Bill aims to stop people from selling SOS appointments online

A backlog at SOS branches means appointments are valuable and hard to come by
Posted at 7:04 PM, Jul 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-09 23:00:51-04

WXMI — Secretary of State appointments are still scarce.

Despite a recent addition of roughly 350,000 new appointments at state branches through September, many are still struggling to schedule a convenient time. That has, in part, to do with the practice of people scheduling up appointments only to turn around and sell them online.

“We’ve heard of this being a pretty persistent problem across the state, I’ve talked to other legislators who’ve seen it,” said state Rep. Ranjeev Puri, D – Canton Township. “It’s definitely happening but it is unfortunately hard to quantify.”

To hopefully prevent it from happening at all, Rep. Puri has authored a bill aimed at curbing the practice of selling appointments online. The bill wouldn’t go after the people selling the appointments, but rather the sites that allow them to be sold.

“I’ve seen them on Facebook Marketplace, that’s kind of the big one,” said Rep. Puri. “This would then allow for us to go after Facebook to get rid of these appointments or then face action if they fail to do so.”

The bill would arm the Michigan attorney general with more options for doing so, regardless of who the third-party seller is.

“I applaud people’s ingenuity and entrepreneurial spirit,” said Rep. Puri. “It’s just not a good time to be taking advantage of our fellow Michiganders here.”

Rep. Puri is hopeful that over time, the necessity of the bill will dwindle.

“Hopefully this bill doesn’t need to be taken up and the problems kind of alleviate themselves; appointments open up, people stop selling them,” he said.

To schedule an appointment wit the Secretary of State office, click here or call 888-SOS-MICH.