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.

COVID-19

See the full list for COVID-19
Posted on March 31, 2020

Corporate Governance During a PandemicEven with so much going on in the world, the obligations of corporate governance remain. This article will share recommendations on how to help your nonprofit comply with its legal obligations for governance.

Posted on March 31, 2020

The way that business is being conducted in nonprofit workplaces is changing rapidly because of the global pandemic. In this webcast, Lori Shapiro, PBPA Employment Counsel, will discuss the evolving workplace, legal considerations that may influence employer actions and decisions, and existing and newly enacted laws, including the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, that will affect the nonprofit workplace.

View the webcast here

Posted on March 27, 2020

Loans Available under the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan ProgramThe Small Business Administration currently offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL). These loans may be helpful to small nonprofits during the COVID-19 outbreak. They may be applied for in addition to the Paycheck Protection Loans available under the CARES Act.

Posted on March 27, 2020

The CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act), passed in the U.S. Congress and is expected to be signed into law. Among many other things, the Act amends the Small Business Act to create a new Paycheck Protection Business Loan Program. For a limited time, the Small Business Administration (SBA) will provide 100% federally-backed loans to nonprofit organizations with 500 or fewer employees to help pay operational costs like payroll, rent, health benefits, insurance premiums, utilities, etc. Under the CARES Act, some of these loan amounts are forgivable. However, the amount that may be forgiven will be reduced if the employer makes any employee cuts or reductions in wages. This article provides details on the Paycheck Protection Business Loan Program.

Posted on March 26, 2020

What if your facilities are required to be closed next week because of a novel virus? What if your offices are flooded next month? In this presentation, Jim Leonard will talk about how to prepare for potential natural disasters, and how to deal with insurance companies and brokers in the aftermath. Making decisions in the traumatic aftermath of such an event is tough, so be prepared by tuning in.

“I sure wasn’t ready to deal with a fire. Information like this can mitigate the shock, that will surely be felt. I wish I knew before the fire, what I know now, that’s for sure – just today I was thinking how I wish I had taken different actions, that if I had not been is such a state of shock, I could have been more effective. This webcast will be time well spent for anyone, I can speak to that!” – PBPA client

View the webcast here

Posted on March 24, 2020

Updated March 31, 2020
Please see this link for Frequently Asked Questions related to the new Family and Sick Leave obligations imposed by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and other employment and benefits questions you may have as you are managing your workforce through this crisis. Please be aware that these FAQs have been updated to reflect additional guidance issued by the U.S. Department of Labor at the end of March 2020. Please contact your PBPA attorney if you have additional questions

Posted on March 19, 2020

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (the “Act”) was signed into law on March 18, 2020 and goes into effect on April 2, 2020. This law is a financial aid package intended to address the Coronavirus outbreak. It includes several employment-related provisions that affect will employers with fewer than 500 employees, including nonprofits. Employers are required to provide family leave for public health emergencies and paid sick leave. Employers have 15 days to determine how they will comply with the Act and start implementing it. They will also need to provide notice to employees of these new requirements through postings and policies. While the Act provides the Department of Labor with the ability to issue regulations to exempt certain employers with fewer than 50 employees from the family leave requirements, please be aware that no such regulations have, as yet, been issued. See this new Legal Alert for more information.

Posted on March 19, 2020

Unfortunately, in this new world of the COVID-19 pandemic, many of our clients are being faced with the need to curtail operations, and either reduce employee hours or lay off employees. Here is a notice from the Georgia Department of Labor about a requirement for all Georgia Employers to file partial unemployment claims on behalf of employees working less than their regular hours due to the COVID-19 outbreak. An employer that fails to file a claim if an eligible reduction in hours or layoff occurs may be held responsible for repaying the agency for any benefits paid to employees.

Posted on March 17, 2020


Updated on March 31, 2020

New information and legislation surrounding COVID-19 (the novel coronavirus) is coming out daily as the situation rapidly changes. PBPA, with our staff and network of dedicated volunteers, are working to keep you up-to-date on all the legal questions you might have for your nonprofit organization.
Employment

• You have lots of questions around the recent Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). You can find a summary of FFCRA in THIS ARTICLE, answers to most of your questions in this FAQ by PBPA or this FAQ by the U.S. Department of Labor, and a form policy to assist your organization’s response to FFCRA HERE.
• For any organizations with fewer than 500 employees, posters must be posted onsite at workplace(s) to notify employees about FFCRA benefits. Notice can be sent to remote employees via email, postal mail, or an internal company website. Read this guidance from the U.S. Department of Labor for more information.
• Georgia made some changes to provide state partial unemployment benefits. Learn more HERE. Learn more about how those benefits are calculated in this order by the Georgia Department of Labor.
• There are many factors to consider as you try to keep your workforce healthy and continue to serve your community. Read these COVID-19: FAQs for Employers for insight on legal requirements and best practices to minimize risk to you & your workforce, as you continue to work towards your mission.
If you have a specific COVID-19 contingency plan or employment question, please reach out to your PBPA attorney.

Additional Questions Answered
How can the CARES Act help my nonprofit? The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”) was signed into law on Friday, March 27 and should provide financial relief to nonprofits in numerous ways. A general summary of available relief is provided here.
Can you provide more specifics about the 100% federally-backed loans available through the CARES Act to nonprofit organizations? Yes we can! More guidance is available here.
Can I get out of my lease if I can’t make lease payments for April, because of COVID related issues? It depends on what’s in your lease. Your contract may include sections regarding force majeure, quiet enjoyment and space that is “untenantable”. More information is available in this article. Reach out to you PBPA attorney to discuss the specifics of your lease.
Can we continue to host our weekly community gatherings or provide services? Governor Kemp has given the Georgia Department of Health authority to close gatherings of more than 10 people, unless they can ensure 6 feet of distance between attendees. Many Atlanta area counties and municipalities have issued even more restrictive shelter-in-place orders. If your organization is not providing “essential services”, then no in-person work should be provided at facilities in areas with shelter-in-place orders. Some examples of essential services include a food bank, residential facility, shelter or healthcare services. Check your city or county’s specific definition of “essential services,” because it does vary.
We had major event planned, can I get my deposit back from the venue? We can’t continue to provide programming due to the shelter-in-place restrictions, can the other party cancel our contract? Your contracts with event service providers or for providing programming services hopefully include force majeure provisions or impossibility clauses, which may excuse contract performance in the event performance becomes impossible (like in a pandemic!). Reach out to your PBPA attorney so we can review the specifics of your contract. Also, reach out to your insurance agent to see what coverage your policies may provide.
Can your healthcare organization use online video platforms for communications with staff, providers and patients? OCR issued a statement that it wouldn’t impose sanctions for use of online platforms such as Skype/FaceTime: Read statement
How does the pandemic affect your obligation to file tax returns? The IRS has established a special web page to help taxpayers, businesses and others affected by the coronavirus. The web page will be updated as new information becomes available.
How about board meetings? Your board can and should continue conducting its meetings, and they can fulfill this obligation while socially distanced. Read this article on Conducting Board Business Virtually for more guidance.

Additional Resources

• Guidance for Nonprofits

– Georgia Centers for Nonprofits: Nonprofit Guide to COVID Planning
– Venable Webinar: COVID-19: What Your Nonprofit Needs to Know

• Public Health Guidance: The CDC provides guidance and recommendations for your role as an employer, with Guidance for Employers to Plan and Respond, and as an organization serving the community, with Get your Community Organization Ready.