The materials in our Resources section are for informational purposes only, without any representation that they are accurate or complete. These publications do not constitute legal advice and do not create an attorney-client relationship between the reader and any other person, nor are they an offer to create such a relationship. These publications are current as of the date written, but laws change over time and vary from state to state. As a result, the information presented here may not be timely and/or appropriate for any state not specifically addressed in a publication. Consult an attorney if you have questions regarding the content of any publication.

Resources

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Posted on March 29, 2021

To perform their services, many nonprofits rely on volunteers to drive.  The circumstances in which a volunteer will drive vary widely, from transporting supplies to taking senior citizens to doctors’ appointments.  Regardless of the reason volunteers get behind the wheel, nonprofits should develop a plan to mitigate the risk of having a volunteer on the road on its behalf.  This article outlines steps your nonprofit can take to minimize those risks, whether your volunteers drive their own car or your nonprofits’ car or whether they are driving themselves or driving with passengers.

Posted on March 25, 2021

In this episode of the PBPA Podcast, Curtis Romig shares his strategies for minimizing and managing vendor disputes. For each step of the vendor relationship, our guest shares his practical tips to keep your potential disputes to a minimum and reduce the risk of litigation.

Episode 13 Transcript – Strategies to Minimize and Manage Vendor Disputes

Posted on March 25, 2021

Nonprofit staff and board are all on the same team, but problems can arise if the roles of team members are unclear. In this webcast, PBPA’s Justine Cowan, who has served as both an executive director and a board member herself, will discuss how to navigate the complex board-staff relationship, including:

• Key policies that strengthen the board-staff partnership;

• How board and staff duties may evolve as an organization grows;

• Troubleshooting issues when the board-staff line gets blurred.

Speaker: Justine Cowan, Staff Attorney at PBPA

View the Webcast

 

 

Posted on March 17, 2021

On March 11, 2021, President Biden signed into law the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA).  ARPA includes a 100% government subsidy of COBRA premiums for “assistance eligible individuals” through September.  COBRA applies to health plans offered by nonprofit employers with more than 20 employees. Read this article to understand who is eligible for these subsidies, what your nonprofit’s obligations are in notifying eligible former or current employees, and potential employer tax credits.

Posted on March 15, 2021

As vaccines for COVID-19 become more readily available, employers are considering how they are going to address vaccines and those who have or have not been vaccinated in the workplace.  Currently, there are more questions than answers about the legal implications of mandating vaccines or providing vaccine incentive programs. The resources listed below may provide valuable information as employers are deciding whether or not to mandate vaccines, whether or not to provide incentives for receiving a vaccine, and how employees should interact with each other and the pubic as they begin to be vaccinated:

This video from Baker McKenzie discusses how the availability of the vaccine changes the return to the workplace.

This guidance from McDermott Will & Emery discusses what employers can require in relation to the COVID-19 vaccine.

This article from Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP discusses what employers who are contemplating vaccine incentive programs should consider.

This article from Baker McKenzie and this article from Seyfarth provide important information about CDC guidance for fully-vaccinated people, and what protections should be in place in the workplace and in interacting with others.

Posted on February 26, 2021

When you are tirelessly focusing on your nonprofit’s mission, the importance of legal contracts may not be one of the first things to cross your mind. Nevertheless, contracts are crucial for any nonprofit organization, both for enforcing your rights, as well as protecting you from liability. This article provides a brief, basic overview of common contracts topics, as well as best practices when entering into contracts.

Posted on February 24, 2021

The Employee Retention Credit (“ERC”) was established by the CARES Act last year to encourage eligible employers to keep employees on their payroll through the use of tax credits during the COVID-19 pandemic. On December 27, 2020, the Economic Aid Act (“EAA”) amended the ERC to make it a much more useful option for eligible small nonprofits. This article  covers the original ERC (under the CARES Act) and the expanded ERC (under the EAA), including explanations on which economic quarters your nonprofit might be eligible for the ERC, how to calculate your credit and recommended documentation to maintain a record.

Posted on February 23, 2021

Social media makes a great way to communicate with nonprofit clients, stakeholders, donors, and the general public. Almost all posts use your organization’s or another’s intellectual property to spread the word. Intellectual property includes copyrighted content (like images, videos, and text), brands and logos and individuals’ rights of publicity. During this presentation, we’ll talk through the best practices and common pitfalls of using intellectual property with social media, including:

  • Properly identifying your organization’s content
  • How to best use others’ content without infringing it, including ‘what is fair use?’
  • What is an “individual’s right to publicity” and how to avoid violating it
  • Why it’s important to train staff and volunteers who post on behalf of your organization about these best practices

Speaker: Creighton Frommer, Chief Counsel, Intellectual Property at RELX

View the webcast

 

Posted on February 22, 2021

On January 29, 2021, OSHA* issued a new guidance addressing mitigating and preventing the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace. This article by Jackson Lewis provides a thorough discussion of the new guidance and its potential implications for employers. Much of this new guidance reiterates information that has previously been provided by OSHA and the Centers for Disease Control. It also points out issues that OSHA considers to be important and insights into what might be included in a new standard on this subject that is expected to be issued in March of 2021. Please be aware that one item the new guidance suggests is that vaccines be provided at no cost to employees. This article on whether or not to mandate vaccines may provide additional helpful information as employers are considering how to proceed. Keep in mind, as the vaccine is being distributed, that OSHA continues to recommend that all existing safety precautions being taken in the workplace (i.e. masks, social distancing, personal protective equipment, etc.) continue even after employees have been vaccinated. If you have questions about this OSHA guidance, please contact your PBPA attorney.

* Need a quick reminder on what “OSHA” stands for and which employers are subject to compliance?  The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulates safety in the workplace and issues standards for safety in various industries and workplace situations. All employers have a general duty under the federal Occupational Safety and Health Act administered by OSHA to provide a safe workplace to their employees. In addition to issuing binding standards that govern employer behavior, OSHA also issues guidance from time to time, which are not binding but provide insight into OSHA’s views on how to keep employees safe.

Posted on February 15, 2021

 

In the Bostock case, the US Supreme Court affirmed that Title VII’s protection against sex discrimination also includes sexual orientation or gender identity (see this article). The Biden administration has issued an Executive Order on Preventing and Combating Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation, Executive Order No. 13988, which reaffirms the Bostock Supreme Court decision, and extends its protections to all federal laws that prohibit discrimination based on sex, including laws addressing employment, housing, education, immigration and health care. Employers should review existing policies, protocols and training they provide to be sure they comply with these expanded non-discrimination requirements.