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Legal Update Article

Minnesota Limitations on Certain Gatherings, Activities, Establishments Beginning November 21

Minnesota Governor Tim Walz has announced new restrictions on social activities, in-person dining, sports, and fitness establishments for four weeks beginning November 21, 2020. The new restrictions are in response to the state’s high rates of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, intensive care unit admissions, and deaths — which are at the highest levels since the pandemic began.

Beginning November 21 at 11:59 p.m. until December 18 at 11:59 p.m., the following restrictions will be in place:

Social Gatherings: Indoor and outdoor social gatherings, gatherings of groups of individuals outside of the same household, are prohibited. This does not include drive-in gatherings where individuals remain within their own vehicles.

Weddings, Funerals, and Services: Places of worship and other venues that offer weddings, funeral, and similar services may remain open, provided:

  • Social distancing of six feet is maintained between households;
  • Indoor occupancy does not exceed 50%, up to a maximum capacity of 250;
  • Outdoor settings do not exceed a 250-person limit; and
  • The venue develops and implements a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan.

Celebrations and Receptions: Celebrations, receptions, private parties, and other social gatherings are prohibited.

Outdoor Recreational Activity: Outdoor recreational activity, including hiking, golfing, skiing, and skating, is permitted if individuals from different households do not come into close proximity with members from other households. Outdoor recreational facilities are permitted to remain open if they adhere to the relevant industry guidelines.

Travel: Nonessential travel, particularly to other states, is strongly discouraged. Individuals who travel from other states or countries to Minnesota are encouraged to self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

Restaurants and Bars: Restaurants and bars must close for all onsite consumption, including both indoor and outdoor service. These establishments may remain open for take-out and are permitted to allow up to five individuals inside for the purpose of picking up their orders.

Gyms and Fitness Centers: Gyms and fitness centers, including shared or communal facilities open to more than a single household, must close.

Events and Entertainment Venues: Indoor and outdoor event and entertainment venues, including theaters, museums, bowling alleys, racetracks, and fairs, are to close. Outdoor venues may continue to provide drive-in or drive-through experiences, as long as all participants remain within their own vehicles.

Barbershops and Salons: Barbershops and salons are permitted to remain open if occupancy does not exceed 50%, up to a maximum capacity of 250.

Child Care: Licensed childcare providers may continue to operate and serve families.

Organized Sports: Adult and youth organized sports organizations and programs are required to stop all in-person activities.

As required under previous orders, all workers who can work from home must continue to do so. Additionally, employers must ensure they are following all relevant industry guidance and have developed and implemented a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan. Further, employers and businesses are required to post social distancing and hygiene instructions at all entrances and in locations that can be easily seen by customers and visitors.

Reopening orders contain extensive requirements creating compliance issues that can vary significantly depending on the specific state or local jurisdiction. Jackson Lewis attorneys are closely monitoring updates and changes to legal requirements and guidance and are available to help employers weed through the complexities involved with state-specific or multistate-compliant plans.

If you have questions or need assistance, please reach out to the Jackson Lewis attorney with whom you regularly work, or any member of our COVID-19 team.

© Jackson Lewis P.C. This material is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice nor does it create a client-lawyer relationship between Jackson Lewis and any recipient. Recipients should consult with counsel before taking any actions based on the information contained within this material. This material may be considered attorney advertising in some jurisdictions. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. 

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