This Won’t Hurt a Bit: Employee Temperature and Health Screenings – A List of Statewide Orders

Governors and public health officials across the country have implemented stringent measures to help contain the spread of COVID-19. Some jurisdictions require employers to screen the health of employees, often as they begin a shift. These health screening steps, including temperature checks, remain common as officials and employers grapple with fluctuating case rates.

This post covers statewide laws and orders that require employers to take employees’ temperatures and/or conduct other employee health screening procedures, such as asking employees about any COVID-19-consistent symptoms using a questionnaire or checklist. This chart covers only generally applicable requirements and does not cover the heightened requirements applicable to certain types of employees, such as healthcare workers; public health workers; long-term care, assisted living, and nursing home workers; first responders; and law enforcement. We will update this list regularly but expect it will become outdated quickly as new announcements are made.

Note that this list does not include temperature or health screening requirements at the local level. If you would like more information, please contact your Littler attorney for additional resources that summarize such requirements at both the state and local level.

In addition, this post does not address other significant issues related to employer screenings of employee health, including potential wage and hour, discrimination, and privacy concerns. As a result, employers should consult with counsel for details on additional orders that may apply to their operations and for guidance on related legal questions.

Tracking and complying with these requirements present significant challenges for employers, particularly those operating in different locations around the country. To assist our clients with these challenges, our ComplianceHR has created SmartScreen™, an automated screening solution that allows employers to easily send jurisdiction-specific screening questionnaires for select employees to complete before they come into the office each day. Please visit https://compliancehr.com/solutions/smartscreen/ for more information about this solution, or contact Info@compliancehr.com to set up a demo.

Employers interested in further information may wish to consult our articles identifying statewide vaccination mandates as well as face covering guidance and reopening and mitigation protocols.

Jurisdiction

Temperature Screening

Other Health Screening

Federal

No requirement

Recommended. Employers should consider conducting daily in-person or virtual health checks (e.g., symptom and temperature screening) of employees before they enter the facility, in accordance with state and local public health authorities and, if available, state occupational health services.

Alabama

No requirement

No requirement

Alaska

No requirement

No requirement

Arizona

No requirement

No requirement

Arkansas

No requirement

No requirement

California

No requirement

Required. The employer shall develop and implement a process for screening employees for and responding to employees with COVID-19 symptoms. The employer may ask employees to evaluate their own symptoms before reporting to work. If the employer conducts screening indoors at the workplace, the employer shall ensure that face coverings are used during screening by both screeners and employees who are not fully vaccinated and, if temperatures are measured, that non-contact thermometers are used.

NOTE: At least one California locality may have provisions concerning employee health screenings. Please check with your Littler attorney for additional information about your particular jurisdiction.

Colorado

Recommended. Employers are strongly encouraged to follow the best practices for disease mitigation found in CDPHE sector guidance. The sector guidance for most industries calls for symptom screening and temperature checks.

Recommended. Employers are strongly encouraged to follow the best practices for disease mitigation found in CDPHE sector guidance. The sector guidance for most industries calls for symptom screening and temperature checks.

Connecticut

No requirement

No requirement

Delaware

Recommended. Employers should consider conducting daily in-person or virtual health checks (e.g., symptom and temperature screening) of employees before they enter the facility.

Recommended. Employers should consider conducting daily in-person or virtual health checks (e.g., symptom and temperature screening) of employees before they enter the facility.

District of Columbia

No requirement

Recommended. Businesses can consider screening employees for symptoms before shifts. Screening can be done by attestation before arrival or on-site.

Florida

No requirement

No requirement

Georgia

No requirement

No requirement

Hawaii

No requirement

No requirement

NOTE: At least one Hawaii locality may have provisions concerning employee health screenings. Please check with your Littler attorney for additional information about your particular jurisdiction.

