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March 23, 2020 / Law Alert

Ohio issues ‘Stay at Home’ order to require non-essential businesses to cease operations

As part of its ongoing efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19, on March 22, 2020, Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton, M.D., issued a Stay at Home Order. The order requires all non-essential businesses to cease operations effective 11:59 p.m. on Monday, March 23, 2020, and remains in place until 11:59 p.m. on April 6, 2020.

Under the Order, all Ohio residents may only leave their home or place of residence for essential activities, essential government functions, or to operate essential businesses and operations. The order is patterned after Illinois COVID-19 Executive Order No. 8, which was issued on March 20, 2020.

Essential businesses and operations include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • All 16 of the “Critical Infrastructure Sectors” identified in the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency’s March 19, 2020 memo
  • Healthcare
  • Essential infrastructure (including construction)
  • Stores that sell groceries and medicine
  • All businesses involved in the production and distribution of food and beverages
  • Gas stations
  • Financial and insurance institutions
  • Hardware and supply stores
  • Businesses that provide shipping and delivery services, or that ship and deliver groceries, food, goods or services to end users or through commercial channels
  • Restaurants for consumption off-premises
  • Supplies to work from home
  • Transportation
  • Home-based care and services
  • Professional services
  • Residential facilities and shelters
  • Hotels and motels
  • Critical labor union functions
  • Funeral services

Travel in Ohio will be restricted except for “essential activities” including tasks essential for health and safety, obtaining necessary supplies and services (e.g., grocery shopping), outdoor activity and providing care for others. No formal process to request exemptions from the order have been announced yet.

Porter Wright attorneys have been on the front lines in representing businesses before and after the issuance of Stay at Home Orders in jurisdictions throughout the country. Please contact your Porter Wright attorney for assistance with compliance with this order or similar orders issued in other states.

Information about COVID-19 and its impact on local, state and federal levels is changing rapidly. This article may not reflect updates to news, executive orders, legislation and regulations made after its publication date. Visit our COVID-19 resource page to find the most current information.