 13, 2020) New Orleans Partner Beau Haynes discusses recent law that provides supplemental funding and eases Medicare reimbursement for telehealth services related to the coronavirus.