Delta variant might limit business journey – business insurance
Months after business travel was expected to tick up after vaccinations and a slowdown in COVID-19 transmission, legal experts say the Delta variant could turn things upside down again.
"We're probably back to where we were in 2020," said Carin Burford, Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart P.C. in Birmingham, Alabama, helping companies address safety issues and compensation issues. "The Delta variant is so much more contagious" than the initial burden businesses faced in the early days of the pandemic when business travel stalled.
An on August 2nd from Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd. Business Insights report published that business travel is expected to pick up “significantly” in the second half of 2021, but will still be well below pre-pandemic levels at a third of 150 companies. The travel managers surveyed said that they are likely to remain below 25% of 2019 spending by the end of 2021.
The survey, conducted from May 28 to June 10, found that the reopening of offices, which will accelerate this fall, combined with continued improvement in vaccination and infection rates, will give domestic business travel a boost in the final quarter of 2021. "
That sentiment has since reversed, some say, after vaccination rates stalled in June and July and COVID-19 cases soared in August.
"Employers are pulling back a little," said Robert Robenalt, partner at Fisher & Phillips LLP in Columbus, Ohio. "I think employers tend to be more precautionary in their business dealings."
Ms. Burford said employers should consider whether their workers are vaccinated when they travel, as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has specific guidelines – which the labor protection agency follows – that run 7-10. call for days of quarantine after the trip for unvaccinated people.
“I would say no (travel) unless you are vaccinated; it is not practical under the current guidelines, ”she said, adding that employers should not reconsider essential travel, even for vaccinated people in some cases. “Businesses should ask whether the trip is necessary enough? Can you do it virtually or do you have to do it in person? "
Jeff Adelson, Newport Beach, Calif., Co-executive director of Adelson McLean APC, said employers in states with COVID-19 suspicions of employee compensation – such as California – should be extra careful when traveling on business because of the risks of the virus while traveling and attending Meetings and conferences can be larger and result in liability.
"If someone has to travel for their job and they are in a crowded airport and in meetings and that creates a greater likelihood of transmission than the general population, then I think that would be a compensatory right," he said.
Mr Robenalt said many things are case-specific and country-specific, as injuries sustained during the business trip tend to raise questions such as employee "deviating" from work to go to dinner or to run a personal errand. The rollout of a contagious virus that is practically everywhere as bodily harm will require closer scrutiny without setting any legal precedent, he said.
"To prove this claim would be challenging as it is a difficult analysis of where and how someone gets this disease," he said. "There are a lot of variables."