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The Legal Brief

How the Latest Pennsylvania Covid-19 Restrictions Alter Business Operations

December 14, 2020

By: Michael P. Leahey and Jason L. Ott

Pennsylvania Governor, Tom Wolf announced additional restrictions on business operations in response to a surge in Covid-19 cases. The restrictions went into effect on December 12, 2020, and will last until at least January 4, 2021. Similar to previous restrictions, some businesses will be forced to shut down while others shall just be limited in their operations. Additionally, certain restrictions that focus on gatherings require some businesses to comply with a specific capacity within their facilities. Here are a few of the businesses within Pennsylvania that are affected:  

  • Restaurants: Under these new restrictions, all indoor dining at food establishments is prohibited. However, outdoor dining, take-out food service, and take-out alcohol sales is permitted and may continue. 
  • Retail & Salons: The restrictions limit any “in-person” business that serves the public from operating at more than 50% capacity. 
  • Fitness Facilities: The indoor operation of fitness facilities such as gyms and exercise studios is prohibited. 
  • Entertainment Venues: Businesses such as theaters, casinos, clubs, and museums are prohibited from operating during the restriction period. 

These restrictions are tailored differently from the previous Red and Yellow phase restrictions set forth by the Governor during the spring. However, for some businesses the restrictions will be a return to the hardships that a shutdown presented. Businesses should evaluate their operations under these new restrictions by carefully reviewing the Governor’s announcement in detail. For guidance regarding preparations and operations, our attorneys are available by phone and email to assist. 


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