In December 2019, a novel coronavirus that causes the condition COVID-19, began an outbreak of respiratory illness in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. It has since had a massive impact on global business and travel. Brooks Pierce attorneys are closely monitoring the rapidly changing situation in order to provide timely guidance for our clients’ businesses. This page will be regularly updated with information that we trust will prove useful in the coming weeks.

Brooks Pierce has assembled a multi-disciplinary response team to provide up-to-date counsel on a wide variety of issues arising from the COVID-19 outbreak. Our attorneys are ready to respond to client needs during this time of uncertainty.

COVID-19 Hero Highlights

Cintra Develops Partnerships with Nonprofits to Sustain Charlotte Families

Biscuitville Provides Southern Hospitality to Frontline Workers, Students

Lithios Delivers Timely Technology with Healthcare Communication App

Cape Fear Distillery Turns Spirits to Sanitizer


Returning Employees to Work in a COVID-19 World

Navigating the CARES Act

Guidance on Workplace Coronavirus Response Plans

Published Client Alerts


DOL Rules Invalidated
A federal court in New York has invalidated portions of emergency Department of Labor regulations that employers have been using to create their policies...

The CDC (and Others) Change Guidance
The one constant in the COVID-19 pandemic is that the guidance keeps changing...

OSHA Provides Updated Guidance on Workplace Safety as Employees Return to Work
OSHA recently issued an updated "Guidance on Returning to Work" to assist employers and workers during the COVID-19 pandemic...

Employers Receive New Guidance from Three Agencies on COVID-19 Issues
Three agencies have provided updated guidance for employers on essential COVID-19 issues...

Returning Employees to Work in a COVID-19 World
The crisis has not passed, but many employers are reaching out to us about returning their employees to work...

COVID-19 Checklist for North Carolina Employers
Brooks Pierce has been honored to have so many North Carolina employers rely on us for up-to-date guidance on personnel matters stemming from the COVID-19 crisis...

North Carolina Employers May Provide Financial Assistance To Employees Receiving Unemployment Benefits
On April 20, 2020, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order No. 134 permitting employers to provide financial assistance to employees...

The Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act – A Comprehensive Overview
The FFCRA contains two key provisions for employers – the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act (EFMLEA) and the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act (EPSLA)...

The Emergency Family And Medical Leave Expansion Act – A Comprehensive Overview
On March 18, 2020, President Trump signed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) into law...

EEOC Updates COVID-19 Guidance
On April 9, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) posted additional, updated guidance for employers regarding COVID-19...

Employees with Possible Exposure to COVID-19: New CDC Guidance
An employee may have been exposed to COVID-19. What do you do...

Department of Labor Clarifies Scope of FFCRA
The Department of Labor (DOL) shared more insights into the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)...

Department of Labor Answers Critical Questions About New Leave Laws Due to COVID-19 Crisis
Yesterday, March 26, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued additional guidance on how the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) will be applied...

DOL Releases Mandatory Employee Notice Under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act
On March 25, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) published a workplace notice that covered employers...

Department of Labor Issues First Guidance on New Leave Laws
Last night the Department of Labor (DOL) issued its first guidance on how the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) will be applied...

Guidance for Employers with Salaried Employees in Response to COVID-19
Employers are faced with difficult and unpleasant choices in response to the current COVID-19 crisis...

Additional Coronavirus Guidance from EEOC
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has posted guidance for employers ...

New Law Requires Many Employers to Provide Job-Protected Leave and Paid Benefits for Absences Related to COVID-19
Today the U.S. Senate voted to adopt House Bill 6201 with some corrections ...

NC Governor Cooper Expands Unemployment Benefits to Workers Affected by COVID-19
On March 17, 2020, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order No. 118 ...

Important Coronavirus Guidance from EEOC
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has posted guidance for employers ...

Pending Legislation Would Require Job-Protected Leave and Paid Benefits for Absences Related to COVID-19
House Bill 6201 was passed by the U.S. House of Representatives with bipartisan support ...

Workplace Coronavirus Response Plans Must Comply with Applicable Employment Laws
U.S. employers recognize that COVID-19 (commonly referred to as the coronavirus) presents ...


Financial Relief

Farmers, Start Preparing: USDA to Begin Accepting Applications for Coronavirus Relief Payments on May 26
The USDA will begin accepting applications for direct payments to farmers Tuesday, May 26...

USDA's Coronavirus Food Assistance Program
On Friday, April 17, 2020, USDA introduced the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), which aims to compensate farmers, maintain supply chains, and support food security...

