Overview: On September 9, 2021, the Biden Administration issued a variety of measures designed to promote COVID-19 safeguards and decrease the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Such measures included two Executive Orders and President Biden’s COVID-19 Action Plan, all three of which greatly impact employers of varying sizes and industries. The Plan and each Executive Order are discussed in more detail below.
On July 6, 2021, the Department of State (DOS) issued guidance stating that national interest exceptions (NIEs) issued in the last 12 months are being automatically extended for 12 months from the date of approval, and for multiple entries, as long as they are used for the purpose under which they were granted. The extension applies to NIEs for travelers subject to Presidential Proclamations 9984 (China), 9992 (Iran), 10143 (Schengen Area, U.K., Ireland, Brazil, and South Africa), and 10199 (India). The official guidance from DOS can be found here. More information on the Geographic COVID-19 Related Travel Bans can be found here.
- As States Begin to Ease COVID-19 Restrictions, How Are Businesses Faring in Business Interruption Coverage Disputes?04.2021
When state and local governments began issuing shutdown and stay-at-home orders a little over a year ago, it was difficult to fathom how long businesses would be struggling to operate within the boundaries of the unprecedented restrictions. The economy has been hit hard across the board, with the U.S. travel and hospitality industry suffering an estimated $1.1 trillion in direct and indirect losses in 2020, hospitals and healthcare systems losing at least $323 billion in 2020, the NCAA and the four major U.S. sports leagues losing at least $14.1 billion, many major retailers declaring bankruptcy, and millions of small businesses expecting to fold in 2021 under the pressure of sustained business losses.
Extension of Presidential Proclamations 10014 and 10052
On December 31, 2020, President Trump signed a Presidential Proclamation on Suspension of Entry of Immigrants and Nonimmigrants Who Continue to Present a Risk to the United States Labor Market. This proclamation extends Presidential Proclamations (P.P.) 10014 and 10052 through March 31, 2021.
On December 2, 2020, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”) held a Special Open Door Forum to discuss a new final rule amending the regulations that interpret the federal physician self-referral law (the “Stark Law”).
On December 4, 2020, separate lawsuits filed in federal courts in Maryland and California allege that the new Medicare drug-pricing regulation released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on November 20, 2020, known as the Most Favored Nation Rule (MFN Rule), violates federal law, including the United States Constitution.