GREENSBORO, N.C. — Private businesses make their own rules. They can refuse to take credit cards and only take cash. They can refuse to serve you if you’re not dressed appropriately. Remember no shirt, no shoes, no service?
If they have a sign-up that alerts you to the requirement you need to wear a mask to be serviced, even without a mandate, it is their right to do so.
It's your right to shop and eat there or not and take your business elsewhere.
Even though masks are not required, businesses can ask you to wear a mask before you enter their property. Businesses such as grocery stores and other retail establishments are considered private property. When you enter private property, the owner of the property can require you to do certain things. This includes wearing a mask.
There are common reasons businesses can legally refuse service:
- Customers who are there to be serviced outside of business hours
- Customers who are rowdy or disruptive behavior
- Customers who are violating rules such as dress code
- Customers who are threats to the health and safety of workers
- Customers how are breaking lawful rules of the business (example: no pets allowed)
The right to refuse service is limited by federal, state, and local laws.
For instance, a business may not refuse service to a customer because of their race, religion, national origin, disability, or sexual orientation.
In past WFMY News 2 interviews, Employment & Work Attorney, L. Nicole Patino said, "If you have a disability and cannot wear a mask, they cannot ask you to provide paperwork showing you have the disability."
Just to be clear, a business can refuse to serve you if the business is requiring you to wear one.