Faith-Based Organization Eligibility for SBA Loans Under CARES Act
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) enacted on March 27, 2020 contained several provisions related to the provision of loans by the Small Business Administration (SBA)...

CARES Tax Benefits for Businesses - Increased Deductions, Increased Use of Losses, and Potential Refunds
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) enacted on March 27, 2020 contained several significant business-related tax changes...

Tax Incentives for Employers in the CARES Act
Much of the focus of the attention generated by the CARES Act has been on the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) through the Small Business Association...

Guide to the COVID-19 Paycheck Protection Program and Loan Forgiveness
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or the CARES Act, has been passed by Congress and awaits signature by the President...

Guide to Golden LEAF Rapid Recovery Loan Program
The Golden LEAF Foundation is providing $15 million in funding to launch a rapid recovery loan program in response to economic losses for small businesses related to COVID-19...

Guide to SBA COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program
The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans...

Employer Tax Relief Under COVID-19 Legislation
Much has been made of the cost to employers of the leave required by the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act ...


Business Operations

You've Reopened Your Business After COVID-19. Now What?
As doors are re-opening and employees are returning to work, businesses should take measures to protect themselves...

Preparing Your Business for a Post-COVID-19 World
As shelter-in-place orders begin to lift around the country and here in North Carolina, it is time for companies to shift from disaster response...

Federal And State Protections For Nonprofits Navigating The COVID-19 Pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic creates a unique set of circumstances for nonprofits...

Navigating the COVID-19 Crisis: Planning Tips to Avoid Business Disruption
In the evolving COVID-19 pandemic, businesses are having to re-evaluate their short-term and long-term needs...

Potential Insurance Coverage for COVID-19 Losses
As companies navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, they should take stock of existing insurance policies that may provide coverage...

Reviewing Business Contracts in Light of the COVID-19 Crisis
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, companies are facing a wide array of business challenges, many of which would likely not have been contemplated a few weeks ago...

COVID-19 and the Increased Cybersecurity Risk in a Work-From-Home World
As COVID-19 has spread throughout the world and within the United States, companies of all sizes have had to make quick decisions about how to implement work-from-home procedures...


Government/Judicial Statements

Governor Extends “Safer at Home” Phase 2 COVID-19 Restrictions
On Aug. 5, Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order 155, which further extends North Carolina’s “Safer At Home” Phase 2 through 5 p.m. on Sept. 11, 2020...

Governor Outlines School Opening Guidelines and Extends Phase Two of COVID-19 Restrictions
On July 14, Governor Roy Cooper outlined a plan for K-12 school openings and extended the “Safer at Home” Phase 2 of the state’s plan to respond to the COVID-19 virus.   

Governor Extends Phase Two of COVID-19 Restrictions and Adds New Face Covering Requirement for North Carolina
On June 24, Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order 147, which extends Phase Two of the COVID-19 restrictions until July 17...

North Carolina Moving to Phase Two of Easing COVID-19 Restrictions
Governor Roy Cooper took additional executive action this week related to North Carolina’s response to the COVID-19 virus...

North Carolina Enacts New Requirements for Remote Open Meetings During State of Emergency
On May 4, 2020, the Governor signed into law the COVID-19 Recovery Act (the “Act”), effective immediately, which was passed by both houses of the General Assembly on May 2, 2020...

North Carolina Enacts New Laws to Address COVID-19 Matters
Two bills (S 704, a policy bill, and H 1043, an appropriations bill) to address COVID-19’s impact on North Carolina were enacted over the weekend...

NC Governor Cooper Extends Statewide “Stay At Home” Order And Order Closing Schools
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper took additional executive action this week related to the COVID-19 virus and its impact on the state...

What are all those dates again? And another extension from Justice Beasley
I know it is difficult keeping track of all the moving dates and deadlines...

COVID-19 Criminal Justice Update (April 1, 2020)
With coronavirus 
infections multiplying exponentially around the globe, countries, states, and localities are taking action to slow the spread...

NC Governor Cooper Issues Statewide "Stay at Home" Order (Critical Infrastructure and Essential Business Operations Continue)
On March 27, 2020, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order No. 121, a statewide "Stay at Home" order, which is intended to slow the spread of COVID-19 in our state...

More Judicial Updates on COVID-19
North Carolina's courts have taken further steps to address the impact of COVID-19...

Judicial Updates on COVID-19
Criminal Justice Section members should pay close attention to rapidly developing guidance from state ...



