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Grewal Law, PLLC
(888) 211-5798

On March 23, 2020 Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed into effect Executive Order No. 2020-21.  This Order temporarily requires Michigan residents to suspend all activities that are NOT necessary to sustain or protect life.  In essence, it is a stay-at-home order that only allows you to leave your home if you are doing so pursuant to one of the exceptions.  This article will explain when you are allowed to leave your home, and what could happen if you violate the Order.

Here is a summary of what you CAN do while the stay-at-home order is in effect:

  • Go to the grocery store or pick up take-out food;
  • Go to the pharmacy to pick up a needed prescription;
  • Engage in outdoor activities like walking, hiking, running, biking;
  • Go to the hospital or secure any care necessary to address a medical emergency or to preserve your health or the health of a loved one;
  • Fill your car with gas;
  • Return to Michigan to a home or place of residence from outside the State;
  • Leave the State for a home or residence elsewhere;
  • Travel between two residences in the state;
  • Walk your pets and take them to the veterinarian for needed medical care;
  • Comply with a court order, including transportation of children pursuant to a custody agreement (To find out more information on this topic, click here); and,
  • Go to work, but only if you are part of the critical infrastructure or are one of the limited employees necessary to conduct minimum basic operations.  (To find out more information on this topic, click here).

For a summary of what not to do, please visit Michigan’s coronavirus website, here. In short, the Governor is ordering you to stay home unless you are performing one of the above-listed activities, or unless you are a worker cleared to be physically present at work.

Now that you know what you can and cannot do, here is what could happen if you are caught violating the Order.  Pursuant to Section 14, a willful violation of the Order will result in a criminal misdemeanor.  Section 14 cites to MCL 10.33 and MCL 30.405(3), which state, respectively:

EMERGENCY POWERS OF GOVERNOR (EXCERPT)
Act 302 of 1945

10.33 Violation; misdemeanor.

Sec. 3.

The violation of any such orders, rules and regulations made in conformity with this act shall be punishable as a misdemeanor, where such order, rule or regulation states that the violation thereof shall constitute a misdemeanor.

– – – – –

EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT ACT (EXCERPT) Act 390 of 1976

(3) A person who willfully disobeys or interferes with the implementation of a rule, order, or directive issued by the governor pursuant to this section is guilty of a misdemeanor.

In other words, you do not just face a civil infraction and/or fine if you are caught violating Order 2020-21 – you face being criminally charged.  If you have any questions, please contact our office at (616) 259-8463 or via email at dbarnett@4grewal.com.

148 Comments

  1. Gravatar for Jason whitcomb
    Jason whitcomb

    I do collision repair for a chevy dealership and was told this is essential! Don't really understand how or if this is true.

    1. Gravatar for Tammy
      Tammy

      Following. I too work at body shop

      1. Gravatar for Benjamin
        Benjamin

        You remain open in the event that someone needs their car fixed. Many michigan families rely on a single car for transportation. If that car has a problem that must be fixed, they will be unable to get food, go to a hospital, attend their jobs(if necessary) or get to someone they are supposed to be taking care of. Also, if they have a pet, they cannot take them to the vet. Since having a working vehicle is so important, the people who repair said vehicles are also.

        1. Gravatar for Laura
          Laura

          What about the employees that don’t fix the vehicles like salesmen. Are they allowed to stay home without repercussions?

          1. Gravatar for Lynn
            Lynn

            It was specifically stated that sales are not to remain open, only service & repair.

          2. Gravatar for Gary
            Gary

            The sales portion of dealerships are to be closed.

          3. Gravatar for Undrstm8ed
            Undrstm8ed

            Right, cause the 17 yr old kid in the drive thru at Wendys down the roads job was deemed "more essential" than having to show up for real job/career in order to pay the near $900 in child support I have to cover that ISNT STOPPED by the state in accrual of interest, fees, and or without being sent to arrears furthering all of the above even deeper.. MY and other's like me, OUR children are a "critical infrastructure", and $1200 I can't get because I am behind in arrears doesn't help me at all.

            My 2nd right in this country is to protect myself, because the State has deemed itself not only incapable of doing so, but because since 1856, not one but all of the Supreme courts has ruled that not only does the police have NO STATUTORY DUTY to protect its citizenry, but the State wont. THIS is why you have a hard time or can't sue a State agency for NOT protecting you. That's MY and everyone else's job! those believing otherwise have the be-lie-f differently and are ignorant of their rights.

