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David Mawhinney quoted in Worcester Telegram’s “Force to reckon with: ‘Force majeure’ clause can be safety valve for businesses hit by virus”

The coronavirus pandemic has some businesses focusing on the contract clause force majeure.  This is a commonly found, but not commonly used, clause in contracts that allows both parties to be freed of liability in the case of events and situations out of our control.  These situations are also referred to as “acts of God”.  The Worcester Telegram spoke with David Mawhinney about force majeure clauses during this changing time.

However, Mawhinney said, because most force majeure clauses written before the pandemic don’t include words like “disease” “epidemic” or “quarantine,” they are not going to apply to the COVID-19-caused emergencies. “Acts of God” is usually interpreted by courts as such things such as floods, tornadoes, and hurricanes. But, going forward, words related to epidemics will be included as events to trigger force majeure.

Continue reading “Force to reckon with: ‘Force majeure’ clause can be safety valve for businesses hit by virus” on the Worcester Telegram website.

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