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North Carolina Restricts Business Operations In Light Of COVID-19 Outbreak


North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper just issued Executive Order No. 120 in a series of continuing efforts to combat the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. The Executive Order, issued yesterday, has three main components: (1) it further limits large gatherings and orders certain businesses to temporarily cease operations; (2) restricts visitation at long-term care facilities; and (3) extends the school closure date through May 15, 2020.

Limitation On Mass Gatherings

Executive Order 120 further restricts mass gatherings that bring more than 50 people together in a single room or space. Festivals, parades, fairs, and gatherings at auditoriums, stadiums, arenas, large conference venues, or other confined space are prohibited. 

Entertainment facilities that do not have retail or dining components are ordered to close by 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 25, 2020.  These include:

Additionally, various personal care businesses are ordered to close by 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 25, 2020, including:

Violation of the closure order is punishable as a Class 2 misdemeanor. The limitation on mass gatherings does not apply to normal operations of transportation hubs, shopping malls, medical facilities, grocery stores, office environments, factories, or child care facilities. 

Limitations On Visitation

Executive Order 120 also restricts visitors and non-essential health care personnel from going to long-term care facilities, absent certain compassionate care situation.

Continuation Of School Closure

Finally, Executive Order 120 continues the closure of schools through Friday, May 15, 2020, unless otherwise extended. Employers should continue to develop and revisit leave policies relating to childcare during the COVID-19 pandemic.


We will continue to monitor this rapidly developing situation and provide updates as appropriate. Make sure you are subscribed to Fisher Phillips’ alert system to gather the most up-to-date information. For further information or advice on how to satisfy notice requirements as an employer, contact your Fisher Phillips attorney or any attorney in our Charlotte office, or any member of our COVID-19 Taskforce. You can also review our Comprehensive And Updated FAQs For Employers On The COVID-19 Coronavirus.

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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