Miami, FL asked in Employment Law for Florida

Q: I work for a store in south Florida. My company is a large clothing retailer. Before the Supreme Court OSHA decision,

we were given an onboard vaccination status section to fill out by January 29. Besides the uploading of card and questions about dates of vaccine and booster for those who have opted to take vaccinations, there is a question for those who have not.

It gives 3 options to answer for why not: 1. medical 2. religious 3. other.

Are we still required by law here in Florida to answer that question? If so, is 'other' acceptable, and can it hurt one's employment status?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Jay P. Lechner Esq.
PREMIUM
Jay P. Lechner Esq.
Answered
  • Tampa, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: Under Fla. Stat. § 381.00317, a private employer may not impose a vaccine mandate unless the employees are allowed to opt out on the basis of 5 separate reasons:

- Medical reasons (including pregnancy & anticipated future pregnancy)

- Religious reasons (including moral or ethical belief)

- COVID19 immunity

- Periodic testing

- The use of employer-provided PPE.

To invoke any of the exemptions, you must submit to your employer a specific form available from the Florida Department of Health website. Any company that does not provide these exemptions or terminates your employment for submitting an exemption form violates the law and may be subject to substantial fines.

To obtain the proper forms, go to the Department of Health website http://www.floridahealth.gov/.

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