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  • Writer's pictureJoel Murray

Navigating Business and Legal Challenges Arising During the COVID-19 Pandemic and Its Aftermath

Updated: Mar 29, 2020

COVID-19 (a/k/a “Coronavirus” or “Novel Coronavirus”) is quickly becoming a worldwide crisis (if it has not already reached this status) that will likely have an impact along the lines of the 2008 Financial Crisis, 9/11, the Cold War, World War II, and probably the most tangentially related if not parallel, the 1918 Influenza Pandemic.

For business owners, particularly of small businesses, the impact of COVID-19 has been severe. In hospitality, countless workers have been furloughed or laid off. In technology, workers “remote in” to the office. Other sectors have adopted similar measures. Meanwhile, workers whose roles are “essential” continue to go to work everyday in order to allow society to continue to function despite exposing themselves to the risk of contracting COVID-19.

Society continues to operate, albeit in a reduced form. At this point, it seems almost certain that there will be negative economic performance (a/k/a “recession”) due to what may eventually be known as the 2020 COVID-19 Pandemic or something similar. With this will come bankruptcies and the collapse of many businesses. This will inevitably include privately held businesses that were invested in by third parties who did so passively.

The 2008 Financial Crisis led to a similar collapse of many businesses. While many of these businesses operated in an honest and ethical manner, at least some did not, and even engaged in practices typically considered to be fraudulent and/or typical of a “Ponzi Scheme”. When most people think of the latter, they think of Bernard Madoff and the collapse of Madoff Investment Securities, and a few other notable and well publicized examples. Nonetheless, for all of these collapses and the well publicized prosecutions and civil litigation resulting therefrom, there were many more similar ones that did not receive nearly as much public attention even though losses totalled in the millions of dollars and former corporate officers were convicted on charges arising from fraudulent business practices.

If you are an investor in a privately held company, and starting to see diminishing returns, and/or even the collapse of your investment, at minimum, it is worth reviewing in detail the company's financial statements and/or explanations for reduced returns. In the event that this review raises questions about the legitimacy of the investment and/or company and its operations, investors should contact an attorney and/or forensic accountant.

JFM Law is ready to assist you and/or your business navigate the uncertainty brought about by the 2020 COVID-19 Pandemic as well as what will likely be significant effects in its aftermath. JFM Law founder Joel Murray has a wide range of experience in dealing with adverse situations that arise in business involving private companies and/or government agencies.

While the 2020 COVID-19 Pandemic continues, , JFM Law is offering free 30 minute consultations via Skype, Zoom, FaceTime, or telephone to discuss any concerns that you may have about operating your business, investment(s), and/or other similar legal issues related to business and financial endeavors. Please feel free to email or inquire with JFM Law today at or (425) 429-4802.

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