Member News

Littler: Bouncing Back – A List of Statewide Return to Work Protocols

Updated July 13 |

Government officials across the country are easing up, or preparing to ease up, on the stringent business closures and stay at home orders that helped the nation successfully slow the spread of COVID-19. Each jurisdiction will emerge from this collective state of suspended animation by implementing different measures, and on different timetables.

In many instances, businesses can expect two types of guidance from their governors and public health officials: (1) overarching framework materials, setting forth various phases of the anticipated reopening process and identifying criteria for advancement through the recovery period; and (2) more specific orders that supersede prior closure directives and permit particular operations to resume on certain dates and under certain conditions. Employers can also expect that these materials will establish new health and safety protocols for the workplace—such as mandatory health screenings and face coverings—that may remain in place for the foreseeable future. Indeed, many reopening plans include multiple mitigation steps, such as limits on occupancy, sanitation and physical distancing requirements, and new posting duties.

The chart below provides links to general reopening plans and orders that have been issued thus far, at the statewide level. Employers should bear in mind that these materials typically offer detailed instructions for reopening, which often vary by industry. As a result, it is important to review each order along with any accompanying official guidance to get a complete picture of all requirements and how they may impact each employer’s operations. We will update this list regularly but expect it will become outdated quickly as new announcements are made. Employers might also wish to review our interactive reopening map.

Note that this chart does not cover orders or guidance issued at the local level. Employers should consult with counsel for our additional resources on orders that may apply to their operations.

For a list of all states, please click the following link: Bouncing Back – A List of Statewide Return to Work Protocols


Reopening Framework Materials

Specific Orders, Guidance

Last Updated

New York New York Forward

Framework Announcement (4/28/20)

Regional Approach Annoucement (5/4/20)

Executive Order 202.31 re: Regional Approach (5/14/20)

New York Forward Website

Executive Order 202.33 (5/22/20)

Executive Order 202.35 (5/29/20)

Executive Order 202.36 (6/1/20)

Executive Order 202.34 (5/29/20) (right to refuse patrons without face coverings)

Executive Order 202.38 (6/6/20) (includes temperature check discretion)

Announcement re: Expanded Gatherings in Phase 3 (6/15/20)

Announcement re: Orders on Restaurant/Bar Obligations (6/1/20)

Announcement re: Regions to Phase Four (6/25/20)

Announcement re: Western New York to Phase Four (6/29/20)

Announcement re: Capital Region to Phase Four (6/30/20)

Announcement re: NYC to Phase Three(7/5/20)

Announcement re: 2 Regions to Phase Four (7/6/20) and Confirmation (7/7/20)

Announcement re: Malls Reopening in Phase Four (7/8/20)

Phase One Overview and Guidance

Phase Two Overview and Guidance

Phase Three Overview and Guidance

Phase Four Overview and Guidance

Regional Map and Status of Regional Reopening


Compliments of Littler Mendelson – a member of the EACCNY.