Business Alert

New Hampshire Imposes Restrictions on Non-Essential Services

March 27, 2020

Following the governors in four other New England states in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu issued an executive order Emergency Order 17 (“Order”) directing the physical closure of non-essential businesses and that all residents “stay at home.”  Beginning at 11:59 on March 27 and continuing through 12:01 am on May 4, New Hampshire’s Order permits the operation of essential businesses as defined in the Order.  In identifying and exempting critical infrastructure from compliance, Exhibit A (“Exhibit A”) to the Order relies on guidelines recently issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and previously discussed here, but expressly notes that the federal guidelines have been “amended to reflect the interests of New Hampshire’s citizens and economy.”

Sectors identified in Exhibit A as critical include, among others, law enforcement and public safety, food and agriculture, health care, energy industry, transportation, public works, communications, manufacturing, and defense services.  The Order also includes an exemptions for critical infrastructure personnel necessary to support these services.  Importantly, for those essential services permitted to continue operations, the Order requires essential businesses to “develop strategies, procedures and practices to allow for social distancing protocols consistent with the guidance provided by the CDC and Division of Public Health.”

The Order indicates that it is a “living document” that will be re-disseminated when reviewed and changed.  It also includes a process by which businesses that have not been identified as providing essential services can apply for such a designation.  Additional information regarding the pandemic and operations within New Hampshire are available on the state’s dedicated COVID-19 website

For emergency orders issued in other New England states, see: 

Foley Hoag has formed a firm-wide, multi-disciplinary task force dedicated to client matters related to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). For more guidance on your COVID-19 issues, visit our Resource Page or contact your Foley Hoag attorney.