            Also I'd like to add the 11th amendment doesn't protect these people in the so called justice system or the politicians. Come give me ticket, in fact I'll take two and i'll hold each PERSON involved personally liable and have their heads spinning in a federal court.

        2. Gravatar for Megan Hughes
          Megan Hughes

          My sister is looking for an open place to fix her vechile. May i ask which county your are out of ? If it is n the Marquette area may i have the name of thr place you work?

    2. Gravatar for B
      B

      The department of homeland security deemed auto repair businesses as essential services. Personally I am an Auto Tech and we service State Police vehicles, hospital vehicles, and other vehicles used for critical services so our business is pretty necessary. I would assume you are remaining open for the same reasons. Hope that puts it into perspective for you.

      1. Gravatar for Jason
        Jason

        We do not service these vehicles.

        1. Gravatar for B
          B

          That may be true, but you may be repairing vehicles owned by first responders, nurses, doctors, and many other professions that are considered critical. Fact is, you're fortunate to still be working in these trying times, many people aren't so lucky.

          1. Gravatar for Tyler
            Tyler

            What about a venier plant . Business name is besse forest products. All we work with is venier .they said we are essential and still open but I just dont undertow. Thank you for input

        2. Gravatar for Dick
          Dick

          If they get wrecked you do

    3. Gravatar for Angie
      Angie

      I have a Chevy trax love it

      1. Gravatar for Valarie gulde
        Valarie gulde

        Angie, that's cool. I have a ford escape. It's a better value.

    4. Gravatar for Melinda Kriebel
      Melinda Kriebel

      I would think only repair for those that are essential workers like doctors, nurses etc.

    5. Daniel Barnett

      Yes, the MEMORANDUM ON IDENTIFICATION OF ESSENTIAL CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE WORKERS DURING COVID-19 RESPONSE states that "automotive repair and maintenance facilities" are critical infrastructure.

    6. Gravatar for Joe
      Joe

      The "State" (a legal fiction) through its administrators cannot "order" People to do anything without due process or just compensation. If you want to fulfill Gov Whitmer's "order" I suggest you send her your bill!

      There is no provision in American law i.e. the American Constitution, which gives government the power to interfere with our daily lives. We the People are "Free" to pursue live, liberty and possess property as long as in that pursuit we do not willfully (with a guilty mind) violate the rights of another.

      Through a lack of proper education, we the people (on mass) no longer know what our founding fathers bequeathed us and what millions of Americans have died to defend. We have forgotten who is the master and who the servant. Because of that lack of knowledge, we have a constitution that is essential circumvented for profit by way of a carnival like trickery know as "legal language".

      So, is anyone subject to this order? Yes, all "persons" and "individuals" "in" the state are subject to this order. My guess is most of you do not know what a "person" or "individual" is in a legal context and you do not know the legal difference between "in" and "at".

      You may choose stay at home if you wish, I choose to stay free!

      1. Gravatar for mass killer
        mass killer

        word. this is the only correct answer here. this entire executive order is probably illegal and unconstitutional, but who cares, amirite?

      2. Gravatar for Undrstm8ed
        Undrstm8ed

        Where is the like button?!

      3. Gravatar for Anne
        Anne

        Well said! Thank you for that.

  2. Gravatar for John Begoske
    John Begoske

    The order states walking, hiking and biking are allowed. What about fishing?

    1. Gravatar for Bill Sikkenga
      Bill Sikkenga

      Per the Michigan DNR, fishing will still be allowed during this time. They stated that on their Facebook page today, after the Governor made her announcement.

      1. Daniel Barnett

        You can also find more information here. https://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,4570,7-350-79137_79770_98458-522730--,00.html

      2. Gravatar for Chris
        Chris

        I am a little confused. I work in a seasonal town and have a small business. So I can get in my car and go fishing, but I cannot go to my office (has been closed since October and doesn’t open til June) and am the only one in the office?

        1. Gravatar for Terijolc
          Terijolc

          Just do it and don’t make it a big deal. Think the cops are driving around checking out office buildings?

      3. Gravatar for Mary
        Mary

        How about landscaping outside.

        1. Daniel Barnett

          Mary:

          Thank you for reading my article. To start off I want to say that my comments are to be taken generally only. This order is very ambiguous and unrefined, and I cannot guarantee what a court or law enforcement agency will do. These are unprecedented times and this is an unprecedented order. So please do not take my comments as anything more than an educated interpretation/guess on the overall implications of the order. Also, no attorney/client relationship is intended from this post.

