Prepping for a Surge of COVID-19 Bad-Faith Issues

Author: Lynn Allen

Claims Magazine – August 2020

In March 2020, the United States came to a screeching halt. Schools closed, businesses shut down and the national economy saw its largest decline in more than a decade. The wave of insurance coverage litigation over COVID-19 losses was inevitable. And as policyholders seek to recoup business-related losses, business interruption claims are becoming the new normal. With insurance companies denying such claims for lack of physical damage or loss to property, bad faith lawsuits are soaring and businesses are suing their insurance companies in increasing numbers.

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Separation of Powers and Mandamus: to Release or Not to Release Prisoners During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Author: Michael Kutzner

August 3, 2020 11:03am

COVID-19 (“COVID”) has been an ever-increasing topic of discussion around the globe. In the recent weeks, COVID case numbers have climbed to over 4,000,000 in the United States. Close-quarter-populace facilities, such as hospitals, nursing homes, and correction facilities experience great difficulty in controlling the spread of COVID if residents become infected. In Washington, case law is already being established…

New York Bill Narrows Liability Immunity for Nursing Homes and Hospitals

Author: Emily Berman

August 3, 2020 10:53am

This week, the New York legislature approved a measure that would narrows the legal immunity law that gave hospitals and nursing homes broad protections against potential coronavirus litigation. The immunity law, which was passed in Spring 2020, gave hospitals and nursing homes cover from possible lawsuits related to the coronavirus crisis. The new bill keeps the immunity law intact overall, but removes protections against…

The California Court’s “Fastpass” to Trial within 120 days – Considerations in Approaching California’s Preference Statute in a Post-Pandemic World

Author: Rob Olson

Guest Editor: Robert Bernstein

August 3, 2020 10:16am

Imagine standing in the line for Disney’s new Star Wars ride after everyone receives the Coronavirus vaccine. At first, you may breathe sigh of relief – but then you realize that it might take the entire day to get on the ride. When, all of a sudden, a family strolls past everyone in another line—the “Fastpass” line.  Once jury trials finally resume in California, there will be an even longer line…

Maricopa County Superior Court Creates Certified Arbitrator Program in Response to COVID-19

Author: Kimberly Sayre

Guest Editor: Robert Bernstein

August 3, 2020 9:00am

In response to the COVID-19 public health crisis, Maricopa County Superior Court recently announced a new program designed to help move cases to resolution during this unprecedented time. The Certified Arbitrator Program is the result of research conducted by various task forces who studied measures across departments to make court operations and procedures more efficient and responsive. This program allows the parties to any case where the amount in controversy is between $50,001 and $300,000…

Nevada Courts Are Opening Up; What Will That Look Like?

Author: Victoria Hightower

July 8, 2020 12:00pm

On March 12, 2020, Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak issued a Declaration of Emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  On March 13, 2020, the President of the United States declared a nationwide emergency pursuant to §501(6) of the Robert T. Stanford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 5121-5207.  To mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the Center for Disease Control recommended social distancing and mandated wearing facemasks.  Governor Sisolak, in Directive 021…

Employment Claims in the Coronavirus Era

Author: Rachel Donnelly

June 9, 2020 9:00am

As courthouses begin to slowly open their doors following the coronavirus shutdown, attorneys are already filing lawsuits encompassing employment law claims stemming from the coronavirus pandemic. Some trends among these claims are starting to form. This article will explore the types of employment claims being filed related to the coronavirus pandemic and which will likely continue to be filed for the foreseeable future.

COVID-19 Interrupts Your Business: Will Your Business Interruption Coverage Apply?

Author: Louis R. Barella

May 11, 2020 9:00am

As businesses in California remain closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, their owners have looked to recoup their losses by turning to their insurance policies.  The American Property Casualty Insurance Association estimated nationwide virus-related losses to businesses with 100 or fewer employees would amount to between $220 billion and $383 billion a month. (S.F. Chronicle, April 28, 2020). About one-third of U.S. Businesses have…

Evaluating Novel Lawsuits in the Wake of the Novel Coronavirus

Author: Rob Olson

May 6, 2020 9:30pm

Due to the novel Coronavirus, there are more questions than answers surrounding how the civil landscape will play out once the courts reopen. Many of us who defend civil lawsuits are trying to figure out what types of lawsuits the plaintiffs’ bar will dream up in order to line their pockets. After reviewing the kinds of Continuing Legal Education (CLE) offered, hundreds of plaintiffs blog posts, and how industries are marketing to plaintiff’s lawyers, the consensus is the plaintiffs’ bar does not yet know what novel lawsuit will come from the novel Coronavirus…

Viruses in Litigation

Author: Michael Kutzner

Guest Editor: Christopher Schon

May 6, 2020 7:55pm

Unlike the now-well-known Coronavirus, Hantavirus is not spread from person to person, except in a rare few patients. Hantavirus live their lifecycle in rodents, but apparently do no harm to this host. However, when passed to a human, the results can be deadly, regardless of age or heath condition. According to the CDC, Hantavirus infections have a mortality rate of approximately 38 percent. Ehrhart v. King County, 2020 WL 1649891 (2020)…

Discovery of Litigation Funding Documents

Author: Rachel Donnelly

May 6, 2020 4:38pm

As a result of the coronavirus, many businesses are inevitably slowing down. By contrast, some businesses are experiencing an uptick in business as a result of the current pandemic. One such business is litigation funding.  Litigation funders enable a person involved in a lawsuit to litigate or arbitrate without having to pay for it. Litigation funders can pay some or all of the costs and expenses associated with a dispute in return for a share of the…

Telemedicine: An Invaluable Weapon During the COVID-19 Crisis

Author: Emily Straub

April 10, 2020 4:18pm

Daily news about the ever-rising statistics on COVID-19 cases and deaths is a constant reminder we are all vulnerable to contracting the coronavirus. While we do not yet have a vaccine to combat this pandemic, telemedicine (a.k.a., “telehealth”) has proven to be a crucial weapon in fighting the spread of COVID-19.

Keeping Cases Moving With Remote Depositions in Nevada

Author: Nathan E. Malone

April 6, 2020 3:04pm

Prior to recent world events, taking depositions by remote means was seen more as a luxury to avoid travel costs for relatively unimportant, but necessary, depositions.  It was also seen as an inferior way to take depositions.  However, in the current world environment, utilizing and applying remote deposition technology can actually be ordered by a court when the circumstances require, which may likely begin to occur more often. 

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