If you do not wear a face covering when using public transport, when visiting a healthcare premises or, from 24 July, when in a shop or supermarket, staff may approach and ask why you are not wearing one. If you, or the person you care for are unable to wear a face covering because of the reasons listed below then you will not get in trouble but may need to explain that this is the reason why.

  • Find it difficult to put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability
  • Find putting on, wearing or removing a face covering will cause you severe distress
  • Are travelling with or providing assistance to someone who relies on lip reading to communicate
  • All those under 11 don't have to wear a face covering in shops and supermarkets from 24 July.

There is currently no requirement to obtain evidence in the form of a letter from a doctor or government that you are exempt.

If you have a condition which means you cannot wear a face covering you need only advise if asked that you cannot wear a face covering because you are exempt for one of the reasons listed above.You do not need to prove to anyone that you are exempt, but if it would make you feel more confident in public there are many websites offering printable exemption cards or free.