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Michigan Secretary of State limiting branch operations to critical services over 3-week period

Posted at 9:43 AM, Mar 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-14 20:25:39-04

LANSING, Mich. — Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson announced major changes to operations at secretary of state offices over the next three weeks due to the coronavirus.

The operations at all secretary of state offices will be limited to critical service that must be done in person within the next three weeks, according to Benson on Friday.

Also, anyone who must conduct those critical transactions will have to make an appointment and they will no longer allow walk-ins for the next three weeks.

Those transactions are:

– Driver's license renewals
– Title transfers regardless of type
– Testing for an original CDL, Chauffeur's, mechanic and recreational license

The plan is aimed at getting rid of overcrowding at the offices and keeping both the public and SOS workers safe during the coronavirus. Greeters will be at the offices to meet people and offer same-day appointments.

On top of that, Benson is asking anyone who has an appointment not needed critically within the next three weeks to cancel. A REAL ID transaction will still be allowed within this 3-week period.

The SOS offices will also extend hours for appointments from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday. Saturday locations will be closed on Saturdays and branches are closed Friday to reopen on Monday.

Benson is asking people who don't have to come into the office to stay away and utilize services online, by mail and at self-service stations throughout the state.

At the self-service stations, they are also lifting the restriction that requires the demonstration of insurance to renew your license.

Benson said that they realize some people won't be able to get in within the 3 weeks even if they have to. So, Benson said they will waive late fees, and have notified Michigan State Police so they can convey the information to local law enforcement.

According to Benson, they did this and implemented these restrictions so they didn't have to close branch offices.