Employer Coronavirus Testing FAQ’s

May 11, 2020

By: Colin A. Walker

  1. May an employer ask employees if they are experiencing Coronavirus symptoms? Yes.
  2. May an employer test employees for Coronavirus? Yes.
  3. May an employee take employees’ temperatures? Yes.
  4. May an employer send an employee experiencing Coronavirus symptoms home? Yes.
  5. Is there any requirement that employers take their employees’ temperatures? The Amended Colorado Safer at Home Order provides that employers shall implement “symptom monitoring protocols” including “daily temperature checks … to the greatest extent possible, or if not practicable, through employee self-assessment at home prior to coming to the worksite.” However, the Order also provides that Critical and Non-Critical Retailers must “Conduct daily temperature checks and monitor symptoms in employees, logging all results.”
  6. May a prospective employer screen job applicants for Coronavirus symptoms? Yes, but only after making a conditional job offer and only if it screens all entering applicants in the same type of job.
  7. May a prospective employer delay a job applicant’s start date due to Coronavirus symptoms? Yes.
  8. Is there any requirement on the type of Coronavirus test administered by employers? No. However, Guidance from the EEOC states that an employer may need to make reasonable accommodations based on a disability regarding testing.
  9. If an employee tests positive for Coronavirus, may an employer inform the other employees? Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, unless the employee consents, the employer may not reveal the identity of the infected employee, but may inform other employees that a co-worker has tested positive for the virus.
  10. Is it lawful for a business take customers’ temperatures? As long as this is done in a non-discriminatory manner, yes, but customers would have no obligation to submit to having their temperature taken.