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Travelers all wear masks to prevent infection from coronavirus. Photo: B.Zhou/Shutterstock.com Travelers all wear masks to prevent infection from coronavirus. Photo: B.Zhou/Shutterstock.com

With more than 115,000 cases confirmed in more than 100 countries, the coronavirus has emerged as an unquestioned global public health threat. While the course of the crisis continues to evolve and governments around the world, particularly in high-risk countries such as China, Italy, and South Korea, mobilize to deal with the immediate threat, the longer-term strategic impacts of the situation also require analysis and strategic planning.

We offer the following preliminary thoughts on the possible business and legal impacts of the virus. The situation remains too fluid to be predictable and there are many legal gray areas and unanswerable questions, but there are also a number of topics that businesses need to be prepared to address in three areas: business interruption issues, employment law and real estate.

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