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Thousands of businesses in South Florida close amid coronavirus pandemic

Posted at 12:20 AM, Aug 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-04 00:21:46-04

DELRAY BEACH, Fla.  — More than 3 thousand businesses in South Florida have closed since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, according to a report released by Yelp.

Owners of Hurricane Bar and Lounge in Delray Beach haven't been allowed to open to remodeling the bar. They are running out of patience and money.

"We still have the rent, we still have the utilities, we still have the liquor liability," said Ed Buxton, co-owner of Hurricane Bar and Lounge.

Buxton runs the bar with his wife and business partner.

"I'm 70 years old and a disabled veteran, my partner is an ex-US Marine. My wife’s a retired school teacher," he said.

With no income for the past 4 months, they are footing the bills.

"It's coming out of our savings from all the years," added Buxton.

Capital Calls Attorney Michael Pike says it's when business owners have to contribute their own money so the business can survive.

"If they didn’t get enough money from the coronavirus response act they’re looking for money to survive," said Pike.

A Yelp report shows that since mid-April, more than three thousand businesses in South Florida have closed, businesses that were open March 1.

Pike says if a business is planning to close, there are some things they should be aware of.

"Not all the stakeholders have to agree to dissolve a business. You can move to dissolve a business as minority shareholder," he explained.

Pike's advice is to talk to a lawyer and an accountant. If you don't plan to close, like Hurricane Bar and Lounge still hanging in there, check your insurance policy to see if you can make a business interruption claim.

"You need to look at it to determine whether or not you have a virus exclusion, a bacteria exclusion, and a civil authority exclusions. You have to send that policy to a lawyer to review it," he said. Buxton says they don't know how long they can hang on but are hopeful there's an end in sight.

We’re optimistic that the mayor, the governor would act responsibly at some point and say alright we’re going to give you the opportunity," said Buxton.