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Coronavirus Legal News Briefing — (5.15.20)

Originally published by Amy Starnes.

Editor’s Note: The State Bar of Texas is providing this collection of important links, blog posts, and media stories to keep its members and the public informed of the latest news and resources related to the novel coronavirus outbreak and its impact on the legal community.

Important links

State Bar of Texas Coronavirus Legal Resources Page — Texasbar.com/coronavirus

State Bar of Texas Coronavirus Public Resources Page — Texasbar.com/COVIDHelp

Texas Lawyers’ Assistance Program Well-being Resources page — Texasbar.com/remote-well-being

Companies fear coronavirus liability lawsuits. So far, few exist — Court records show few such cases have been filed and some legal experts say the threat of liability is exaggerated because of the difficulty of proving where someone was infected. — Reuters

Analysis: The path to emergency powers in Texas might run through the courts — State and local governments are at odds over what should and should not be allowed during a pandemic — a debate over health, economics and civil liberties. The old sparring partners have increasingly appealed to a referee: the courts. — The Texas Tribune

Texas lawsuit against nursing home over worker’s COVID-19 death could point to trend in litigation — Plaintiffs attorneys across the country are gearing up to sue over injuries and deaths from COVID-19 exposure. They’ve already targeted cruise ships, a meat-processing plant and elderly care facilities. (Subscription required) — Texas Lawyer

75% of associates surveyed say job security and pay cuts are top worry; who got hit this week? — As reports build of pay cuts, furloughs and layoffs at law firms, it’s understandable that associates are concerned. — ABA Journal

Nurse-attorneys? Yes. Lawyers are donning scrubs again to help battle COVID-19 — Colleen Carboy, a Lewisville solo practitioner and nurse, has paused her law practice to return to nursing in a COVID-19 hospital unit in New Jersey. She’s not the only nurse-attorney to do this. (Subscription required) — Texas Lawyer

Texas appeals court allows expansion of voting by mail during ongoing legal fight — The appeals court ruled against Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who argued that a lower court ruling expanding who can qualify for an absentee ballot during the coronavirus pandemic should have no effect while he appeals it. — The Texas Tribune

Eviction proceedings and debt collections can resume this month, Texas Supreme Court orders — The state’s highest civil court initially paused eviction proceedings and debt collections during the coronavirus pandemic. Those moratoriums are being lifted after more than 1.9 million Texans filed for unemployment. — The Texas Tribune

Supreme Court denies appeal by inmates over Texas prison’s COVID-19 protections — The Supreme Court denied a request by two inmates to require a Texas prison to put additional measures in place to protect against the spread of COVID-19. — UPI

A dangerous limbo: Probation and parole in the time of COVID-19 — More than 15,000 people in Texas who have been granted parole but still can’t go home, according to data published by the state corrections department. — ABA Journal

Amarillo lawyers warn against writing your will in panic during COVID-19 crisis (video) — Amarillo lawyers say they are seeing more people wanting assistance making a will during the coronavirus outbreak. — KFDA – Amarillo

7.000 free masks go quickly at local giveaway (video) — The law firm of Herrman & Herrman sponsored another drive-thru face mask give-away. The turnout was huge. — KRIS – Corpus Christi

Commentary: Attorneys connecting through social media in times of isolation — Here all of it is shared and it feels like a safe space where one can finally feel heard and understood. — Above the Law

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To keep up on the latest legal news from around the state, sign up for the State Bar of Texas’ Daily News Briefing by clicking here.

Curated by Texas Bar Today. Follow us on Twitter @texasbartoday.

Original author: Amy Starnes
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