During these unprecedented, challenging times with the Coronavirus pandemic continuing to affect our personal and business lives, we want to convey our prayers and good wishes for your health and well-being.
Since the New Year, we have been among the minority of Manhattan-based businesses to physically return to the office in mid-town. We have unwavering faith in New York City and have doubled down on New York City by expanding our office presence. We are excited to announce that our firm recently moved to a new office at One Grand Central Place, which is conveniently located across from Grand Central Station.
The corporate commercial real estate market has finally started to rebound from the height of the Coronavirus pandemic when office occupancy plummeted to a record low, 10%. One year later, in mid-town East, where our office is located, corporate real estate occupancy has improved to 20% and is expected to reach 33% occupancy in the beginning of the summer. Nonetheless, it is still a surreal streetscape in midtown Manhattan.
There are signs of improvement on the horizon as major financial institutions and the New York City government have recalled employees to start in-office work in May. We have also seen an uptick in deals for commercial leases in Manhattan.
As we approach the end of the first quarter of 2021, the Coronavirus pandemic is still impacting the courts and legal industry. Most federal and state court appearances are still being held virtually, either by video monitoring or teleconference. The trial calendars in federal and state court are extremely backlogged because of the disruption caused by the Coronavirus pandemic. While the Federal Courts have recently physically re-opened for limited appearances, with strict Coronavirus protocols, such as double masking, most appearances are still remote. It is not clear when the courts will-re-open for business as usual.
Given the challenges over the first quarter, we are especially pleased to share with you some highlights for Levin-Epstein & Associates, P.C.
The firm’s litigation achievements include:
- Judgment Enforcement. The firm obtained dismissal of two fraudulent conveyance actions in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, which were filed in connection with an underlying Fair Labor Standards Act case. The Honorable Senior District Block’s decision called our arguments “persuasive” in the dismissal of the two separate fraudulent conveyance complaints.
- Employee-Side Fair Labor Standards Act Cases. The firm favorably settled several FLSA actions on the employee-side in the Southern District of New York and the Eastern District of New York.
- Business Divorce. The firm favorably settled a business divorce on behalf of a 50/50 owner of a construction company.
- Management-Side Fair Labor Standards Act Case. The firm favorably settled several FLSA actions on the employer-side.
The firm’s corporate achievements include:
- Severance and Termination Negotiations. The firm assisted several executive clients with negotiating severance agreements and exit packages.
- Commercial Lease Terminations. The firm assisted clients with invoking early termination rights under commercial leases.
- PPP and Cares Act Legislation. The firm assisted clients with navigating the Congress’ legislative regulatory and stimulus efforts.
- Pro Bono Work. The firm assisted several pro bono clients with reviewing lease provision, bankruptcy considerations, and PPP and Cares Act legislation.
We want to thank you for contributing to our continued success. Please do not hesitate to reach out if we can provide counsel and strategic planning in any of the following practice areas:
- Business (and sometimes personal) considerations that defy easy categorization, requiring a deep understanding of pertinent legal issues that must be taken into account to reach a favorable outcome
- Litigation avoidance: negotiating agreements to resolve disputes before they cross the threshold of the courthouse
- Litigation before trial, appellate courts, or administrative bodies: matters involving real estate, partnership disputes, and creditors' rights
- Bankruptcy litigation and creditors' rights work: avoidance actions, preference actions, discharge and dischargeability actions
- Business divorce litigation: contested stock valuations, derivative actions, and any disputes between owners of closely held business corporations
- Employment litigation: employment law, restrictive covenants, trade secrets, wage-and-hour issues, Fair Labor Standards Act issues, and breach of contract issues
- Legal representation for investors, restauranteurs, restaurant management companies, and chefs in New York City's hospitality sector.
- Domestic and international arbitration and mediations