Combined Federal, VA and NC Government Resources for COVID-19

Williams Mullen

Updated: April 3, 2020
COVID-19 Key Resource List (Virginia):

Commonwealth of Virginia Official COVID-19 Website

This website is a comprehensive resource that provides information pertaining to official actions, guidance, updates, and information about novel coronavirus.

Updates from the Governor

Governor Northam is holding Facebook Live briefings at 2pm on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays to provide an update to the public on the actions his administration is taking to combat and contain the spread of COVID-19 in Virginia and to support Virginians during this very difficult time.

Williams Mullen COVID-19 Legal Updates

Williams Mullen attorneys continue to serve our clients and have helped by assembling a legal resource page with alerts on federal and state actions related to COVID-19. An email sign-up is available so you can have legal alerts and updates sent as soon as they are published.

Recent Updates

  • The new Executive Order 55 (EO 55) issued Monday, March 30th further reinforces Governor Northam’s COVID-19 response in Executive Order 53 (EO 53), which was issued on Monday, March 23rd. EO 55 prohibits additional social and recreational activities, closes in-person instruction at institutions of higher education, closes private campgrounds, and institutes a ‘stay at home’ order requiring all Virginians to stay at home except for travel to essential work places, obtaining food, medical care, caring for others or animals, child visitation, outdoor exercise, volunteering, or an educational institution. EO 55 does not alter the types of businesses that were deemed essential in EO 53. EO 55 went into effect on Monday, March 30th and remains in effect until Wednesday, June 10th, unless rescinded or amended by a future Executive Order.
  • Governor Northam issued Executive Order 54 on Saturday, March 28th to delegate to the Virginia Employment Commission the authority and responsibility for executing agreements with the United States Department of Labor related to implementation of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) and requesting Title XII advances from the Federal Unemployment Account. The purpose of the order is to accelerate and streamline access to federal relief for Virginians who are out of work.
  • Here is a link to all of the Governor’s Executive Orders and Directives.

COVID-19 Additional Resources (Virginia):

Department of Taxation: www.tax.virginia.gov

  • Businesses impacted by COVID-19 can request to defer the payment of state sales tax due for 30 days.
  • When granted, businesses will be able to file no later than April 20, 2020 with a waiver of any penalties. 
  • The Virginia Department of Taxation is extending the due date of payment of Virginia individuals and corporate income taxes. While the filing deadlines remain the same, the due date for individual and corporate income tax will now be June 1, 2020.
  • Please note that interest will still accrue.
     

Department of Health: www.vdh.virginia.gov

  • Symptoms of COVID-19 information.
  • Share the Facts about COVID-19 resource.
  • What to do if your sick resource.
  • What to do if you have had contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19.
  • A daily update of the number of the number of Virginians tested, the number of confirmed cases, hospitalizations and deaths.
     

Department of Medical Assistance Services (Medicaid): www.dmas.virginia.gov

  • Eliminating all co-payments for services covered by Medicaid and Family Access to Medical Insurance Security (FAMIS), including COVID-19-related treatment as well as other medical care.
  • Ensuring current Medicaid members do not inadvertently lose coverage due to lapses in paperwork or a change in circumstances.
  • Permitting Medicaid members to obtain a 90-day supply of many routine prescriptions, an increase from the 30-day supply under previous rules.
  • Waiving pre-approval requirements for many critical medical services and enacting automatic extensions for approvals that are already in place.
  • Expanding access to telehealth services, including allowing Medicaid reimbursement for providers who use telehealth with patients in the home.
     

 Department of Motor Vehicleswww.dmv.virginia.gov

  • Virginia’s 75 DMV offices, as well as mobile units are closed to the public.
  • Online services will remain available, and anyone needing to renew a license or vehicle registration is encouraged to do so online.
  • For those who cannot renew online, or whose license or registration expires before May 15, DMV will grant a 60-day extension.
  • Virginia Department of State Police to suspend the enforcement of Motor Vehicle Safety Inspections for 60 days.
     

Virginia’s Judicial System: http://www.courts.state.va.us/

  • From Monday, March 16 through Sunday, April 26, non-essential, non-emergency court proceedings in all district and circuit courts are suspended absent a specific exemption, by order of the Virginia Supreme Court. The clerk's office will still be open.
     

Virginia Employment Commission http://www.vec.virginia.gov/

  • Governor Northam has directed the Commissioner of the Virginia Employment Commission to waive the one-week waiting period for benefit payments.
  • Workers may be eligible to receive unemployment benefits if their employer needs to temporarily slow or cease operations due to COVID-19. If a worker has been issued a notice to self-quarantine by a medical or public health official and is not receiving paid sick or medical leave from their employer, they may be eligible to receive unemployment benefits. In addition, a worker may be eligible for unemployment benefits if they must stay home to care for an ill family member and are not receiving paid family medical leave from their employer.
  • Virginia Employment Commission will give affected workers special consideration on deadlines, mandatory re-employment appointments, and work search requirements.