          Having said that, the order states: “No person or entity shall operate a business or conduct operations that require workers to leave their homes or places of residence except to the extent that those workers are necessary to sustain or protect life or to conduct minimum basic operations.” This lists two exceptions, to sustain or protect life or to conduct minimum basic operations. I don’t see landscaping services falling into necessary to sustain or protect life. As far as the “necessary to conduct minimum basic operations,” the order defines that as: “For purposes of this order, workers who are necessary to conduct minimum basic operations are those whose in-person presence is strictly necessary to allow the business or operation to maintain the value of inventory and equipment, care for animals, ensure security, process transactions (including payroll and employee benefits), or facilitate the ability of other workers to work remotely.” So, unless the landscaping company is having an employee work on inventory or payroll, I don't see it falling into that category, either.

          If you are just talking about personal landscaping outside, that seems to be covered under Section 7(a)(1) because it is not a business activity. Also, here is an article from Mlive that might be helpful. Hope this helps.

          https://www.mlive.com/public-interest/2020/03/how-to-report-if-your-non-essential-workplace-is-still-open-during-michigans-coronavirus-stay-home-order.html

          1. Gravatar for Larry
            Larry

            The definition of an Executive order is quite clear in who it can cover. IMHO Executive Orders are way too over used by all branches of our government. That being said, anyone in their right mind would be loathe to not follow Gretchen Whitmers STRONG RECOMMENDATION TO STAY HOME, during this onerous time in world history.

          2. Gravatar for mass killer
            mass killer

            this is correct. see https://casetext.com/statute/michigan-compiled-laws/chapter-10-governor/emergency-powers-of-governor/section-1031-proclamation-of-state-of-emergency-promulgation-of-orders-rules-and-regulations-seizure-of-firearms-ammunition-or-other-weapons

    2. Gravatar for Scott Byer
      Scott Byer

      I agree. What about riding my side by side near Houghton Lake on the ORV routes? You can bike, hike, walk, run, and walk your dog. All this is just too vague and some do not make sense.

      1. Gravatar for Teri
        Teri

        Seriously you are worrying about this right now? The orders CAN’T POSSIBLY cover every angle of every activity and every job. Just work with it dude. So one person asks about his side by side, the next about his razor, the next about his quad, the next about his quad on the side of the road, the next about his skateboard on the road.... Jesus Christ. Some people have real problems.

    3. Gravatar for Cody
      Cody

      Hey man, I say as long as you aren't fishing with 6 feet of someone or in a group of more than 10, you got a strong case for it being ok.

      1. Gravatar for Andrew
        Andrew

        No groups if 10 or less anymore.

    4. Gravatar for Amy B
      Amy B

      I think outdoor fresh air not group events are encouraged and those are just some examples. It doesn't matter if you rollerblade or jog or fish or bike as long as you are getting fresh air.

    5. Gravatar for Lynne Stroebel
      Lynne Stroebel

      I was wondering about fishing as well, especially if travel is needed to get to a lake.

    6. Gravatar for Jason Bisson
      Jason Bisson

      Fishing is legal. They just ask that you observe the 6' radius rule. That is directly from the Michigan DNR.

    7. Gravatar for Heather
      Heather

      Yes you can fish... the DNR posted that you can still fish just stay 6 ft from other people who are fishing

    8. Gravatar for Michael Freeman
      Michael Freeman

      Want to know about going fishing

    9. Gravatar for RuntPacket
      RuntPacket

      or boating?

      1. Gravatar for Toni Thomas
        Toni Thomas

        Is boating really a necessity for your life right now? They are encouraging people to stay home so unless you have a private lake I would say that’s a no.

    10. Gravatar for Andrew
      Andrew

      This is the misconception everyone has about laws. When a law says you can do something, it does not automatically ban all other activities. A prime example is that Michigan does not have a law banning open carry of a firearm; therefore, it is legal to carry a firearm.

      People need to change the way they think about government. Go fishing unless they tell you you can’t.

      1. Gravatar for mass killer
        mass killer

        correct! or hide in your house until you think it's legal again, or to the people who are too scared, maybe just quit breathing, it might be illegal, just in case...

  3. Gravatar for Evidel
    Evidel

    I restore equipment. Is this essential? I was called to go work and I don’t know if I should go.

    1. Daniel Barnett

      Good Morning. Thank you for reading my article. If you want to email me more specific information about your job, I will be happy to attempt to help. Please understand, the order is very poorly written, so any advice I give will only be general, and I will not likely be able to say anything with certainty. My email is dbarnett@4grewal.com

      1. Gravatar for Linda Elzinga
        Linda Elzinga

        My husband is a tax accountant. He meets with clients in our home.

