Will waivers protect businesses from lawsuits during reopening?

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Will waivers protect businesses from lawsuits during reopening?
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Aaron Goldstein, a labor and employment partner at the international law firm Dorsey & Whitney, on if liability waiverr agreements protect businesses from lawsuits during covid reopening.

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As you know, more businesses that are reopening are posting coronavirus disclaimers or requiring employees and customers to sign waivers, but there's a big question mark as to whether these will hold up in court.

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Aaron Goldstein is a labor and employment partner at the international law firm Dorsey & Whitney. Goldstein has been advising businesses on measures that should be taken since the COVID crisis began. About waivers he says,

Aaron Goldstein On Waiver Agreements

"Waiver agreements are terrible PR for companies. Companies should be showing how they are keeping their workers safe, not how they are trying to avoid liability if their workers get sick," Goldstein says.

"Waiver agreements between employers and employees are also generally unenforceable except under very specific circumstances. Employees generally cannot waive workers compensation, which is the primary vehicle for addressing workplace injuries, such as a claim that an employee contracted a disease because of work. Some states, including California, have adopted a presumption that employees who catch COVID-19 caught it at work and are therefore covered by workers’ compensation. Employees also cannot waive their right to raise certain administrative charges, such as EEOC charges and OSHA complaints. Employees also cannot prospectively waive claims for intentional or fraudulent acts by their employers," Goldstein says.

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Jacob Wolinsky is the founder of ValueWalk.com, a popular value investing and hedge fund focused investment website. Jacob worked as an equity analyst first at a micro-cap focused private equity firm, followed by a stint at a smid cap focused research shop. Jacob lives with his wife and four kids in Passaic NJ. - Email: jacob(at)valuewalk.com - Twitter username: JacobWolinsky - Full Disclosure: I do not purchase any equities anymore to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest and because at times I may receive grey areas of insider information. I have a few existing holdings from years ago, but I have sold off most of the equities and now only purchase mutual funds and some ETFs. I also own a few grams of Gold and Silver

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