COVID-19  (as of 3/31/20)

 

PAA is providing the following information related to Coronavirus (COVID19) in the workplace and directives from Pennsylvania’s Department of Health and Governor Tom Wolf.

Information is being updated by the hour. We know that you join us in monitoring news outlets and the information provided by NADA at www.nada.org/coronavirus/resources.  We would also direct you to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), as well as advise you to follow statewide and local government recommendations.  

 

PAA will also be publishing updated information on our website, including frequently asked questions received by dealerships. 

If you have questions regarding your dealership’s situation, please call

PAA at 717-255-8311 or email info@paa.org.

* PAA continues its efforts, with the assistance of the General Assembly, to provide for an industry wide waiver for dealers to sell vehicles to customers in need during this difficult time. Service and repair shops may remain open, even in those counties where ‘shelter in place’ orders have been given.

Dealerships Across Pennsylvania (as of March 19)

 

Governor Orders Dealership Sales Operations to Cease at 8 p.m.  Service, Repair, and Parts may remain open.

   

On March 19, 2020, Governor Wolf announced that all non-life sustaining businesses in Pennsylvania are to close their physical locations beginning at 8 pm on March 19, 2020 to slow the spread of the Coronavirus. This new announcement supersedes the prior designation of essential/non-essential businesses.

A detailed list of business that “may/may not continue physical operation” was provided and is available at:

https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/6815335-20200319-Life-Sustaining-Business.html#document/p1

 

Are Dealerships a non-life sustaining business?

At this time:

Service/Body Shop/Parts -- Automotive Repair/Maintenance as well as Parts are listed as “May Continue Physical Operations” (page 5).

Sales -- Automobile dealers/other Motor Vehicle Dealers are listed as may not continue physical operations (page 3). We are looking to get further clarification regarding internet sales and delivery.

 

For truck dealers -- transportation, service, and parts is still permissible.  Sales may not continue physical operations (page 3).

 

Failure to comply with these requirements will result in enforcement action that could include citations, fines, or license suspensions. 

 

PAA is working with the Governor’s administration and the General Assembly to advocate the necessity of permitting motor vehicle sales at a dealership at this time to support the communities’ needs.  Additional information will be provided as it becomes available.

If you have any questions, please contact PAA

PennDOT Offices Closed 

All inventory orders (ie, inspection stickers, MV-1/MV-4ST, Temp Plates) will not be filled until PennDOT reopens.

 

If your dealership runs out of MV-1/MV-4St, real time processing through an online provider (such as Dealertrack) can occur which eliminates the need for paper processing.  In addition, dealers not online can utilize a messenger service for processing titlework.

 

Currently, PAA’s Harrisburg and Philadelphia offices are closed and not issuing dealer plates.

Department of State Closed

Department of State has closed their offices for salesman and dealer licensing.

Dealership Employees’ Work Schedules, Compensation

As you attempt to prepare for disruption at your dealership from the Coronavirus, especially in properly managing exempt/salary and non-exempt/hourly employees:

  • If a dealership employee notifies you that he/she has been diagnosed with Coronavirus, you should immediately contact your local health department and the state department of public health to find out what you should do. You should then tell all dealership employees that they may have been exposed, but you must keep the infected employee’s identity confidential. 

  • You must pay hourly/non-exempt employees only for the actual hours that they work. If an salary/exempt employee, you do not have to pay them if the dealership is closed for an entire work week and the employee performs no work (at home or at the dealership).

  • If the dealership decides to allow exempt employees to work from home while the dealership is closed, or if the dealership is closed for less than a week, exempt employees who work any time during such week must be paid their regular weekly salary. If you do not want your employees to work while at home, you may wish to tell your employees not to work. 

  • If you are going to allow hourly/non-exempt or salary/exempt employees to work from home while the dealership is closed, you should require them to keep accurate records of their hours worked and tasks completed.

 

If you have additional questions, contact your legal adviser or feel free to contact PAA for additional assistance.

 

Unemployment Compensation information from Pennsylvania is available at:  https://www.uc.pa.gov/Pages/covid19.aspx

 

Dealers across the state should implement measures to secure the safety of your employees, customers and vendors. Common sense things like washing hands with soap and water, providing access to hand sanitizers, disinfecting public surface areas, door handles, etc., are a good start. 

At the Dealership:

Dealerships can enact proper protocols to reduce the possibility of people getting sick from the Coronavirus.  

Below are some steps dealers can take now to try to ensure the health and safety of your staff to prevent illness:

  • Encourage employees to report travel plans;

  • Encourage employees to wash with soap and water or sanitize hands frequently; 

  • Make hand sanitizer and boxes of tissues available throughout the dealership; 

  • Keep anti-bacterial wipes around and frequently wipe down the interior of vehicles in the showroom and demos before/after test drives; 

  • Treat customer cars that come in for service the same way - disinfect them before your technicians diagnose and repair these vehicles; 

  • Suggest that, for now, employees may wish to avoid shaking hands; 

  • Require your cleaning companies to treat all work surfaces, including phones, computers, floors, and restrooms, with proper disinfectants; 

  • Discourage employees from using other employees’ phones, desks, offices, or other work tools and equipment; 

  • Minimize situations where people are crowded together, like meetings. Use e-mail, phones, and text messages to communicate with each other. When meetings are necessary, avoid close contact by keeping a separation of at least six feet, where possible, and assure that meeting rooms are well-ventilated; and 

  • Allow employees to work from home when possible;

  • Encourage all sick employees and anyone with a fever to stay home.

 

Frequently Asked Questions: