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330 East Kilbourn Avenue, Suite 1170
Milwaukee, WI 53202
GRGB Law

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We're All In This Together: Legal Services are considered Essential Services under Gov. Evers' "Safer At Home" Order. Our attorneys and staff remain available by phone and email to assist you with all of your legal needs during this time of uncertainty. You can count on us to continue to perform the highest quality legal services and serve our clients as we have done since 1968. For more information, please visit our COVID-19 Client Safety Resource page at grgblaw.com.

Milwaukee civil litigation attorneyMilwaukee fraud lawyerBy Ray Dall’Osto and Chris Hayden

The federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires each of the nationwide credit reporting companies — Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion — to provide individuals with a free copy of their credit report, at their request, once every 12 months. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act of March 2020 also gives consumers some credit protections. It dictates how companies that send data to the credit bureaus will report accounts for which consumers have payment accommodations in place. If a consumer has an accommodation, and they live up to their end of the deal, an account that had been current previously will continue to be reported that way for both account status and payment history, assuming compliance with the accommodation. A consumer can also ask lenders to add a code to their credit report to indicate that they were “affected by a natural or declared disaster.”

The Federal Trade Commission announced in May 2020 that an agreement has been reached with the nationwide credit reporting companies to allow for free, weekly credit reports, not just one free report per year. Given the increase in the number of scams and frauds that are accompanying the coronavirus pandemic (e.g., fraudulent unemployment compensation applications using hacked personal information), individuals should be more careful, and they can now make themselves better aware, by more frequently checking their credit histories at the official website noted below.

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Milwaukee, WI nursing home liability attorneyBy Attorney Jaclyn Kallie

Nationally, COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes have exceeded 20,000.  Faced with a potential flood of lawsuits, states are granting emergency protections from claims of inadequate care. In Wisconsin, health care providers have been granted immunity from civil liability, with certain exceptions, for injuries, deaths, or other types of damages resulting from their services during the COVID-19 crisis. This immunity provision, found in a newly created statute, sec. 895.4801, is part of a larger COVID-19 relief law that was signed into law by Gov. Tony Evers on April 15.

The law grants immunity to health care “providers” and “professionals,” which includes hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities (Residential Care Apartment Complexes, Community Based Residential Facilities, and Adult Family Homes), hospice, physicians, nurses, physician assistants, and physical, speech, and occupational therapists. This immunity also covers employees, contractors, and agents of the aforementioned providers and professionals.

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Milwaukee property tax assessment attorneyBy Russell J. Karnes

Residents and commercial property owners across Milwaukee and Wisconsin are in sticker shock after receiving notices of huge increases in real estate property tax assessments in the mail. Property owners must be left to wonder: what in the world is the assessor thinking? Milwaukee’s assessors, in particular, could not have sent their revaluation notices at a worse time. While the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic has shuttered many businesses and put people out of work, property owners are looking for ways to cut expenses to keep their homes and maintain tenants. Property owners are now left to worry about the potential for big increases in next year’s property tax bills because of higher assessments.

While Wisconsin property owners have little or no control over tax rates, the time to object to property tax assessments and challenge assessed values is now.

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Milwaukee insurance litigation lawyer coronavirusBy Attorney Chris Strohbehn and Law Clerk Nathan Froemming.

Has your insurance claim for business interruption been denied despite the presence of a “contamination clause” in your insurance policy? The coronavirus has caused businesses to close across the nation, resulting in lost revenue for many small business owners. As a result, many businesses, especially restaurants and bars, are reviewing their insurance policies to see if they can file an insurance claim to seek relief.

One common provision found in insurance policies is a “contamination clause.” For example, an insurer may pay for lost business income caused by “‘Contamination’ that results in an action by a public health or other governmental authority that prohibits access to described premises or production of your product.” Furthermore, “contamination” is defined in some policies as “a defect, deficiency, inadequacy or dangerous conditions in your products, merchandise, or premises.” This is the language found in one insurance policy, so different policies might have different language or exclusions that may impact the coverage. An insurance claim will always depend on the terms of an individual policy, so remember to look at your own policy.

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Milwaukee business contract attorney COVID-19By Attorney Jaclyn Kallie

The impact of the COVID-19 outbreak continues to escalate each day. Issues continue to arise both due to the outbreak itself and as a result of our response to it. We will continue to monitor the legal implications of the pandemic and help address legal and practical issues that may arise during this challenging time.

