November 26, 2022

Volume XII, Number 330


Governor DeSantis Signs Executive Order Eliminating and Superseding Local COVID-19 Mandates

On Monday, May 3, 2021, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed an executive order eliminating local COVID-19 restrictions. Executive Order 21-102, which is effective immediately, can be found here.

The new order places significant limitations on local governments’ COVID-19 related actions:

  • All local COVID-19 restrictions and mandates on individuals and businesses are suspended effective immediately.

  • All county or municipal emergency orders or ordinances “that impose restrictions or mandates upon businesses or individuals” related to COVID-19 are eliminated.

  • Counties and municipalities are prohibited from renewing or enacting any emergency orders or ordinances that impose restrictions on businesses and individuals due to COVID-19.

However, the order does not affect a business’s ability to make its own determination as to face masks, social distancing or other policies for employees, guests and/or customers. In making such decisions, businesses should consider CDC guidance, vaccination rates by employees, COVID-19 positivity rates in their particular area, potential liability concerns, and physical set up of their buildings and spaces. 

This order comes on the heels of the legislation from March 29, 2021 designed to provide Florida businesses and healthcare providers with substantial protections from COVID-19 related lawsuits (S.B. 72). [Previous Advisory on this topic can be found here.] Any contemplated actions a business takes pursuant to Executive Order 21-102 should take into account the provisions of S.B. 72.

As noted above, businesses should continue to closely monitor the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) guidance as it makes policy determinations.  

© 2007-2022 Hill Ward Henderson, All Rights ReservedNational Law Review, Volume XI, Number 124

About this Author

Robert A. Shimberg Commercial Litigation Attorney Hill Ward Henderson

Robert is a Shareholder in the firm's Litigation Group. His primary practice areas include commercial litigation, corporate compliance, cybersecurity, governmental relations and corporate investigations. He was formerly a prosecutor with the Hillsborough County State Attorney's Office.

Robert has provided compliance-related services and training to over 300 businesses around the country. He has defended businesses against consumer claims, class action lawsuits, and provided representation in connection with government agency inquiries and investigations and...

Ryan M. Guerin - Associate HWH Law complex commercial litigation labor and employment

Ryan is an associate in the firm’s Litigation group. His practice primarily focuses in the area of labor and employment. Ryan also covers an array of general and complex commercial litigation matters.

Ryan represents employers in litigation involving claims of employment harassment, discrimination, retaliation, leave laws, wage and hour laws, whistleblower laws, enforcement of and defense against non-solicitation and non-competition agreements, background check laws, and other employment-related claims. Ryan represents numerous industries, including clients...

Gordan Hill Employment Litigator Hill Ward Henderson

Gordon is a Shareholder in the firm’s Litigation and Employment Law Groups, and is the firm's Assistant General Counsel for Labor and Employment matters. His practice primarily involves employment litigation and counseling, as well as noncompete litigation and general commercial litigation.

In his employment practice, Gordon advises, represents and defends corporate clients in a broad spectrum of employment-related issues. Gordon has successfully defended clients in a wide variety of employment-related litigation, but...