Benefits and executive compensation partner Philip Gutwein was quoted in Law360's report on four key lawsuits involving COVID-19 and benefits law.
In the article "4 COVID-19 Benefits Cases To Watch In 2020's Home Stretch," Law360 noted that benefits attorneys are focused on suits over coronavirus leave, paid sick time, benefit plan participation requirements and notices to laid-off workers in 2020's final months. Gutwein shared insight on litigation trends that could arise or worsen because of the pandemic.
"If the circumstances are dire enough, and the plaintiffs are affected adversely, you may get a lawsuit, because the impact is so severe," Gutwein said. "With respect to health insurance coverage, with lots of people who lose coverage, you can expect a lot of suits over whether the circumstances were appropriate that led to their loss of eligibility."
Gutwein also commented on the possibility of more cases involving violations of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which required companies with fewer than 500 employees to make two weeks of paid leave available to workers affected by the pandemic.
"The FFCRA got rolled out in a hurry, and employers were under an obligation to respond to it in a hurry, so you can imagine some did a good job with it and some didn't," Gutwein said. "If these employees are now finding themselves in dire situations, they may feel like suing is their only hope."