Ward Law LLC is dedicated to keeping our clients informed about all things COVID-19 related. Our business is to ensure that you have all the information you need to keep your business going. In that regard, please read below for updates on the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
On March 19, 2020, Governor Tom Wolf ordered that all non-life-sustaining businesses in Pennsylvania must close their physical locations to slow the spread of COVID-19. This mandate was issued to take effect at 8:00 PM. However, the ensuing high volume of requests for waivers forced the Wolf administration to postpone enforcement of the order to Monday, March 23 at 8:00 AM.
Businesses considering whether they are subject to the business closure order should:
- Consult the PA Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) list to see whether their operations are defined as life-sustaining, and
- Email DCED customer service resource account at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 1-877-PA-HEALTH and select option 1 to reach DCED staff to confirm their status.
The PA Department of Community and Economic Development (“DCED”) FAQ’s are available here. This is a comprehensive list of frequently asked questions regarding whether your business is a non-life-sustaining business, how to request a waivers, timeframes, and other issues related to the closure order.
If it is determined that your business falls within the non-life-sustaining category, and you want to seek a waiver, there is an online waiver application available here.
When your business completes and submits a request for waiver application, DCED will review your request. Its stated criteria for approval is to balance public safety while ensuring the continued delivery of critical infrastructure services and functions. DCED advises applicants of its decision on any waiver application via email and will notify whether their operations may re-open. However, businesses applying for a waiver must remain closed until a decision is made about their waiver application.
Businesses of all sizes may find it helpful to consult legal counsel in aid of submitting a waiver application that demonstrates to DCED why a waiver should be granted.
For any questions about the Pennsylvania business waivers, please contact a Ward Law attorney at any time.