COVID-19 KEY RESOURCE LIST (North Carolina):

North Carolina Official COVID-19 Website

This website is a comprehensive resource of North Carolina’s response to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Williams Mullen COVID-19 Legal Updates

Williams Mullen attorneys continue to serve our clients and have helped by assembling a legal resource page with alerts on federal and state actions related to COVID-19. An email sign-up is available so you can have legal alerts and updates sent as soon as they are published.

Recent Updates:

On Friday, March 27th, Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order 121, a statewide stay at home order effective for 30 days beginning at 5pm on Monday, March 30th. The order bans gatherings of more than ten individuals, however airports, bus and train stations, libraries, medical facilities, shopping venues and “Essential Businesses” are exempt but are required to follow social distancing requirements to the extent practicable.

The order also requires all North Carolinians to remain in their homes except for “Essential Activities,” “Essential Governmental Operations” or to work or shop at “Essential Businesses and Operations.” In general, “Essential Activities” include the following:

  • Tasks essential to health and safety, such as visiting a health care professional or veterinarian.
  • Accessing necessary services or supplies or delivering them to others.
  • Outdoor activity that is compliant with social distancing requirements and not in violation of the mass gathering ban.
  • To care for or assist others.
  • Travel to a place of worship.
  • Child custody or visitation arrangements.
  • Volunteering at organizations that provide charitable and social services.
     

It must be noted that Section 3 of Executive Order 120 is still in effect and generally bans visitors at health care facilities, except for health care personnel and during end-of-life situations. This includes long-term care facilities, nursing homes, mental health and disability group homes.

“Essential Governmental Operations” includes state and local services needed to ensure the continued operation of government or provide for or support the health, safety and welfare of the public. Each government body determines the operations that fall into this category, but first responders, emergency management personnel, court system personnel, and child welfare staff are included. As an aside, Section 2 of Executive Order 120 expressly provides that certain local government offices shall continue to operate, including health departments, registrar of deeds offices and department of social services offices.   

The definition of “Essential Businesses and Operations” is broad and includes several business and industry sectors. Among other business operations, the following are included:

  • Businesses, non-profits and educational institutions operating in the federal critical infrastructure sectors identified by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (https://www.cisa.gov/identifying-critical-infrastructure-during-covid-19).
  • Healthcare and public health operations.
  • Human service operations, including childcare facilities, long-term care facilities, adoption agencies, and entitles that provide food, shelter, social services and transportation to the needy.
  • Businesses involved in infrastructure, such as construction, telecommunications and other utilities, transportation and supply chain.
  • Stores that sell groceries and medicine.
  • Religious entities.
  • Gas stations, auto repair and auto supply businesses.
  • Professional services, including legal, accounting, insurance, engineering and architecture.
  • Manufacturing.
  • Hotels and motels.
  • Financial institutions.
  • Home improvement stores.
  • Businesses, non-profits and educational institutions that adhere to the social distancing requirements.
     

Section 1(a) and 1(b) of Executive Order 120 remain in effect, and these provisions prohibit the following businesses from operating: Bingo parlors, bowling alleys, ice skating rinks, indoor exercise facilities (gyms, studios, etc.), health clubs, indoor pools, live performance venues, movie theaters, roller skating rinks, spas, sweepstakes lounges, video game arcades, barber shops, beauty salons, hair salons, nail salons, massage parlors, and tattoo shops.

No documentation authenticating an exemption to the stay at home order is required. In the areas where a local order is also in place, Governor Cooper has instructed that the more restrictive provisions of the state and local orders would apply.

For more information on Executive Order 121, the Governor’s Office has created a guidance document, which can be found here. A link to all of the Governor’s Executive Orders can be found here.

Pursuant to Section 4 of Executive Order 120, public schools in the state will remain closed until at least May 15th.

The General Assembly is scheduled to convene its 2020 session on April 28th. There is a possibility that a special session could be called before that to consider COVID-19 relief measures. The Speaker of the House has appointed a House Select Committee on COVID-19 to review current developments and assist in the preparation of legislative proposals. The Committee includes four separate work groups (Health Care, Education, Economic Support and Continuity of State Operations), which began meeting Wednesday, March 25th. More information on the Committee can be found here.

Municipal and County Restrictions:

Several local governments across North Carolina have implemented their own restrictions. Below is a list of 20 communities who have passed such restrictions, and a link to the local order. More communities are expected to pass similar measures in the coming weeks. 

