“There and back?”
As it has been for almost everyone, the Covid-19 pandemic has been the most serious crisis in our respective lifetimes.
Events happened so fast through mid-March that there was little time for advance planning.
We had organised for “Elder Law Issues” client presentations for later in March. Each one of those sessions was fully booked. However, noting the age demographic of many of those attending, we decided to postpone the presentations.
We only had two days notice for moving to the Alert Level 4 lockdown and the enforced closure of our offices as from 26 March 2020. We were able to set up our senior members of our team to operate from home. This worked reasonably well. It gave us access to our emails and to the Trust Account. What we did not have was access to our files and original client Deeds. Most importantly, we could not have face-to-face contact with our clients. Getting instructions, getting documents signed and being able to witness signatures was just so difficult.
Notwithstanding these difficulties we did persevere and managed to help a number of clients as well as get many property transactions settled. For clients with Family Law and litigation issues, the Courts mostly adjourned all cases for several months out.
In the meantime, over half of our people were at their homes unable to undertake tasks for us – all of them quite anxious to get back to work.
After a month of such restrictions and with the moving to Alert Level 3 it was great to get back into the office with all facilities and the full team available again. We had to put in place significant restrictions on contact with clients both for the protection and health of our clients and our team. All things considered those restrictions were a small price to pay to enable us to reopen and be available for clients.
On 14 May 2020 we moved to Alert Level 2. Finally, with certain limitations, we were able to meet with clients again. We are now fully operational.
Our intention is to hold the “Elder Law Issues” presentations as soon as it is appropriate and hopefully by Spring. We will advertise the dates closer to the time.
It has been a challenging journey which we suspect is not yet over. Stay safe.