Client Alerts, News Articles & Blog Posts

Everything you need to know about BMD and the industry.

Did You Receive More than $750,000 in Provider Relief Funds?

The Provider Relief Funds (“PRF”) - authorized under the CARES Act - have been a vital tool for health care providers during the COVID-19 public health emergency. These funds have allowed providers to stay open and continue to offer care during these pressing times. While helpful, these funds do come with several important obligations. First, fund recipients are required to comply with certain record-keeping requirements as well as comply with certain balance billing prohibitions. See our Client Alert. Second, fund recipients are required to report their intent, use of funds, and other data elements, which helps promote transparency to the federal government. Please see our Client Alert on provider relief fund reporting requirements. Third, and perhaps a new concept for many providers, fund recipients of more than $750,000 must undergo a “single audit” to ensure program compliance and appropriate use of funds.

A single audit analyzes how an organization spends federal funds. Under the PRF, providers have two audit options: (1) a single audit on the financial statements of the entity; or (2) a program-specific single audit on just the revenue and expenditures related to PRF payments.

The federal government has an interest in certifying disbursed funds are properly used and put towards their intended purpose. Auditors review a wide range of criteria, including eligibility, cash management and engaging in allowable expenses. Reviewers will examine all documentation related to the use of PRF dollars, including, but not limited to, invoices, contracts, balance sheets, and other accounting records. To help expedite the audit process, providers are encouraged to keep organized and detailed documentation and track every cent of spending. Providers should be ready to connect an expense to the intended purpose of the funding. BMD has created a Provider Relief Fund Policy as well as a spreadsheet to assist providers in tracking expenses, revenues, and appropriate use of PRF.

A single audit is often due within 9 months after the end of the audit period. Since the PRF covers the 2020 calendar year, a single audit related to these funds should be completed by September 2021. Extensions may be granted on a case-by-case. Providers should anticipate an audit to take anywhere between 3-7 days.

Please contact BMD Healthcare and Hospital Law Member, Amanda Waesch at alwaesch@bmdllc.com or 330-253-9185 if you have any questions regarding PRF audits, which audit type might be best for your practice, or any other general CARES Act and PRF questions.

BMD Appellate Win Clarifies Waiver of Contractual Right to Arbitrate

Brennan, Manna & Diamond, LLC attorneys David M. Scott, Lucas K. Palmer, and Krista D. Warren prevailed before the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit regarding if/when a party waives a contractual right to arbitrate. Borror Property Management, LLC v. Oro Karric North, LLC, No. 20-3146 (the “Decision”).

Relief for Ohio Under the Federal American Rescue Plan Act

On March 11, 2021, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act (the “Act”) — a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package — a significant portion of which will be directed to the State of Ohio to support economic recovery, as outlined below.

Cleveland Manufacturer Violated OFAC Sanctions By Allowing Shipments To Iran - Know Your Customer and Know Their Customer

UniControl, Inc., a Cleveland, Ohio manufacturer of process controls, airflow pressure switches, boiler controls and other instruments, agreed to pay the Office of Foreign Assets Control “OFAC,” the financial enforcement agency of the U.S. Treasury Department, $216,464 to settle its liabilities for violations of the Iran Sanctions Program. OFAC stated that “this enforcement action highlights the importance of identifying and assessing multiple warning signs that indicate a foreign trade partner may be re-exporting goods to a sanctioned jurisdiction.”

Ohio Breach of Contract Statute of Limitations Shortened to 6 Years

On March 16, 2021, Governor DeWine signed into law S.B. 13 which shortens Ohio’s statute of limitations for filing lawsuits based on breach of contract. A statute of limitation is the time period within which a party must file a lawsuit before its claim expires as a matter of law.

Chinese Product Tariff Challenge Causes Flurry of Importer Lawsuits

A lawsuit filed late in 2020 at the U.S. Court of International Trade (“CIT”) challenging the U.S. Trade Representative’s (USTR) implementation of Section 301 “List 3” and “List 4” duties on products from China, HMTX Industries LLC et al. v. United States (Court No. 20-00177), has resulted in the filing of thousands of additional lawsuits brought by other affected importers. There are now 3,700+ companies added to the list, including Ford, Home Depot, Target, Tesla, and Walgreens, along with many other smaller importers.