Guidance on PPE for North Carolina Schools
On July 14, 2020, Gov. Roy Cooper outlined a plan for K-12 school openings...

NC Governor Cooper Signs COVID-19 Recovery Act Impacting Public Education
On April 24, 2020, Governor Cooper closed schools for in-person instruction for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year...

Schools Are Closed. Now What? Guidance For North Carolina Public School Districts
In light of CDC recommendations regarding COVID-19, North Carolina Governor Cooper ...



Considerations for Customers Distressed Due to COVID-19
When a company's customers declare bankruptcy, the company faces significant risk.


Intellectual Property

USPTO Grants Another Extension Of Time Due To COVID-19, Provided That Filings Are Made By June 1, 2020
While the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) remains open for online filings, it has further extended many trademark and patent deadlines due to the COVID-19 outbreak...

USPTO Still Open, but Extends Many Trademark Deadlines Due to COVID-19
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) remains open for filings.


Firm Statement

Brooks Pierce's Response to COVID-19
It is now self-evident that all of us have been impacted by COVID-19 ...


Brooks Pierce COVID-19 Response Team

Banking/Securities/Corporate Finance

Brooks Pierce Attorney Iain MacSween

Iain MacSween

Bankruptcy/Financial Restructuring

Brooks Pierce Attorney John Small

John Small

Business Disruption/Contracts/Force Majeure

Brooks Pierce attorney Jim Phillips

Jim Phillips

Brooks Pierce attorney Eric David

Eric David

Business Loan Strategy

Brooks Pierce attorney Sue Young

Sue Young

Compliance with State and Local Regulations

Brooks Pierce attorney Alex Elkan

Alex Elkan


Brooks Pierce attorney Arty Bolick

Arty Bolick


Brooks Pierce attorney Kearns Davis

Kearns Davis

Crisis Management & Crisis Communications

Brooks Pierce attorney Ed West

Ed West

Data Privacy

Brooks Pierce attorney Will Quick

Will Quick


Brooks Pierce attorney Jill Wilson

Jill Wilson

Employee Benefits/Retirement Plan Issues

Brooks Pierce attorney Melissa Weaver

Melissa Weaver

Employment & Labor

Brooks Pierce attorney Natalie Sanders

Natalie Sanders

Government Relations/Lobbying

Brooks Pierce Attorney Ed Turlington

Ed Turlington


Brooks Pierce attorney Forrest Campbell

Forrest Campbell

Hospitality Industry

Brooks Pierce attorney Tony Barwick

Tony Barwick

Insurance Issues

Brooks Pierce attorney Gary Parsons

Gary Parsons

Intellectual Property

Brooks Pierce attorney David Sar

David Sar


Brooks Pierce attorney Charles Baldwin

Charles Baldwin


Brooks Pierce attorney Tim Nelson

Tim Nelson


Real Estate

Brooks Pierce attorney Camden Betz

Camden Betz

Tax Issues

Brooks Pierce attorney Mark Davidson

Mark Davidson

Brooks Pierce attorney Adam Tarleton

Adam Tarleton

Brooks Pierce attorney Sara Vizithum

Sara Vizithum


In the Media

Business North Carolina - One on One Series: Cybersecurity

Business North Carolina - Families First Coronavirus Response Act: What Employers Need to Know

Business Insider - Legal risks for businesses are changing every day. Here’s how you could be vulnerable over paid leave, cleaning supplies, and your work-from-home policy

Triangle Business Journal - Lawyers: What employers should know about testing for coronavirus

Triad Business Journal - Lawyers offer advice on how employers, workers can comply with back-to-work guidelines 

Jessi Thaller-Moran discussed returning employees to work in a COVID-19 world in WRAL's morning news segment on May 8, 2020

Triad Business Journal - What you need to know about which businesses are essential and which aren't

Triangle Business Journal - What employment lawyers in NC are telling their clients about the coronavirus

Business North Carolina - Stimulus bill adds pressure on some small businesses, lawyer says 

Natalie Sanders answers employment law questions regarding coronavirus in the Triad Business Journal

News & Observer – NC coronavirus Q&A: How does COVID-19 affect employers and workplaces?


For Your Information

Paycheck Protection Program documents:

NC Restaurant & Lodging Association - COVID-19 FAQ for Restaurants & Hotels

FDIC Statement on Financial Institutions Working with Customers Affected by the Coronavirus and Regulatory and Supervisory Assistance

FDIC Financial Institution Letter – Regulatory Relief: Working with Customers Affected by the Coronavirus

Small Business Administration Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program