Idaho

No requirement

No requirement 

Illinois

No requirement

No requirement

Indiana

No requirement

No requirement

Iowa

No requirement

No requirement

Kansas

Recommended. Employers should monitor employees' temperatures regularly. The state provides a template screening form for logging symptoms.

Recommended. Employers should monitor employees' symptoms regularly. The state provides a template screening form for logging symptoms.

Kentucky

Recommended. Employers should require employees to undergo daily temperature checks and health assessments for specified symptoms. These assessments may be either self-administered or administered by the business prior to workplace entry. Self-administered assessments may performed at home.

Recommended. Employers should require employees to undergo daily temperature checks and health assessments for specified symptoms. These assessments may be either self-administered or administered by the business prior to workplace entry. Self-administered assessments may performed at home. 

Louisiana

Recommended. Employers should measure each employee’s temperature and assess symptoms prior to the start of work. Ideally, temperature checks should occur before entering the facility.

Recommended. Employers should measure each employee’s temperature and assess symptoms prior to the start of work.

Maine

No requirement

No requirement

Maryland

Recommended. Employers should implement a daily screening process for workers and other personnel which include CDC or MDH recommended health questions and consider temperature testing.

Recommended. Employers should implement a daily screening process for workers and other personnel which include CDC or MDH recommended health questions and consider temperature testing.

Massachusetts

No requirement

No requirement

Michigan

 

No requirement

No requirement

Minnesota

No requirement

No requirement

Mississippi

No requirement

No requirement

Missouri

No requirement 

No requirement 

Montana

Recommended. Businesses should make reasonable efforts to develop and implement appropriate policies based on industry best practices regarding temperature checks and symptom screening.

Recommended. Businesses should make reasonable efforts to develop and implement appropriate policies based on industry best practices regarding temperature checks and symptom screening.

Nebraska

No requirement

Recommended. Employers are strongly encouraged to complete employee pre-screening (e.g. assess for any symptoms consistent with COVID-19) prior to starting work.

Nevada

No requirement 

No requirement 

New Hampshire

No requirement

Recommended. Employers should consider active screening or daily self-attestation of staff and volunteers each day before work for fever, symptoms of COVID-19, or risk factors for exposure, especially for those who provide services requiring close prolonged contact between staff and customers (people are within 6 feet of each other for 10 minutes or longer). 

New Jersey

Recommended for restaurants and other food and beverage establishments. Employers should conduct daily health checks (e.g., temperature screening and/or symptom checking) of employees safely and respectfully, and in accordance with any applicable privacy laws and regulations.

Recommended for gyms and fitness centers and high-touch amusement and recreation activities: a facility shall conduct a temperature screening and questionnaire of staff and clients upon entrance to the facility. Any individual who is found to have a temperature of 100.4 or above, or who answers yes to any of the symptom screening questions, should be denied entrance to the facility.

Recommended for restaurants and other food and beverage establishments. Employers should conduct daily health checks (e.g., temperature screening and/or symptom checking) of employees safely and respectfully, and in accordance with any applicable privacy laws and regulations.

Recommended for gyms and fitness centers and high-touch amusement and recreation activities: a facility shall conduct a temperature screening and questionnaire of staff and clients upon entrance to the facility. Any individual who is found to have a temperature of 100.4 or above, or who answers yes to any of the symptom screening questions, should be denied entrance to the facility.

New Mexico

No requirement

Recommended. Employers should adhere to CDC guidance for symptom screening and send employees home if they are experiencing any of the specified COVID-19 symptoms.

New York

No requirement

Required when the state health commissioner designates an airborne infectious disease as a highly contagious communicable disease that presents a serious risk of harm to the public, pursuant to the NY HERO Act.

Note: the state health commissioner made this designation for COVID-19 on 9/6/2021. Employees will be screened for symptoms of the infectious disease at the beginning of their shift. Employees are to self-monitor throughout their shift and report any new or emerging signs or symptoms of the infectious disease.

