Michael Slan is the managing partner of Fogler Rubinoff LLP in Toronto, Canada, and a member of the International Lawyers Network. In this episode, Lindsay has a candid conversation with Michael about the importance of communication in this time of pandemic, why deep cuts may not be the best cuts, and what leadership looks like in the face of market downturns and global lockdowns. Listen here.
Monthly Archives: April 2020
Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI)’s COVID-19 Working Capital Scheme
Many businesses are faced with difficult decisions arising from the COVID-19 crisis, and are undertaking an analysis of their business and devising a plan for how they will get through the challenging weeks and months ahead. Consideration should be given to the range of options which have opened up in recent weeks in order to guide their businesses and employees and out of this unprecedented pandemic. One such option which has been made available for Irish Small and Medium Enterprises (“SME”) is the SBCI COVID-19 Working Capital Scheme, the details of which are set out below.
EEOC Adds COVID-19 Testing Guidance to Its Technical Assistance on COVID-19 and Anti-Discrimination Laws
On the heels of adding Return to Work guidance to its technical assistance for employers, “What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Law” (discussed here), on April 23, 2020 the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) issued an update addressing COVID-19 testing by employers. This latest guidance acknowledges that COVID-19 presents a direct threat to the health of others sufficient to justify testing. It cautions, however, that employers should only use tests that are “accurate and reliable.” Specifically the FAQ states:
As featured in #WorkforceWednesday: The COVID-19 pandemic has created a sudden imbalance in the labor market. While many employers are implementing layoffs or furloughs, other “essential” businesses are searching for additional employees to meet demand. Attorneys Nathaniel Glasser and Ian Carleton Schaefer discuss how employers can use creative approaches to address this imbalance. Read more about the strategies for employers (subscription required).
Special Immigration Alert: President Trump Temporarily Suspends Immigration; Canada Extends Non-Essential Travel Ban
President Trump Signs Executive Order to “Temporarily Suspend Immigration into the United States”
On April 20, 2020, President Trump tweeted, “In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens, I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend immigration into the United States!” The vague tweet triggered many questions and concerns as to the scope of the immigration suspension and the impact it would have on many foreign nationals and their respective U.S. employers.
At the beginning of the month Russian regulators implemented a draft law, which provides for the possibility of the Government of the Russian Federation by its act to introduce a moratorium on initiation of bankruptcy proceedings under natural and man-made emergencies, significant changes in the ruble exchange rate and similar exceptional circumstances (for more details see the update). The moratorium on bankruptcy has been in force in Russia since April 4, but now the Law on Bankruptcy is being corrected again. The need for amendments is due to the rushed adoption of the Law, as well as the reaction to criticism from the professional community The law providing for the amendment was signed by the President of the Russian Federation and comes into force on April 24. In particular, the new law establishes the following changes to the regime of the moratorium on bankruptcy.
Today, on 23 April 2020, the Cabinet of Ministers amended the criteria for granting idle time benefits. The most essential amendments:
- the reduction in turnover for any undertaking affected by the crisis shall be calculated by comparing the turnover in March or April 2020 with the average income from economic activity for the months worked in 2019;
- self-employed persons who perform pedagogical or creative work on a part-time basis and whose monthly income does not exceed the minimum wage are eligible for idle time benefit;
- idle time benefit shall not be granted to members of management board if during the preceding year and at the time of assessment of the application the member of the management board has been punished for violations in the areas of tax and customs or for the breach of the regulatory enactments governing labour legal relationship, unless a warning or a fine not exceeding EUR 151 has been imposed for a single violation, and the total amount of penalties per year does not exceed EUR 500.
GET A HEAD START — AVOID PROSPECTUS APPROVAL DELAYS BY PRE-FILING A PROSPECTUS ON A CONFIDENTIAL BASIS
On March 5, 2020 the Canadian Securities Administrators (the “CSA“) introduced a harmonized process for full reviews of prospectuses on a confidential pre-filing basis for non-investment issuers (the “Pre-File Process“). The concept of pre-filing a prospectus for comment is not new, however it was previously applied inconsistently by the various regulators. This prompted the CSA to respond by releasing its Staff Notice 43-310 — Confidential Pre-File Review of Prospectuses (for non-investment fund issuers) (the “Staff Notice“) to help harmonize the pre-filing process, and to help issuers obtain more certainty and flexibility in prospectus offerings. Read the full article.
As we previously reported, last year, New York State expanded its election leave law to allow employees more paid time off if needed in order to vote on Election Day (increasing the paid time off from two to three hours). However, in the State’s 2020-21 budget, signed by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo on April 3, 2020, new amendments to New York’s Election Leave Law (Election Law § 3-110) (the “Law”) undo the changes implemented by last year’s legislation and essentially reinstates the prior time-off rules, which provide that if an employee is a registered voter without “sufficient time” outside of scheduled working hours to vote in an election, the employee may take up to two hours of paid time off from work. The Law went into effect immediately.
By Theodore Goloff, from our Labour and Employment Law Group
April 23, 2020 — Normally, when an employer terminates an employee, “reasonable notice” or pay in lieu thereof is required pursuant to Article 2091 of the Civil Code of Québec. This obligation is in addition to statutory notice under the Labour Standards Act.
The factors to be taken into account have been addressed in several judgments of the Quebec Court of Appeal, without such factors being hermetically sealed. In fact, there are numerous judgments to the effect that reasonable notice is to be decided by the Courts on a case-by-case basis. This presents important problems for employers who are asked to calculate reasonable notice at the time of termination, without knowing, with certainty, how the whole matter is going to play out.