COVID-19 Coronavirus: Pro Bono
The Dechert community has pulled together to face the challenges that the pandemic has wrought in many ways – including by providing pro bono assistance to countless individuals, nonprofits and small businesses that have been devastated by COVID-19 and the economic fallout. In addition to carrying on with our usual array of pro bono work (which is now all being done remotely), the firm's COVID-19 related projects include:
- Throughout all of our offices, we are helping dozens of nonprofits and small businesses with respect to leases, contracts and employment issues.
- In the United States, we are helping nonprofits and small businesses apply for financial assistance under the CARES Act. We trained over 90 attorneys to take on these matters – and are partnering with community organizations in Massachusetts, New York, Connecticut, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, California and Texas to assist nonprofit organizations and small businesses in need.
- We have produced webinars, educational materials to nonprofits and two Dechert OnPoints on the impact of federal legislation on nonprofit organizations:
- We are staffing hotlines to help people apply for unemployment compensation.
- We are assisting individuals with wills, health care proxies, living wills and powers of attorney.
- Working with the American Civil Liberties Union, we helped secure the release of vulnerable detainees in ICE detention facilities. We have now expanded our work in this area and, partnering with the ACLU and other nonprofits, are seeking the release of vulnerable individuals in jails in Pennsylvania, Connecticut and other individual states. Our work has been both in the form of class actions as well as the filing of individual compassionate release petitions.
- Working with the Center for Reproductive Rights, we successfully challenged abortion restrictions that cropped up in Oklahoma in the wake of COVID-19.