        Is the governor going to follow the federal government, and delay the filing AND date to pay?

        Delaying the filing date doesn’t help unless there is a delay in payment.

        I will look forward to your reply.

        1. Gravatar for Ali Ziehm
          Ali Ziehm

          Tax deadline for 2019 tax year has been extended to July 15, 2020 per the IRS website: irs.gov

          1. Gravatar for Mary
            Mary

            I am self employed and prepare taxes. Is this considered a financial necessity and am I able to still prepare taxes if I limit my person to person contact?

          2. Gravatar for Laurie
            Laurie

            I am also a tax preparer and I am wondering if we are essential also. To my knowledge MI has not extended the deadline yet.

          3. Gravatar for Carrie
            Carrie

            I am also a tax preparer and haven't seen anything about MI, or any other state, extending their deadline but I believe it falls under the states following the federal guidelines.

          4. Daniel Barnett

            Mary:

            Thank you for reading my article. To start off I want to say that my comments are to be taken generally only. This order is very ambiguous and unrefined, and I cannot guarantee what a court or law enforcement agency will do. These are unprecedented times and this is an unprecedented order. So please do not take my comments as anything more than an educated interpretation/guess on the overall implications of the order. Also, no attorney/client relationship is intended from this post.

            If I understand what you are asking, the exception you are referring to is Section 8(l), which is the exception for financial services as critical infrastructure workers. I do not think tax preparation would apply, as that is not essential before the end of the order. My understanding is that exception applies to banks, credit unions, etc. Again, this is very poorly worded and vague, so I can't give you a definitive answer, just my best educated guess.

            Now, if you work from home and have electronic communication only with you clients, I think that would not be subject to the order, but again, that's my educated guess. Here is a link to Michigan.gov's FAQs in case they update it to address this. Hope this helps.

            https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus/0,9753,7-406-98178_98455-522631--,00.html

          5. Gravatar for Karen
            Karen

            Can we just go and take a long ride within our own car. If we don't get out if our vehicle. .I think this would help people with cabin fever.

      2. Gravatar for Viola mickelson
        Viola mickelson

        Befor this all started... My landlords wanted theit house back . hud stopped payment to them mar.3. Made arangments to have everthing to move apr. 28th to new place. The friends and my son need to know if they can still come to move me apr. 28th to new place.my family comming to move me are 3 hrs. Away and have to travel here to get it done. If i cant .move can landlord keep my deposit cause i cant move now because of govs. Shelter in place. It was not an eviction. Just bad timiming now because of what happing.

        1. Gravatar for Charles Burnette
          Charles Burnette

          You sound like you lyin.

  4. Gravatar for Kim
    Kim

    Does this include residential and commercial janitorial services??

    1. Daniel Barnett

      Good Morning, Kim:

      Thank you for reading my article. To start off I want to say that my comments are to be taken generally only. This order is very ambiguous and unrefined, and I cannot guarantee what a court or law enforcement agency will do. These are unprecedented times and this is an unprecedented order. So please do not take my comments as anything more than an educated interpretation/guess on the overall implications of the order.

      Having said that, the order states: "No person or entity shall operate a business or conduct operations that require workers to leave their homes or places of residence except to the extent that those workers are necessary to sustain or protect life or to conduct minimum basic operations." This lists two exceptions, to sustain or protect life or to conduct minimum basic operations. I don't see residential and commercial janitorial services falling into necessary to sustain or protect life. As far as the "necessary to conduct minimum basic operations," the order defines that as: "For purposes of this order, workers who are necessary to conduct minimum basic operations are those whose in-person presence is strictly necessary to allow the business or operation to maintain the value of inventory and equipment, care for animals, ensure security, process transactions (including payroll and employee benefits), or facilitate the ability of other workers to work remotely."

      UPDATE: Another exception that may be possible is workers "who provide services that are necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences. Information pertaining to this can be found at Michigan.gov/coronavirus. Again, please understand this is only general advice, and I do not know what a court or law enforcement officer would do. I hope this helps.

