As the global economy continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and a growing percentage of the population become vaccinated, businesses, industries and governments are turning their attention toward how to safely, effectively and legally transition back to “normal.”
Companies should stay vigilant as many of the implications and issues that affected the global community early on in and throughout the pandemic – business continuity and interruption, cancellation policies, customs/import regulations, export controls, federal and state rules and regulations, data protection and privacy, employment, insurance coverage, vendor and supply chain management, regulatory compliance and transportation restrictions – could continue to create challenges.
Corporations are likely to continue to grapple with potential business and operational disruptions, especially as new strains of the virus affect certain populations. In bringing back a workforce that has been in a work-from-home capacity for a year or more, employers will need to thread the needle between jurisdictional mask mandates, employee safety protocols and potential policies around the vaccine. Additionally, businesses should stay attuned to suit limitation provisions and deadlines for filing a business interruption lawsuit as we approach the one-year anniversary of many of the COVID-19 governmental shutdown orders. Companies should also consider reviewing current bribery and corruption policies and procedures. Regulators and government agencies are expected to diligently scrutinize the conduct of companies and senior individuals during the pandemic, which could lead to a marked uptick in investigations and enforcement actions in the coming months.
Multidisciplinary attorneys across the Reed Smith platform, from Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the United States, have advised clients on the issues above or others faced throughout the pandemic and are also prepared to assist in any number of legal needs related to the recovery process. Contact us for more information or access access “need to know” client alerts and information related to the following topics and industries: