May 20, 2020
May 11, 2020
Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in the activities of places of public accommodation. In the past 7 years, the number of ADA Title III federal lawsuits has more than quadrupled, with 11,053 suits filed in 2019. On May 15, 2020, Fishman attorney Mike Dodson participated in a panel that presented this important topic at the American Bar Association’s Annual Real Property Trusts & Estates (RPTE) National CLE Conference (The Virtual Experience 2020). Mike discussed the applicability of Title III and key considerations, such as architectural standards for new and altered buildings, reasonable accommodations to policies, practices, and procedures, and effective communication with people with hearing, vision, or speech disabilities. In addition, Mike explained various avenues to achieve compliance, pre-suit, and how to defend Title III claims in litigation. Read about the presentation here.
March 27, 2020
Fishman Haygood Partner, Charles Landry, is honored by the Baton Rouge Area Foundation as the winner of the 2020 Marcia Kaplan Kantrow Baton Rouge Visionary award for using his skills and determination to implement the master plan for downtown Baton Rouge. Charles helped the state consolidate its rented spaces into state-owned Art-Deco inspired buildings on North Street. He was also central to the expansion of downtown hotels, beginning with the success of the Capital House Hotel. Charles was also an early proponent of and the legal mind behind much of the Arts Block, including its early anchor, the Shaw Center for the Arts, and the many new restaurants and apartments that followed. BRAF selects award winners whose vision and action fosters smart growth of the Capital Region based on New Urbanist principles. Read more about Landry’s award in BRAF’s magazine Currents.
March 26, 2020
On March 25, 2020, the United States Senate passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) by a vote of 96-0. This federal stimulus bill appropriates $349 billion in loans to small businesses through the newly created Paycheck Protection Program under amendments to Section 7(a) of the Small Business Act (SBA). The House of Representatives passed the CARES Act on Friday, March 27, 2020, and President Trump signed it immediately upon House passage. Fishman Haygood has prepared this helpful summary that focuses primarily on the assistance to small businesses provided by the Paycheck Protection Program and tax relief and incentives under the CARES Act.
March 23, 2020
Many business owners are asking whether the circumstances surrounding COVID-19 constitute a force majeure event that may provide an excuse from performance of certain contractual obligations. As Charles Landry recently told the Baton Rouge Business Report, there is no one-size-fits-all answer, business owners “have to look at their contracts and the specific force majeure language to see if this event is covered.” Learn more here.
March 20, 2020
In an effort to curtail the community spread of COVD-19, on March 22, 2020, Governor John Bel Edwards issued a “stay-at-home” order, requiring Louisiana residents to shelter in place until April 13, 2020, unless the order is terminated sooner. Many Louisiana business owners have questions as to whether their businesses can stay open while the order remains in effect. Businesses that provide “essential services” may remain open. Businesses that do not provide “essential services” but have not specifically been ordered to close may remain open, but a 10-person limitation on “gathering size” applies. These non-essential businesses may operate with a skeleton crew of fewer than ten people, with minimum contact with the public, and must engage in proper social distancing. Learn more here.
The past two weeks in Louisiana have been filled with constant new developments and news articles related to the rapid spread of the novel coronavirus and COVID-19, the illness the virus causes. In response, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell, Baton Rouge Mayor Sharon Weston Broome, and other officials in the state have issued proclamations regarding COVID-19 and how it will affect business and government operations, events, taxes, prescriptive periods, and evictions. Read our helpful summary here.