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January 20, 2021

Essential Worker Status May Help Appraisers Get Early Vaccination

The Appraisal Institute on Jan. 20 advised its professionals to check with state and local government agencies where they reside to see if the real estate valuation profession falls into an essential workforce category that will give them early access to a COVID-19 vaccine.
 
Some state and local governments are scheduling vaccinations based on essential workforce categories that were put in place when the stay-at-home orders and other restrictions were initially enacted. Individuals identified as being in an essential workforce category, or as being in a public facing occupation or profession are often placed into a “phase” or “tier” that would give them earlier access to a vaccine.
 
Inclusion in the essential workforce category is what permitted most appraisers to continue providing services while state and local stay-at-home and other restrictions were in place; some areas still have those orders in place. 
 
The “Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce: Ensuring Community and National Resilience in COVID-19 Response Version 4.0,” published by the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, identifies workers who support “residential and commercial real estate services, including settlement services” as well as those supporting “consumer and commercial lending” as being “Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers.”  
 
If a state references the CISA guidance or if it identifies public facing occupations and professions, it is possible that appraisers will have earlier access to a vaccine. Additionally, appraisers should check to see what documentation is required that identifies them as being part of an essential workforce category when scheduling a time to be vaccinated or at the time of vaccination.
 

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