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Application of the 10/25/2021 King County Public Health Order to Common Interest Communities

Jan 3, 2022 | Article, Attorneys - General Counsel, Blog, Chapter Happenings Sponsor, Common Interest Communities, Community Associations, COVID-19, Law Updates, Legal, WA State Law

The King County Public Health Officer issued an order on September 16, 2021, effective October 25, 2021. The Local Health Order requires people ages 12 and older to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a recent negative test result to enter certain establishments and events, including but not limited to restaurants and bars, gyms, indoor recreational events or establishments, and outdoor events with 500 or more people.

What Does This Mean For Common Interest Communities?

A question has arisen as to whether the order applies to gyms, restaurants, and meeting rooms within common interest communities. The text of the order is not clear on the scope of its application. It does not make any exception for members-only establishments. It does refer ambiguously in one place to “public” facilities.

Rafel Law Group sought guidance from the King County Public Health Office and was advised that the order is intended to apply only to facilities that are open to the general public. A formal opinion has not been published by King County Public Health but the advice provided to Rafel Law group appears to be authoritative.

Application For Facilities Within Common Interest Communities

Accordingly, gyms, restaurants, and meeting facilities within common interest communities that are open only to members and their guests are not subject to the King County Order. However, to the extent any such facilities within common interest communities are open to the general public, the order applies and must be followed.

This means that the common interest community must require and verify proof of full vaccination or recent (72 hours) approved negative test result in facilities which are not limited to members and their guests.

Facilities that are limited to members and their guests and are therefore not open to the public do not fall within the scope of the order, and common interest communities are not required to verify proof of vaccination or a negative test result for entry to such areas. End Of Article

[Note:] Medical and religious vaccine exemptions are not accepted in lieu of documentation of a negative Covid test.

By Rafel Law Group, PLLC

By Rafel Law Group, PLLC

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