April 14, 2020

Litigation during the coronavirus pandemic

Litigation during the coronavirus pandemic

By Brent Carris, Research Analyst, Triple-I

The coronavirus crisis is taking a toll on the U.S. legal
system as courts are restricting access and altering procedures. Dentons, a
global law firm, addressed  the impact of COVID-19  on ongoing cases
in a recent webinar lead by Michael Duvall, Partner; David Quam,
Counsel; and Kelly Graf, Managing Associate.

Litigators have ongoing responsibilities to their clients to
keep up with key deadlines, during the “slowdown”. These responsibilities
include keeping them informed of scheduling, continuing to meet filing
deadlines, and advocating for the clients’ interests. Judges have significant
discretion to keep their cases moving along.

The webinar covered some of the litigation risk facing businesses with “enterprising” plaintiff’s lawyers actively looking for clients. The risks include data breaches arising from remote workers using unsecured home computers to access confidential data; safety and compliance issues related to remote work; exposure to the virus by employees who are not working remotely; event cancellation; claims of false or misleading advertising against companies capitalizing on demand for products like  hand sanitizer; and price gouging.

Dentons has put together a 50-state tracker
that it’s maintaining of coronavirus-related orders, directives, financial
assistance, health and business directives, and updates on court and
legislative sessions.

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