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New York Covid-19 Updates

By Jennifer L. Alexander, Esq. March 20, 2020 Posted in Firm News

In response to Covid-19, as of March 20, 2020, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that he will be signing an executive order which will state that all workers in non-essential businesses must stay home. Cuomo stated that “only essential businesses can have workers commuting to the job or on the job.” All non-essential gatherings of any size are cancelled or postponed. These new rules are to go into effect on Sunday, March 22, 2020. Essential businesses include grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations, and banks. The Governor noted today that this is a legal order and will be enforced.  Businesses not in compliance are subject to civil fines and mandatory closure.

Also, on March 20, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a 90-day moratorium on evictions for residential and commercial tenants, meaning no one can be evicted in New York State until at least June 20th. This announcement further strengthens the moratorium already in place through the court system.

With regard to the courts and landlord/tenant matters, as of March 17, 2020, New York City Civil Court, including Housing Court, is only hearing emergency applications on cases, but all other matters, including appearances in all regular civil and housing part calendars are administratively adjourned for approximately 45 days. There will be no evictions in New York from March 16, 2020 and until further notice, which now will be for at least 90 days. Any scheduled cases are to be adjourned and new court dates will be mailed out. However, for the time being, the Court is still accepting new cases for filing.

Further, the Administrative Order of the Chief Administrative Judge of the Courts has stated that the prosecution of pending civil matters that require in-person appearances or travel are strongly discouraged.

The State Senate and Assembly in New York passed a bill on March 18, 2020 that will expand paid sick leave to all public and private sector workers forced into precautionary or mandatory quarantine due to the coronavirus. For employers with eleven to ninety-nine workers, employees forced into quarantine shall be provided with at least five days of sick paid leave and unpaid leave until the termination of any mandatory or precautionary order of quarantine. After five days of paid sick leave, an employee is eligible for paid family leave benefits. Employers with one hundred employees or more are to provide their employees with at least fourteen days of paid sick leave during any mandatory quarantine or self-isolation order.

As the situation is fluid and changing on a daily basis, we will continue to monitor for any updates, new orders or legislation. Please feel free to contact our firm with any questions.

The information in this Client Alert is provided solely for information purposes. It should not be construed as legal advice on any specific matter and is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based upon particular circumstances.  Each legal matter is unique, and prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.


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