Governor Whitmer’s “Stay Home, Stay Safe” Executive Order (EO 2020-21) directs all Michigan businesses and entities to temporarily suspend in-person operations that are not necessary to sustain or protect life. In recent weeks, state and local law enforcement officials have begun to enforce the order against both individuals and businesses by showing up at businesses and asking questions and by stopping employees and others in transit and inquiring about the purpose or legitimacy of the person’s travel. Below is a list of best practices to keep in mind if you encounter law enforcement officials.
Designate one employee (“Designated Employee”) at the business to respond to any law enforcement inquiry. The Designated Employee should be available 24/7 in person and/or over the phone.
If law enforcement appears at the place of business or calls, inform the Designated Employee immediately. Wait to speak with law enforcement until the Designated Employee arrives or is reached by phone.
The Designated Employee should ask for the officer’s name, badge number and contact information.
The Designated Employee should not answer any questions. Rather, the Designated Employee should give the officer the name and contact information for the business’s attorney and indicate that the attorney can provide whatever information the officer needs.
If the officer issues a citation (ticket) or indicates they will be referring the matter to the Attorney General’s Office or a local prosecutor for further action, please call your attorney immediately.
For Individuals (Employees)
Law enforcement officers have begun to pull over individuals and ask that person to demonstrate a legitimate purpose for being out and about.
A best practice is to issue letters to employees who are performing minimum basic operations or employees who are critical infrastructure workers indicating their designation.
If you decide not to issue letters to your employees, provide employees with the name and contact information for the Designated Employee whose name and number can be provided to law enforcement officers to verify that the individual pulled over is a critical employee.
If an employee received a citation or is told they will be ticketed or charged, please contact your attorney as soon as possible or contact Warner attorneys:
White Collar Criminal Defense and Investigations Practice Group
Warner’s criminal defense and investigation attorneys lead internal investigations and represent businesses and individuals in numerous state and federal jury trials. They protect businesses, victims, witnesses and the accused and provide preventative services for organizations such as compliance audits and training. Preparing for difficult situations that may involve state and federal authorities can help prevent or minimize events before they become a compliance or criminal problem.