The COVID-19 pandemic presents multiple different types of potential contractual issues.  Of particular importance is a force majeure clause that may be present in a contract. A force majeure clause is intended to address a potential “force of nature” disruption that may excuse performance of a contract. Even if a contract does not have a force majeure clause, it may still be possible to excuse performance under other legal theories, including frustration of purpose.

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Milwaukee business insurance lawyerBy Attorney Christopher Strohbehn

Coronavirus is greatly affecting the way businesses normally operate when using leased property. Some businesses have been forced to shut down because of government-required closures, and other landlords are choosing to close properties on their own. What should a business owner consider if they are not able to operate their business in their leased space?

Obligations of the Landlord Are Independent of the Obligations of the Tenant

Landlords and tenants are reviewing their leases to determine if any remedies are available to tenants due to a business shut down caused by the Coronavirus pandemic. A normal lease will state that the payment of rent by the tenant is an obligation independent from the obligations of the landlord according to the lease. Under most common commercial leases, the tenant will not have the right to offset rent unless the lease specifically includes this right. Unfortunately for tenants, most leases state that landlords are not liable for a building’s closure or for failure to provide access, utilities or services in emergency situations, and thus an offset of rent is not required by the landlord.

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Milwaukee, WI nurse licensing attorneyBy Attorney Kristen Nelson

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, there was a nursing shortage in Wisconsin. Now, that shortage is reaching a critical level. The State of Wisconsin and Governor Tony Evers have taken an “all hands-on deck” approach. On Friday, March 27, 2020, Governor Evers Issued Emergency Order #16, relating to certain health care providers and the Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS). The Order applies to all heath care providers in various licensing situations.

Several administrative rules pertaining to nursing were suspended in this Order in an effort to increase the availability of nurses in Wisconsin during this health crisis. These administrative rules primarily affect new nurses and nurses whose licenses have expired.

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Milwaukee healthcare license defense lawyerBy Attorney Kristen Nelson

On Friday, March 27, 2020, Governor Tony Evers Issued Emergency Order #16, relating to certain health care providers and the Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS). The Order applies to all heath care providers in various licensing situations. The purpose of the order is to increase the availability of health care providers in Wisconsin during this health crisis. One group that is addressed in the order are out-of-state licensed health care professionals who are currently living in Wisconsin. Under certain circumstances, an out-of-state licensed health care professional may be able to practice in Wisconsin without first obtaining a temporary or permanent license.

Normally, a health care provider licensed in another state needs to go through the licensing process in Wisconsin. Under Governor Evers’ order, a health care provider with a valid and current license issued by another state is able to practice under that license and within the scope of that license in Wisconsin. The license holder does not need to first obtain a temporary or permanent license from DSPS prior to starting work if the following conditions are met:

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Milwaukee, WI business litigation lawyer COVID-19By Attorney Jaclyn Kallie

Courts in each county, as well as the Eastern and Western Districts of Wisconsin, have responded differently to COVID-19 by implementing a variety of measures that are affecting existing and contemplated civil litigation matters. We are continuing to monitor these announcements and are committed to providing you with the most up-to-date information as it becomes available. Most notably, on March 22, Justice Bradley issued an order suspending all civil jury trials scheduled prior to May 22 and temporarily suspending all in-person proceedings statewide, with certain limited exceptions. Many hearings and court conferences can and will continue to occur by remote attendance. Likewise, mediations and depositions can also be conducted remotely. While remote technology can provide an alternate solution to certain aspects of litigation, not every court will be as sympathetic as others with regard to extensions, and parties need to remain mindful of existing deadlines. 

Last week, Governor Tony Evers instituted a Stay-At-Home Order, ordering the non-essential workforce to stay at home. While necessary to fight COVID-19, the governor’s order will have significant and wide ranging legal consequences.

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Milwaukee, WI real estate lawyer coronavirus eviction foreclosureBy Russell J. Karnes

Because of the public health emergency caused by the rapid spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), on March 27, 2020, Wisconsin’s Governor and the Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Health Services issued an emergency order prohibiting landlords from moving forward with eviction actions and mortgagees from moving forward with foreclosures. In doing so, the Governor is mirroring what had effectively already been done by court order in Milwaukee and Dane Counties.

The Governor’s statewide order goes further than the prior court orders by prohibiting landlords from serving notices for failure to pay rent (five-day notices) and any other notices terminating tenancy unless necessary to protect against serious physical harm to another (i.e. in cases of domestic violence). Landlords are also prohibited from filing eviction actions and from having writs of restitution served by the sheriff.

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