Date: 05/11/2021
Time: 1 pm eastern
Run Time: 90 minutes including Q & A session
Leader: Dr. Jim Castagnera, Attorney at Law
Credits: Awarded 1.5 credit hours by HRCI and 1.5 PDCs by SHRM
Price: Webinar $295; Webinar + Download $349 (Share the download with your colleagues)
Audience: HR, benefits, finance, managers and supervisors, IT, CEOs, in-house counsel, etc.

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

The fight to end the pandemic has begun to show progress as more people are vaccinated.   At the same time health officials are becoming increasingly concerned about a possible new surge in COVID-19 cases during the warmer months, as travel mushrooms and COVID variants gain traction.  Out of necessity, employers are making decisions about which of their employees will be allowed to continue to work remotely and who will be returning to the workplace over the next several months.  Organizations are aware of the risks associated with moving too quickly to bring their employees back and exposing their businesses to lawsuits caused from the transmission of the virus.  To provide beleaguered businesses with legal shelter, more than half of the states have already taken action to mitigate the potential liability risks by enacting liability immunity laws.

Just what these protections are, however, differs from state to state, while in no state do they represent a 100 percent liability shield.  Significant differences exist among the states. Single state and multi-state employers need to understand the extent of the liability immunity provided by the jurisdictions where they do business and employ workers. Of equal import, they need to recognize and allow for the exceptions and the gaps.  Organizations must have the policies and procedures in place which demonstrate their compliance with relevant federal and state laws and regulations to derive the maximum protection provided by the liability shields which have been enacted in their state(s).  Please join Dr. Jim Castagnera, attorney at law, as he describes the state Covid-19 employer-liability protections, which have been enacted across the nation and explains the key differences and similarities between and among them ‒ all designed to help employers reduce the risks and potential liability associated with a Covid-19 lawsuit brought by a current or former employee.

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

During this informative webinar Dr. Castagnera will discuss:

  • Individual state statutes and executive actions which have been enacted across the nation to mitigate the exposure of employers to Covid-19 employee lawsuits
  • Similarities and differences between and among the states
  • Types of businesses that may or may not have gotten immunity
  • Limitations on liability protections–no state provides 100 percent liability protection
  • Whistleblower exceptions
  • States with greater levels of employer liability protection and states which provide less liability immunity
  • Employers in states where liability shields have not been enacted or where liability protections are more limited in scope
  • Need to remain compliant with current state and federal safety standards including recent new federal OSHA guidance which pre-empts state requirements
  • Guidance for establishing a COVID-19 compliance program in your business which includes a formal mitigation plan and policy
  • The value of having employees sign Covid-19 waivers
  • Federal role, if any, in mitigating employer Covid-19 liability risks

PROGRAM LEADER

Jim Castagnera holds an M.A. in journalism from Kent State University, and a J.D. and Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University. He worked 10 years as a labor, employment, and intellectual-property attorney with Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr and 23 years as associate provost & legal counsel for academic affairs at Rider University, where in 2018 he received the university’s highest annual award for distinguished service.  He also did stints as a full-time law professor at University of Texas-Austin and Widener University Law School.

Having retired from Rider in 2019, he is engaged in a portfolio of activities:  member and chief consultant of Holland Media Services LLC, a communications and training company with offices in Philadelphia and Los Angeles; member of Portum Group International LLC, a cyber security & privacy consulting firm in Philadelphia; of counsel to Washington International Business Counsel; and adjunct professor of Law in the Kline School of Law at Drexel University.