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Lawyers Tackle Covid-19: Michael Kosnitzky of Pillsbury Winthrop

The novel coronavirus and the disease it causes, Covid-19, are having an unprecedented impact on businesses and individuals, and law firms are doubling down to provide counsel and maintain the operation of their firms. In this series we’re asking key questions of attorneys about how this global pandemic is affecting the work they do.

Mike Kosnitzky is co-leader of Pillsbury’s Wealth Management practice, and part of the 2020 Lawdragon 500.

Lawdragon: How has the novel coronavirus impacted your practice?

Michael Kosnitzky: I have hunkered down in our home in Aspen and it has become my command center. I have been on calls non-stop for the past couple weeks starting probably around 4:30 AM Mountain Time and ending well into the night. Many of my clients think generationally and are therefore looking for opportunities to deploy their capital during times of great uncertainty when cash is scarce and opportunities exist. Others want to understand how the CARES Act can be utilized in conjunction with their investing strategies or they are looking at opportunities that will arise from what some of them believe will be long-term systemic changes in the world economy. Others want to understand how debt covenants and other contractual provisions are impacted by forced governmental unemployment and shutdowns. For those who have operating businesses, there are many insurance related questions and questions about how they may directly benefit from the stimulus through the SBA 7(a) loans and $500 Billion Treasury Loan Programs.

LD: I’m glad you’re working from home. How else has your firm adjusted operations during this time?

MK: All of our attorneys and paralegals are working remotely and the firm has done a tremendous job in limiting inefficiencies. Our support staff has been extremely professional in making sure calls and mail get to me promptly and in setting up conference calls and Zoom and WebEx meetings. Many of our younger attorneys have young children and I often hear them in the background during calls or video conferences but I find this very heartwarming rather than a distraction.

LD: What is your top piece of advice for your clients in regards to this pandemic?

MK: America is the home of the free and the brave and in times like this we have to remember that freedom and bravery go hand in hand. So I tell my clients to be brave. There is great opportunity during the fog of war and they should actively seek it out rather than follow the herd or bury their head in the sand. Pillsbury has been here in one form or another for 151 years and we will probably be here at least another 151 more so we are always ready and we will always be there for our clients too.

Visit our Covid-19 Resource page for a round-up of legal resources regarding the novel coronavirus.