Guidelines for Businesses Opening in Phase Yellow

Updated May 5th, 2020

On May 4th, 2020 Gov. Tom Wolf (PA) announced the guidelines for businesses that will be re-opening in Phase Yellow on May 8th. See our post here about what counties will be opening and what Gov. Wolf said in that press conference. 

The information we used for this post is from Gov. Wolf’s website and their seven-page document for guidelines in Phase Yellow.


Under Phase Yellow, any company and employee who is able to telework should remain able to telework. If a business should need to operate in-person, they must follow the following guidelines;

-Disinfect frequently touched areas and continue cleaning the building and areas regularly.

-Have a plan implemented in case an employee or someone who had contact with any area of the business is positive or probable for COVID-19. This plan should include; decontaminating and securing the affected area, identify employees who were in contact with the person who might have COVID-19, take employees temperatures upon entering and if someones is over 100.4 they should be sent home, encourage and inform any employee who is sick or has symptoms to stay home, advising sick employees to follow CDC guidelines, and suggesting to employers to have a liberal sick time policy.

-Prevent large groups of people to enter or leave at the same time. It is recommended to achieve this to implement staggering work times.

-Limit the number of people in break rooms or other common areas where people tend to congregate.

-If a meeting is needed with 10 or more people, then it is suggested to hold these virtual. If the meeting is 10 or less then make sure there is enough space for everyone to be six feet apart.

-Ensure that everyone has access to soap and water, disinfectant, and hand sanitizer.

-Provide masks and be sure that all of the employees are wearing their masks at all times.

-Make sure the business has enough employees to operate successfully and safely.

-Discourage people from entering the business if it is not necessary.

-Constantly and consistently communicate with employees so they are aware of these guidelines and are able to keep themselves safe.


If your business is within a building or another defined area, then they should follow the guidelines suggested above and the following:

-When possible, conduct business by appointments only.

-If this is not feasible to have appointments, then limit occupancy to 50% of the total occupancy limit.

-Adjust business hours to allow for extra time for cleaning.

-Install barriers at registers to physically separate employees with the general public.

-Suggest and encourage pick-up or delivery options to your customers.

-Designate a specific time for vulnerable populations.

-Require everyone on the premises to wear masks. “However, individuals who cannot wear a mask due to a medical condition (including children under the age of 2 years per CDC guidance) may enter the premises and are not required to provide documentation of such medical condition.” (

-If there are multiple registers, limit use to every other register to keep safe distance and rotate every hour to allow time to clean the previous registers.

-Schedule breaks for employees to wash their hands. This is encouraged to do at least every hour.

-Have an employee assigned to wiping down carts and baskets before customers use them. 

Businesses who are serving the public or operating in-person must inform everyone of these guidelines. Businesses also have to print and sign the ‘COVID-19 Safety Procedures for Businesses’ flyer and post it. They can be found here.

We will continue to update this with any changes we find. You can also follow along on the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s website

Our team is doing our best to track all updates and will also post updates on our Facebook page.

Please reach out if you need any help or have any questions!