The National Sea Grant Law Center


Archive: June 2020 Blog Posts

  • COVID-19 Liability Waivers: What You Need to Know
  • June 30th, 2020 — by Betsy Lee Montague — Category: COVID-19 Torts

  • As states begin to reopen, businesses are increasingly taking steps to guard against future liability for coronavirus exposure claims, such as by requiring customers to sign COVID-19 liability waivers and taking customer’s temperatures before entering the business.

    Read More ➜

  • Public Nuisance Lawsuits Against Employers Over COVID-19: What You Need to Know
  • June 29th, 2020 — by Gabi Jackson — Category: COVID-19 Torts

  • As businesses re-open in the midst of COVID-19, workers exposed to coronavirus may attempt to hold employers liable for their sickness. In fact, employees of McDonald’s, Amazon, and Smithfield Foods have already filed suits against these companies under a common law cause of action for public nuisance. Although public nuisance is a common lawsuit in the realm of environmental litigation, its use in the employment context is rare since federal, state, and regulatory bodies typically have purview over workers’ claims. As employees bring these claims, it is unclear whether courts will allow the claims or plaintiffs must seek recourse another way.

    Read More ➜

  • Civil Authority Coverage & COVID-19 Income Losses
  • June 26th, 2020 — by Betsy Lee Montague — Category: COVID-19 Insurance

  • Since March, hundreds of businesses have filed lawsuits against insurance companies for denied lost revenue claims following COVID-19 shelter-in-place orders. Businesses that have been forced to shut down and shelter-in-place in response to government orders may be able to recover lost earnings through civil authority insurance coverage. Civil authority insurance is a common extension of coverage in business interruption insurance policies. Civil authority insurance provides coverage for income losses resulting from mandatory government orders that impaired or prohibited access to an insured’s business.

    Read More ➜

  • Bipartisan Legislation Seeks to Provide the Fishing Industry with Additional COVID-19 Disaster Relief
  • June 25th, 2020 — by Gabi Jackson — Category: COVID-19 Fisheries

  • On June 11th, Representative Jared Golden of Maine and Representative Garret Graves of Louisiana proposed bipartisan legislation that would provide fishermen with additional funds from the COVID-19 disaster relief efforts. The proposal seeks to amend the Magnuson–Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA), the principle law governing marine fisheries in the United States.

    Read More ➜

  • Workplace Safety and COVID-19 on Vessels: Who’s in Charge?
  • June 23rd, 2020 — by Caroline Heavey — Category: COVID-19 OSHA

  • In early June, 94 of 126 crew members aboard the F/V American Dynasty tested positive for COVID-19. Despite precautions taken to avoid such an outbreak, the fishing industry and others who make their living working on boats are facing serious challenges responding to COVID-19. It’s hard to imagine crew members being able to consistently stay six feet apart while hauling in nets, for example.

    Read More ➜

  • Business Interruption Insurance & COVID-19 Losses
  • June 22nd, 2020 — by Betsy Lee Montague — Category: COVID-19 Insurance

  • All types of businesses across the nation have incurred substantial losses in earnings due to COVID-19 shutdowns and are struggling to make it through these difficult times. Businesses that were unable to operate during the pandemic either from voluntary or mandatory shutdowns should consult their insurance policies to determine whether they have business interruption coverage. Business interruption insurance generally covers lost earnings incurred from an interruption of normal business operations caused by damage to the insured property. The purpose of the insurance policy is to put the policyholder back in the position it would have been had the interruption not occurred.

    Read More ➜

  • Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Flexibility Act of 2020
  • June 18th, 2020 — by Thomas Finley — Category: COVID-19 PPP

  • The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) was passed as a part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) in response to the needs of businesses experiencing loss of revenues due to government forced shutdowns.

    Read More ➜

  • Workplace Safety Standards Amidst COVID-19
  • June 17th, 2020 — by Caroline Heavey — Category: COVID-19 OSHA

  • The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has issued standards and guidelines for employers to address workplace safety and health concerns relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Read More ➜

  • President Trump Signs Proclamation Opening National Monument to Commercial Fishing
  • June 11th, 2020 — by Madeline Doten — Category: Fisheries Marine Monuments

  • On June 5th, while on a visit to Maine, President Trump signed a proclamation that opens the Northeastern Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument to commercial fishing. This proclamation was made in hopes of helping the fishing industry bounce back after the nation's economic crisis, but it may lead to more legal battles before achieving this goal.

    Read More ➜

  • ABA Committee Webinar Discusses COVID-19 Impacts on Navajo Nation
  • June 9th, 2020 — by Mikayla Mangle — Category: Environmental Justice

  • Indian Country has been especially impacted by COVID-19 due to Native Americans’ ongoing vulnerability to health issues stemming from poor environmental conditions on reservations. The American Bar Association’s Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources (SEER) Native American Resource Committee held a webinar on May 28th, 2020 to discuss the current issues affecting Native American reservations due to COVID-19.

    Read More ➜

Stay Current with
Our Publications

Subscribe today to our free
quarterly publication, The SandBar
— and to our monthly newsletter,
the Ocean and Coastal Case Alert.