  5. Gravatar for Denise
    Denise

    How about taking care of your elderly mother and doing chores as as I have animals that are 3 miles away

    1. Daniel Barnett

      Good Morning, Denise:

      Thank you for reading my article. Section 7(a)(8) of the order states that you are able to travel: (8) To care for minors, dependents, the elderly, persons with disabilities, or other vulnerable persons. Section 7(a)(7) allows you "to care for a family member or a family member’s pet in another household." Section 7(b)(3) allows you to travel between two of your residences in the state. Please understand these are general answers only, and I do now know what a court or law enforcement officer would do, as the order is very ambiguous. Thank you,

    2. Gravatar for Teri
      Teri

      OMG! Do you people read!!

  6. Gravatar for Diana
    Diana

    So I'm suppose to pick up my last paycheck from my employer they do not offer direct deposit so is this considered an okay thing to do??

  7. Gravatar for Carl
    Carl

    I will not comply.

    1. Gravatar for Kathleen
      Kathleen

      That is most just plain dumb comment ever. Do you believe you cannot get it? Or take it to family. You are a danger to yourself and others.

      1. Gravatar for Stephanie
        Stephanie

        It’s no worse than the flu! Hmmm taking away BASIC liberties? Everyone has the right to provide for their family! If you don’t want to get sick stay home! Quarantine those who want to be quarantined. Leave the rest of us and our liberties alone!!! 12000-60000 people die of the Flu per Year! That’s just in the US!! 140,000 to 810,000 cases needing hospitalizations per year!!! 4,000,000- 9,000,000 come down with the flu per year!! This is rediculous to shut down our ability to provide for our families and destroy the economy. Are we going to shut down now every winter?

        1. Gravatar for mass killer
          mass killer

          https://twitter.com/rmayemsinger/status/1246531751775580161

  8. Gravatar for Scott
    Scott

    Does this sound like Freedom ? Liberty ? Individual Sovereignty ?? Nope, it’s a police state.... is our governor a communist dictator ?? Yep, she sure is.... or thinks she is. This whole situation has nothing to with a virus. It has all to go with destroying a great nations economy and is simply an attack on Donald Trump via the people. This order is a disgusting violation of the people’s Rights and Liberties. The Democratic Party NAZI’s are very dangerous people. Willing to destroy our nation to gain and maintain power. The whole thing is disgusting and dangerous.

    1. Gravatar for alex
      alex

      Sorry, I couldn't stop shaking my head after reading this ignorant post.

      You can do what you want, but not at the expense of the health of the rest of us.

      Stop acting so selfish.

      Thank you.

      1. Gravatar for Rob Huckfeldt
        Rob Huckfeldt

        Don't forget to 'Sieg Heil' salute when asked for your travel papers.

        1. Gravatar for alex
          alex

          I feel sorry for you.

    2. Gravatar for Phil
      Phil

      Scott, I somewhat agree with you, while I dont believe we are in a police state......yet, I do believe this was something the media grabbed a hold of during sweeps month, and it got away from them. Now other countries are seeing us go into an outright panic and thinking maybe theres something to this, and the democrats after a failed impeachment attempt to remove Trump, jumped on the band wagon and are using this to destroy the economy and in turn hopefully (they not me) destroy Trumps chance of reelection. A lot of thinking people are starting to question if the economic damage this is causing is justified over a few thousand lives (not that every life isnt valuable.) As spock said in star trek 2, sometimes the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few (or the one)

      1. Gravatar for alex
        alex

        Yes, just a few thousand lives.

        I wonder if you would put such a low value on those lives if they were you or one of your family?

        1. Gravatar for Ron
          Ron

          The Dems say that pregnancy is a disease...should we close all abortion clinics

    3. Gravatar for Farmer
      Farmer

      Thoroughly agree with you Scott. Let's see how things pan out in the next elections for mayors and governors. My guess is the demonrat voters have been drinking the koolaid for so long that they are brain dead. A lot like Alex.

  9. Gravatar for Frank
    Frank

    This order by the gov is very poorly written. You can still do all your normal outdoor activities as long as you are not participating in a public gathering.

  10. Gravatar for Alicia
    Alicia

    How is a stay at home order going to work while most everything is still open? Around grand rapids, everything that was open before is still open. Hmmm. I think it is a joke. If things are going to get better. Everyone except, medical and emergency crews should be AT HOME. Millions are still going to be affected at this rate. At most grocery stores with limited people in rhe store at a time. This would give workers time to wash their hands between customers.

    1. Gravatar for Loella
      Loella

      I have been thinking the same thing. They have things open so they can support emergency workers and food industry but auot repair etc could be done by appt for specific personnel and food shopping should be by designation of a specific day sorted by first letter of our last name or something. People are running in and out of markets daily and sometimes several times a day and think its ok because they need food. Its ridiculous

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