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Legal Alert

Mississippi Governor Encourages Telework For Non-Essential Businesses and Operations

3.26.20

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves recently issued Executive Order No. 1463, encouraging employers to allow employees to work from home to the maximum extent possible, directing residents to avoid non-essential gatherings of more than 10 people, limiting dine-in services, and implementing visitation bans on hospitals, nursing homes, and long-term care facilities. Notably, however, the Order does not mandate any type of “shut-down” but rather “recommends and encourages” all employers to allow employees to work from home. It is set to remain in effect until April 17, 2020.

What Is “Essential”?

Under the Order, Essential Businesses and/or Essential Operations are permitted to remain open, uninterrupted and operational during the COVID-19 State of Emergency. The Order states that any order, rule, regulation, or action by a governing body that imposes freedom of movement or social distancing limitations, restricts the scope of services or hours of operation of an Essential Business or Operation, or otherwise conflicts with or impedes the Order is suspended and unenforceable during the COVID-19 State of Emergency. This designation includes the following:

Non-Essential Gatherings

Per the Order, Mississippi residents are instructed to avoid social and non-essential gatherings of more than 10 people. This does not apply to the normal operation of airports, medical and healthcare facilities, retail shopping facilities, offices, factories, manufacturing facilities, or any Essential Business or Operation.

Schools

On March 16, 2020, Gov. Reeves announced the closure of Mississippi public schools through April 17, 2020. As noted in the above Order, education services are considered and “Essential Business or Operation” and are permitted to operate for the purposes listed above.

Conclusion

For now, we will continue to monitor the rapidly developing COVID-19 situation and provide updates as appropriate. Make sure you are subscribed to Fisher Phillips’ Alert System to get the most up-to-date information. For further information, contact your Fisher Phillips attorney or any member of our COVID-19 Taskforce. You can also review our nationwide Comprehensive and Updated FAQs for Employers on the COVID-19 Coronavirus and our FP Resource Center For Employers, maintained by our Taskforce.


This Legal Alert provides an overview of a specific state law. It is not intended to be, and should not be construed as, legal advice for any particular fact situation.

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