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Zoom Courts Will Stick Around as Pandemic Forces Seismic Change

July 30, 2020, 5:55 PM

Here are the day’s top coronavirus stories from the team at Bloomberg Law:

  • ZOOM COURTS: Courts forced to accelerate years of innovation into weeks may never go back to how they did business before the pandemic, according to interviews with more than 30 state and federal judges, lawyers and court staff in 16 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. The embrace of technology is a revolution for many courts that have historically resisted it.
  • REFUND CLAIMS: The Arizona Board of Regents won dismissal of a proposed class action seeking the cost of room, board, and certain fees after public universities in the state went online for the Spring 2020 semester, after the District of Arizona found the plaintiffs failed to provide sufficient notice of the claims.
  • MILLIONS STILL WAITING: The poorest Americans are among the least likely to have received a direct payment authorized by the federal government four months ago. While they continue to wait for their first relief check, lawmakers are talking about sending out another round.

Editor’s Top Picks

Federal Panel to Weigh Consolidation of Pandemic Coverage Suits
Small businesses and their insurers are set to plead their case to a special panel of federal judges on the prospect of combining a multitude of lawsuits over pandemic-linked business loss coverage in a single court venue.

U.S. Jobless Claims Rise a Second Week in Sign of Growing Risks
The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits increased for a second straight week, a sign the economic rebound is increasingly at risk with Congress poised to potentially let supplemental $600 payments expire.

Trump’s Green Card Wealth Test Rule Blocked During Pandemic
The Trump administration was blocked by a federal judge from screening out green card applicants who might become dependent on public benefits during the national emergency.

Nevada OSHA Takes Lead Enforcing Worker Virus Protections
While federal OSHA hasn’t yet handed out many Covid-19 citations, Nevada’s state-run worker safety agency has been issuing citations for several weeks to companies such as Walmart Inc. and contractors building Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.

U.S. Women’s Soccer Trial Pushed Back to January Due to Covid-19
The trial over the U.S. women’s soccer team’s claims that they were subjected to lesser travel conditions and provided with inferior medical and training support than the U.S. men’s team has been pushed back to Jan. 26, 2021, because of Covid-19, federal court records show.

Working From Home Is The Easy Part if Big Law Goes Virtual
If Big Law firms adopt “virtual offices,” they should think closely about what their lawyers value most from their employers, Bloomberg Law’s Roy Strom writes.

Realogy Appeals Bid to Close SIRVA Deal Disrupted by Pandemic
Realogy Holdings Corp. wants Delaware’s top court to revive part of its Chancery Court lawsuit over a $400 million business unit sale that Madison Dearborn Partners LLC affiliate SIRVA Worldwide Inc. backed out of over the outbreak.

California Pizza Kitchen Is Latest Chain to File For Bankruptcy
California Pizza Kitchen Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in Houston on Wednesday, becoming the latest restaurant chain to try to cut debt as it grapples with the pandemic.

Florida Chiropractor Spent Virus Aid on Netflix, Gym, DOJ Says
A Florida chiropractor allegedly paid for Netflix, a gym membership, and other personal expenses with the more than $200,000 in small business loans he received from federal Covid-19 funding, the Justice Department said.

INSIGHT: A Blueprint for Opening a Law Firm During the Pandemic
Starting a legal practice during an economic downturn has many obstacles. Nellie Akalp, founder and CEO of CorpNet.com, offers actionable steps for startup success, including how to secure a domain name, what business structure is best for law firms, and how to secure clients while working remotely.

INSIGHT: PPP Litigation Trends Signal Court Battles Ahead for Banks
Paycheck Protection Program litigation is still in its early stages, and litigation risk exposure for banks will depend on a number of factors, according to Graham H. Ryan, partner with Jones Walker LLP. He offers some risk mitigation strategies and says additional guidance and forthcoming court opinions will provide more insight into the viability of litigation claims and defenses.

Click here for updates on how federal courts are operating during the pandemic.

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Editor’s Note: The Bloomberg Law news team has been closely covering the legal, regulatory, business, and tax implications of the coronavirus pandemic. This daily email highlights the top stories of the day, across practice areas. To unsubscribe, please adjust your Bloomberg Law newsletter settings. For assistance, contact our help desk at 888-560-2529 or help@bloomberglaw.com.

To contact the reporter on this story: Molly Ward in Washington at mward@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Meghashyam Mali at mmali@bloombergindustry.com

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