Law Offices of Katrin M. Cusack, Esq.Knowing how to move is secondary to knowing when to move.
AREAS OF PRACTICE
COVID-19: Update of April 29, 2020
YES! YES! YES! I continue to remain open for business!!!
Both phone and Skype appointments are available – phone appointments have proved the most popular. In addition to the “normal” business hour schedule, I am also conducting telephone conferences in the evenings until 10:00 p.m. PDT, and on weekends. I realize it is not easy to take time out from everyday life to deal with legal issues, especially when everyday life has been made even more chaotic because of COVID-19 restrictions. I empathize completely.
The Alameda County Department of Public Health today issued a revised Shelter-In-Place Order. The entire Revised Order can be found here: http://www.acphd.org/media/572718/health-officer-order-20-10-shelter-in-place-20200429.pdf
The Revised Order has loosened restrictions on some outdoor activities, such as (without limitation) golf, gardening, and skateboarding. It is apparent that if the activity is one which can be conducted in solo fashion (that is, without a partner or team), then the activity is more likely than not going to be one the newly permitted activities. If you are unsure whether the activity you are contemplating qualifies, consult with an attorney!
There remain protocols in place which must be observed, the most important of which are: 1) keeping a six foot distance between yourself and the next person; 2) wearing a mask or other face covering which covers the nose and mouth; and 3) hand sanitizer stations and/or facilities for frequent handwashing. Restaurants are still off limits, even when there is outdoor seating – but, curbside pick up is still an option. I encourage everyone to participate in Take Out Tuesdays – small restaurants are definitely struggling. Your patronage is critical to their survival.
Many businesses are hard hit as a result of the strict Shelter In Place Order from March 16, 2020; today’s Revised Order definitely provides some relief for many businesses, and they can slowly come back to life. It is important to remember that the Health Department can easily rein these loosened policies back in if our communities ignore social distancing, mask-wearing, and frequent hand sanitizing/washing protocols.
As far as legal filings, extensions on deadlines have been issued via judicial decree in most counties. It is unclear whether these extensions will be permitted on statute-of-limitations questions, so it is best to err on the side of caution and presume that statute-of-limitations issues cannot be extended simply by judicial decree. Specific protocols aimed at working around Shelter-In-Place Orders vary from county to county, so how to file pleadings when the courts are closed to the public is very much county-dependent. E-filing continues to be a great asset for counties like San Francisco and Santa Clara.
I know that for most clients, Shelter-In-Place Orders have had a highly disruptive effect on their businesses and day to day lives. At the same time, I have heard a myriad of creative ways to work around the restrictions, which has opened up new streams of revenue and new business models. As the saying goes, “Necessity is the mother of invention.” I have had wonderful opportunities to work with many clients in coming up with new ways to conduct business during this COVID-19 crisis; it has been inspiring in many ways to see the creativity and genius employed by many clients in their re-definition and re-branding.
I hope you are all staying healthy, wearing your masks, keeping six feet away from others when you are out, and washing your hands frequently while singing “Happy Birthday”. Although the effects of the COVID-19 shut down will probably last for several years, I am completely confident that with proper foresight and planning, we can find a way to return to “normal” sooner rather than later.
Katrin M. Cusack
Attorney at Law
Serving the Greater San Francisco Bay Area and all of California
Katrin M. Cusack, Esq.
Law Offices of Katrin M. Cusack
111 Deerwood Road, Suite 200
San Ramon, CA 94583
Mailing: P.O. Box 2026, Livermore, CA 94551-2026
Tel: (925) 820-2300
Fax: (925) 820-2310