North Carolina

No requirement

Recommended. Employers should conduct daily symptom screening of employees at entrance to workplace and immediately send symptomatic workers home to isolate. Screening questionnaire here.

North Dakota

Recommended at the orange risk level for restaurants, banquet and event venues, and personal care services. Screen employees for symptoms, including temperature checks.

Department of Health Employee Screening Tool

Recommended at the orange risk level for restaurants, banquet and event venues, and personal care services. Screen employees for symptoms, including temperature checks.

Department of Health Employee Screening Tool

Ohio

No requirement

No requirement

Oklahoma

No requirement

No requirement

Oregon

Recommended. Employers should consider regular health checks (e.g., temperature and respiratory symptom screening) or symptom self-report of employees, if job-related and consistent with business necessity.

Recommended. Employers should consider regular health checks (e.g., temperature and respiratory symptom screening) or symptom self-report of employees, if job-related and consistent with business necessity.

Pennsylvania

No requirement

No requirement

NOTE: At least one Pennsylvania locality may have provisions concerning employee health screenings. Please check with your Littler attorney for additional information about your particular jurisdiction.

Puerto Rico

No requirement. However, employers must continue to follow their own COVID-19 Exposure Control Plans as required by the labor department. Any amendment to the employer's previous screening requirements shall be promptly notified to employees. Employers need not submit their revised plans to the labor department.

No requirement. However, employers must continue to follow their own COVID-19 Exposure Control Plans as required by the labor department. Any amendment to the employer's previous screening requirements shall be promptly notified to employees. Employers need not submit their revised plans to the labor department.

Rhode Island

No requirement

No requirement

South Carolina

Recommended for restaurant employees. The screening process should include temperature taking.

Recommended for restaurant employees. Employers shall conduct, prior to or at the start of each shift, an employee survey and screening process.

South Dakota

No requirement

Recommended. Employers can ask employees screening questions when they report to work and keep a daily screening log.

Tennessee

No requirement 

Recommended. Screen employees with questions about symptoms.

Texas

No requirement 

NOTE: Some Texas localities may have provisions concerning employee temperature screenings. Please check with your Littler attorney for additional information about your particular jurisdiction.

No requirement 

NOTE: Some Texas localities may have provisions concerning employee health screenings. Please check with your Littler attorney for additional information about your particular jurisdiction.

Utah

Recommended for all employers: screen employees and customers for signs of COVID-19 before they enter the workplace, including temperature checks if feasible.

Recommended for all employers: screen employees and customers for signs of COVID-19 before they enter the workplace, including temperature checks if feasible.

Vermont

No requirement 

Recommended that employers instruct all employees to monitor their symptoms daily.

Virginia

Recommended generally. Employees should also self-monitor their symptoms by self-taking of temperature to check for fever before reporting toork. For employers with established occupational health programs, employers can consider measuring temperature and assessing symptoms of employees prior to starting work/before each shift.

Required for employers at all higher-risk workplaces where there are employees who are not fully vaccinated or otherwise at-risk employees. Prior to the commencement of each work shift, prescreening or surveying shall be required to verify each covered employee does not have signs or symptoms of COVID-19.

Recommended generally. Prior to a shift and on days employees are scheduled to work, employers should screen employees prior to starting work. Employees should also self-monitor their symptoms by self-taking of temperature to check for fever and utilizing the questions provided in the VDH Interim Guidance for COVID-19 Daily Screening of Employees (non-healthcare) before reporting to work. For employers with established occupational health programs, employers can consider measuring temperature and assessing symptoms of employees prior to starting work/before each shift. More information is available here

Washington

No requirement 

No requirement 

NOTE: At least one Washington locality may have provisions concerning employee health screenings. Please check with your Littler attorney for additional information about your particular jurisdiction.

West Virginia

No requirement

No requirement

Wisconsin

No requirement

No requirement

Wyoming

No requirement

No requirement

Information contained in this publication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.