Yes, But You Probably Won’t Win

As mask mandates are lifted and society moves forward past Covid-19, questions linger about the rights of customers and employees. Some private businesses stick to their Covid rules and/or begin vaccine requirements. These produce two separate questions about mask mandates and vaccination records, and Jed McKeehan addresses each in this story from Knoxville’s WVLT News.


Private businesses are well within their rights to require customers to continue wearing a mask while in their space. As Jed points out, you can sue them, but you’re ultimately going to waste your time and money with a lawsuit. It’s unlikely any judge will rule against private business owners making rules for their own business.

The other question is about requiring proof of vaccination, whether for customers or employees of a business. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Privacy Rule does not apply to businesses asking about the Covid-19 vaccine. So any lawsuit filed based on this will not succeed. Jed points out that HIPPAA does not apply to vaccinations, as it does to other medical records. It does not prevent employers from requiring proof of vaccination or businesses from requiring it of customers or clients.

For more information about filing a lawsuit, give the attorneys at McKeehan Law Group a call at (865)294-8008.