On August 27, 2021, the Florida Department of Health issued a penalty provision rule about Florida’s recent statute governing Covid-19 Vaccine Documentation. Together, the law and rule prohibit businesses, government entities, and educational institutions from requiring customers or patrons to show proof of vaccination or post-infection recovery documentation or be penalized $5,000.00 per individual, with a separate violation against the business, governmental entity, or educational institution. Health care providers are the only exception and may continue to require vaccination documentation. In addition, companies, government entities, and educational institutions are permitted to continue using screening protocols consistent with authoritative or controlling government-issued guidance.
Notably, the new law and rule do not prohibit employers in Florida from requiring their employees to be vaccinated or to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination.
The new law and penalty only apply to requirements made of customers or patrons. The penalty provision rule becomes effective September 16, 2021. Once the Department has issued a notice of violation, the alleged violator can request a hearing; and any issued final order to pay will be due within thirty (30) days.