Secretary of State Additional Guidance on Executive Order - IN

March 24, 2020


To:      All Licensed Dealers

RE:      Dealerships Deemed Essential Business


The Indiana Secretary of State—Auto Dealer Services Division (the “Division”) continues to monitor how COVID-19 is impacting dealer operations throughout the state. On March 23, 2020 Governor Eric J. Holcomb issued Executive Order 20-08 directing Indiana residents to stay at home to protect the health, safety and welfare of all Hoosiers.


The Executive Order specified that essential travel includes travel for automobile supplies including travel to dealers. The Executive Order further specified that auto supply and auto-repair are essential businesses/operations as they are needed for transportation.


Indiana dealerships may remain open to the extent they serve these essential needs. In addition to service, there may be a need for dealerships to engage in sales to address the essential need of transportation. Indiana residents and essential personnel need to be able to safely travel for essential activities.


Any dealer that remains open for service and/or sales is still required to follow the social distancing measures outlined in paragraphs 17 and 20 of Executive Order 20-08. Operations should not undermine the overarching goal of the Executive Order to preserve public health and safety. Dealers are encouraged to conduct sales by appointment only and on an as-needed basis. Our office has issued additional guidance on how to conduct more remote sales in this time (see Offsite Sales Guidance).


Businesses should continue to monitor and follow city and county emergency orders that may impact business operations. Many local governments are issuing additional restrictions. Please contact your local government for questions regarding city or county emergency orders.


The Division has observed that some dealerships are closing voluntarily while others are being closed as the result of local emergency declarations.  If your dealership has temporarily closed as a result of COVID-19, please take the following actions:


1.     Contact the Division at to inform us of the temporary closing.  When the dealership re-opens, please again inform the Division that you are continuing operations.


2.     When you temporarily close, please place a sign in the door informing your customers that you are closed.  This will also help Division examiners know that you are temporarily closed because of COVID-19 and not permanently closed.


3.     Contact all buy-here-pay-here customers and provide instructions on how they should make payments while the dealership is closed.   


The Division is committed to working with the dealer community while the state responds to COVID-19.


Indiana Secretary of State Connie Lawson

Auto Dealer Services Division

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