COVID-19 Developments and Legal Updates
The Government of PEI’s COVID-19 business adaptation advice program
The current COVID-19 outbreak presents considerable challenges for all businesses, large and small alike. In recognition of these challenges, the Government of PEI has developed the COVID-19 Business Adaptation Program (the “Program”). The program applies to all PEI businesses who have been impacted by the effects of COVID-19, and functions by providing a non-repayable contribution towards the cost to hire a professional to provide advice and support to businesses needing to adapt or with measures that will have to be undertaken to recover from the impacts of COVID-19. This program allows for a 100% cost contribution (to a maximum of $2500.00) to cover fees incurred to engage a professional, and applies equally to businesses, entrepreneurs, not-for-profit and non-governmental organizations.
How do I apply?
The portal to apply for this program can be accessed here. Note that an application must be submitted and approved before any financial or legal commitment is made by the Government of PEI. Applications should clearly identify the challenge the business is looking find a solution for.
What supports do we provide which are covered by the Program?
Practice innovation investments we have made have allowed us to continue to provide services “as usual” and to assist our clients with some of the unexpected challenges they are now facing. We are trying to stay one step ahead so we can assist our clients during these unprecedented times. While the impact of COVID-19 will vary by industry, proactively seeking sound advice from one of our trusted professionals can substantially lessen the blow both in the present and for years to come. As businesses grapple with the practical implications of the COVID-19 outbreak, we have outlined below a summary of some of the different areas where we believe proactive steps undertaken with the guidance of one of our experienced lawyers may greatly mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak and set our clients up for optimal success down the road.
Regardless of the steps an organization takes to limit any COVID-19-induced disruptions to the resources central to its operation, a business may not be able to satisfy its contractual obligations. All existing and potential contracts should be reviewed and appropriate action taken. Our lawyers can assist you in responding effectively as the situation evolves.
The current financial climate can pose challenges for organizations now facing rapid economic change. Stewart McKelvey lawyers have extensive experience acting on behalf of both lenders and borrowers. We can help ensure that your organization’s financing is structured to minimize burdens while ensuring all relevant requirements are met.
Our lawyers have experience in all aspects of corporate law, including corporate restructuring and corporate governance matters. Whether the engagement involves the development of a new corporate structure or a corporate re-organization, our lawyers can assist.
Bankruptcy and insolvency
Our lawyers have significant experience providing specialized, legal assistance to a range of stakeholders involved in bankruptcy and insolvency matters. Our team takes a creative and strategic approach to helping our clients navigate to a conclusion that maximizes value, from preparing financial agreements to providing counsel to clients seeking to reorganize or liquidate.
Human resources and employment advice
The human resources and employment issues the COVID-19 outbreak poses are broad and far reaching. We encourage employers to seek legal advice from one of our labour and employment lawyers with respect to the particular issue(s) facing your business.
Landlord and tenant matters
Whether you are a landlord or a tenant, our real property group can provide direction in relation to tenancy relationships during this time of great uncertainty. We encourage you to seek legal advice from one of our lawyers with respect to the particular issue(s) you might be facing, as it relates to landlord and tenant matters.
Access to government programs
The provincial and federal governments are working in tandem to provide support to businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, including trying to assist with managing the economic stress related with it. Both governments have been rolling out updates on a daily basis. As every businesses’ circumstances are unique, we see it as our job to keep you informed every step of the way, so you are aware of what implications these supports have to your specific business.
The COVID-19 outbreak is creating additional hazards for your business and now is the time to take pro-active steps to ensure proper compliance with public health orders and advisories, protect employees, suppliers and customers, and assess risks to your business. We encourage you to speak with our lawyers to review what new potential legal exposure there may be for your business operations. Our lawyers have considerable experience advising on insurance coverage and can provide you with advice on whether your current policies will provide coverage for ever evolving risks.
This update is intended for general information only. If you have questions about the above, please contact any of our lawyers located in our Charlottetown office.
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