Dear Clients, Colleagues, and Friends:
During these unprecedented and challenging times as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic affecting our personal and business lives, we want to convey our prayers and good wishes for your health and well-being.
Since the pandemic, we have been advising clients and pro bono clients on the CARES ACT and Payroll Protection Program as the Small Business Administration and the Department of the Treasury were issuing critical rules following Congress enactment of the legislation. For many of our New York City based clients, Congress’ relief efforts were underwhelming because the legislative intent of the Cares Act incentivized the reinstatement of employees back onto employers’ payrolls, which did not properly consider that rent – not payroll – accounts for small and medium-sized Manhattan-based employers’ largest expense. Sadly, we have seen clients and pro bono clients’ close businesses that were successful before the pandemic because of liquidity concerns that provided short financial runways to break commercial leases without the incurrence of personal liability. There are some recent indications that better business days are ahead, however.
Recently, the New York State Courts started to accept the filing of new lawsuits, with certain notable exceptions for residential and commercial evictions. Federal Courts in Manhattan and Brooklyn have started to take a wait-and-see approach about whether conferences scheduled for the month of August will be conducted telephonically or in-person. These are small indications that the New York courts are returning to normalcy.
Given the challenges over the last few months, we are especially pleased to share with you some highlights for Levin-Epstein & Associates, P.C. in the second quarter of 2020.
The firm’s Litigation achievements include:
- Judgment Enforcement. The firm obtained a favorable decision in the Commercial Division of the Supreme Court of New York against a judgment debtor seeking the dismissal of a judgment enforcement lawsuit.
- Employee-Side Fair Labor Standards Act Case. The firm favorably settled an FLSA actions on the employee-side.
- Management-Side Fair Labor Standards Act Case. The firm favorable settled an FLSA action on the employer-side for nuisance value.
- Settlement for Independent Contractor in the Commercial Division. The firm obtained a favorable six figure settlement for an independent contractor.
- Settlement for Independent Contractor Pre-Suit. The firm obtained a favorable settlement for an independent contractor before the commencement of a lawsuit.
- Settlement for Sub-Contractor Construction Firm. The firm obtained a favorable settlement for a construction company arising out non-payment on well known New York City project.
The firm’s Corporate achievements include:
- Severance and Termination Negotiations. The firm assisted several executive clients with negotiating severance agreements and exit packages.
- 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 client with reviewing lease provision, bankruptcy considerations, and PPP and Cares Act legislation.
We hope that you continue to refer clients to us and continue to be part of our success. You know us, you know our experience, and you know the quality of our work. We would be most grateful to be retained in these areas, among others:
- litigation before trial or appellate courts or administrative bodies, especially matters involving real estate, partnership disputes, and creditors' rights;
- litigation avoidance - the crucial effort to negotiate agreements to resolve disputes before they cross the threshold of the courthouse;
- domestic and international arbitration and mediations;
- bankruptcy litigation and creditors' rights work, including avoidance actions, preference actions, discharge and dischargeability actions;
- employment litigation in all aspects of employment law, including issues involving restrictive covenants and trade secrets, wage-and-hour issues, Fair Labor Standards Act issues, and breach of contract issues;
- business divorce litigation, including contested stock valuations, derivative actions and other disputes between owners of closely held business corporations; and
- counseling and strategic planning that defy easy categorization, requiring a deep understanding of the pertinent legal issues and also of the business (and sometimes personal) considerations that must be taken into account to reach a favorable outcome.
Stay safe and be well.
Josh Epstein and Jason Mizrahi