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Executive Order 2020-96 FAQs (No longer effective)

The most up-to-date guidance on these and other mitigation strategies is available at
This matter is rapidly evolving and MDHHS may provide updated guidance.

Executive Order, 2020-96
Temporary requirement to suspend certain activities that are not necessary to sustain or protect life - Rescission of Executive Orders 2020-17, 2020-34, and 2020-92


Q: May campgrounds remain open for public use under Executive Order 2020-96 ? 

A: In general, no. Recreational camping at campgrounds who rent to individuals who otherwise have a primary residence and are traveling to the campground for non-COVID-19-related purposes are not permitted under this order. However, in some limited cases, workers at campgrounds may be critical infrastructure workers to the extent they “provide temporary or permanent housing for… shelter ... for ... otherwise needy individuals.” For purposes of the order, the term “otherwise needy individuals” includes anyone residing in a campground at the time the order was issued or anyone seeking shelter during the current pandemic. They may also remain open to the extent they are used for COVID-19 mitigation and containment efforts and to serve critical infrastructure workers. 

If a licensed campground serves in the above capacity, it may only engage in activities to provide shelter and basic needs. In engaging in those activities, it must limit guest-to-guest, guest-to-staff, and staff-to-staff interactions as much as possible and must adopt all other workplace safeguards required by Executive Order 2020-97. It may not provide additional on-site amenities such as gyms, pools, spas, entertainment facilities, meetings rooms, or like facilities, or provide in-house dining. 


Q: Is bottle return an essential service? 

A: Although bottle return services are often located within grocery and convenience stores, they are not considered critical infrastructure. There will be no change in the deposit collected at the time of purchase during this temporary suspension of bottle return services. 


Q: Does Executive Order 2020-96 prohibit persons from engaging in outdoor activities that are protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution? 

A: No. Persons may engage in expressive activities protected by the First Amendment within the State of Michigan, but must adhere to social distancing measures recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including remaining at least six feet from people from outside the person’s household. 


Q: Does traveling to and attending a religious service in a parking lot of a place of religious worship with congregants remaining in their own vehicles constitute an activity subject to penalty under section 20 of the order?

 A: No.


Q: How does this order impact custody agreements / how does this order impact parents’ visits with their children placed in foster care?

A: Under section 8(b)(4) of the order, individuals may travel as required by law enforcement or a court order, including the transportation of children pursuant to a Friend of the Court custody agreement. Court-ordered parent-child visits related to a child custody arrangement continue, but these visits need not always be in person. Alternatives including telephone and videoconference are acceptable.

Visits between a child and parent while a child resides in foster care should be conducted by telephone and videoconference or other such technology, whenever possible.  Under section 8(a)(12) of the order, travel is permissible to visit a child in out-of-home care, or to facilitate a visit between a parent and a child in out-of-home care, when there is agreement between the child placing agency, the parent, and the caregiver about a safe visitation plan. When agreement cannot be reached by all three parties, exception requests must be approved by the Executive Director of the Children’s Services Agency. In-person visits at a child caring institution need not occur unless a court order requires in-person contact to occur and it can be safely facilitated.



Q: Can law firms, attorney offices and legal aid clinics continue in-person activities or remote activities on legal matters within a law office? 


A: Generally, no. Attorneys are only allowed to work outside the home or meet in-person with clients to extent that they cannot perform the work remotely or cannot comply with their ethical obligations by performing the work remotely.  All work under the order must be performed remotely to the greatest extent possible, and any in-person work must adopt social distancing practices and other mitigation measures to protect workers and patrons, as described in Executive Order 2020-97 and any orders that may follow from it.


Q: Are childcare workers considered critical infrastructure employees?

A: Childcare workers are considered critical infrastructure workers but only to the extent necessary to serve the children or dependents of critical infrastructure workers, workers who conduct minimum basic operations, workers who perform necessary government activities, or workers who perform resumed activities, as defined under the order.  


Q: Does Executive Order 2020-96 restrict the exercise of tribal treaty rights?

 A: No. Executive Order 2020-96  does not restrict activities by tribal members to exercise their federal treaty rights within the boundaries of their treaty territory (also known as “ceded territory”). These activities may be subject to restrictions imposed by tribal authorities.


Q: Are in-person collection activities such as repossession included in the definition of financial services for the purposes of Executive Order 2020-96 ?

A: No.


Q: Are funerals allowed under Executive Order 2020-96?

A: Yes. Under the order people may leave their home to attend a funeral, provided that no more than 10 people are in attendance. This applies to all funeral-related activities.


Q: Are stores prohibited from advertising under Executive Order 2020-96 ?

A: No.


Q: Does in-person work that is essential to sustain or protect human life also include in-person work to prevent severe psychological harm? 

A: Yes.  


Q: Under Executive Order 2020-96, can school districts continue to provide food service for students? 

A: Governor Whitmer is committed to ensuring that Michigan students have access to the food they need during the COVID-19 pandemic. Under the order, K-12 school food services are considered critical infrastructure and should continue. 


Q: Do I need to carry credentials or any paperwork that indicates I’ve been designated a critical infrastructure employee or to travel to and from my home or residence? 

A: No, there is not a requirement under Executive Order 2020-96  to carry credentials or paperwork with you under any circumstance.