Buncombe County Order

Cabarrus County Order

City of Greenville Order

City of Winston-Salem Order

Dare County Order

Durham Order

Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Order

Forsyth County Order

Gaston County Order

Guilford County Order

Haywood County Order

Madison County Order

Mecklenburg County Order

New Hanover County Order

Orange County Order

Pitt County Order

Rutherford County Order

Town of Beaufort Order

Village of Clemmons Order

Wake County Order

COVID-19 Additional Resources (North Carolina):

NC Department of Revenue (DOR): https://www.ncdor.gov/

  • NC DOR extended the April 15th tax filing deadline to July 15th for individual, corporate, and franchise taxes to mirror the deadline change from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
  • NC DOR will not charge penalties to those filing and paying their taxes after April 15th as long as they file and pay their tax before the new July 15th deadline.
  • Taxpayers who pay taxes after April 15th will be responsible for paying interest on these payments at the statutory rate of 5%. However, the Governor and legislative leaders have stated that they support waiving that requirement via legislation.
  • NCDOR encourages taxpayers to use online and free services to pay their taxes this year. Most taxpayers can file online for free here.
     

NC Department of Health and Human Services: https://www.ncdhhs.gov/

  • COVID-19 case count.
  • Numbers to call or text for COVID-19 assistance.
  • COVID-19 symptoms and health tips. 
  • Past COVID-19 briefings. 
  • COVID-19 overview page can be found here.
  • Information on the testing and treatment of COVID-19 can be found here.
     

NC Department of Commerce: https://www.nccommerce.com/

  • North Carolina Employment Security Division is publishing instructions and guidance to help employers and employees understand the new changes to the state’s unemployment systemrelated to COVID-19 here.
  • The changes to the state’s unemployment system were ordered by Governor Cooper on Tuesday, March 17, 2020, in his Executive Order 118.
  • The Department of Commerce recommends the fastest and most efficient way to file for assistance is online here.
     

NC Judicial Branch: https://www.nccourts.gov/

  • Grace period for filing deadlines, so that documents subject to filing deadlines from March 16th to April 17th can be filed before the close of business on April 17, 2020. (this does not apply to appellate courts but does apply to Business Court).
  • Effective March 15th, all superior and district court proceedings are postponed for at least 30 days, with some exceptions.
  • To find local announcements, changes, and administrative orders by county please see the COVID-19 Updates page.
     

NC Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV): https://www.ncdot.gov/dmv

  • Some NC DMV driver license offices closed starting Wednesday, March 18.
  • See if an office is closed here.
  • Find what services can be conducted online here.
     

NC Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services: http://www.ncagr.gov/

  • Information on food safety can be found here.
  • FAQ’s about COVID-19 and agriculture, essential businesses and critical infrastructure, and facility updates can be found here.
     

Department of Insurance https://www.ncdoi.gov/

  • Guidance for insurers regarding coverage and cost sharing requirements related to COVID-19 can be found here.
     

Golden LEAF Foundation - Rapid Recovery Loan Program https://ncrapidrecovery.org/

  • Funding will provide loans to help small businesses suffering economic losses related to Coronavirus (COVID-19).
  • Businesses are eligible for bridge loans of up to $50,000 with six months of no interest and no payments. These loans are intended to support businesses until they are able to secure an SBA loan or other long-term assistance.
  • If not repaid in six months, the loans will automatically convert to a term loan.
  • Applicants must be small businesses affected by COVID-19 and have at least one employee.
  • Nonprofit organizations are not currently eligible.


COVID-19 Additional Resources (Federal):

Department of Homeland Security:

FDIC and Other Bank/Lending Regulators:

  • All federal agencies that regulate all U.S. financial institutions issued a written statement on Sunday, March 22, 2020: https://www.fdic.gov/news/news/financial/2020/fil20022.html
  • In it, these agencies provided the following sweeping guidance to all financial institutions nationwide:
    • The agencies encourage financial institutions to work prudently with borrowers who are or may be unable to meet their contractual payment obligations because of the effects of COVID-19.
    • The agencies view loan modification programs as positive actions that can mitigate adverse effects on borrowers due to COVID-19.
    • The agencies will not criticize institutions for working with borrowers and will not direct supervised institutions to automatically categorize all COVID-19 related loan modifications as troubled debt restructurings (TDRs).
    • Citing bank-related accounting methodology from both GAAP and FASB perspectives, the agencies explain that short-term modifications made on a good faith basis in response to COVID-19 to borrowers who were current prior to any relief will not automatically be characterized as TDRs.  This has the historic impact of freeing up banks to temporarily defer monthly payments or extend maturity dates with the fear of hobbling a banks’ loan portfolio or requiring additional capital reserves with TDR designations. 
    • Note that the agencies provide an example of “short term modifications” as being six-month deferrals. 
    • Note also the agencies suggest that such modifications should be available only to borrowers who are “current” which they defined as “less than 30 days past due” before the implementation of a modification. 
       

US Small Business Administration:

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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