Mass Restaurant Assc. COVID-19 Update March 22, 2020

March 22, 2020
Massachusetts Restaurant Association
There are currently no updates from Massachusetts or the Federal Government.
Expect action this week on a variety of measures, including:
  • An advisory from the Division of Insurance regarding payment flexibility across all lines of insurance
  • An update on the Federal Government's efforts around "Phase 3" of the Coronavirus legislation to help expedite the small business recovery; the inclusion of QIP in any legislative efforts.
  • Outstanding questions on the National Paid Leave Act and clarification from the Department of Labor who is charged with writing regulations to implement the law.
  • The potential for Federal legislation mandating business interruption insurance policies cover COVID claims, with the Federal Government re-insuring the claims.
Today, Governor Baker tried to put the increased numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts into a larger context, stressing that the higher figures are in part a result of increased testing in Massachusetts. "The reason that number is going to climb is because we're testing more," Baker said. "That's not necessarily a bad thing. And by the way, people are recovering at the same time that new people are coming on."
Online Webinar
Restaurant Industry Discussion on Legal & Business Issues Related to COVID-19 Outbreak
Date: Monday, March 23 2020
Time: 12:00 - 1:00 PM
With the recent COVID-19 restrictions put in place for restaurants and bars, there are many questions surrounding the lease, financing, employment, and insurance aspects of your restaurants for all of us to discuss. The webinar will be a discussion of topics including:
  • Steps to approaching lease issues
  • Employee issues
  • Financing and investor issues
  • Insurance alternatives
  • Industry responses and best strategies
Co-Hosted By: Lou Katz, Esq. & Kelly Caralis, Esq.
Including Panelists: Bob Luz, President & Chief Executive Officer at the Massachusetts Restaurant Association, Kevin Racine, Sr. Vice President, Commercial Insurance at USI Insurance Services, and Dave Robinson, Esq. at RIW
Please email your questions in advance to Kelly Caralis at with the subject "Attn: Seminar Questions" . Webinar presented by the RIW Hospitality & Retail Services Group.
Unemployment Insurance - update from the department
To help with the increased demand on the unemployment system, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development and the Department of Unemployment Assistance will be hosting virtual town hall meetings. We will take all who sign up through a step by step process of achieving a successful unemployment claim. We will also be taking questions from claimants across the Commonwealth. Applicants should file for benefits at .
Virtual town halls: . A Spanish language town hall will be held on Tuesday at 9am and additional language town halls shortly thereafter. 
To further help claimants through the process of applying for benefits, we have made specific web page updates that include the latest guidance for employee qualifications and additional resources like contact forms and a COVID-19 specific unemployment claim handbook that can be viewed at .