144.4195 DUE PROCESS FOR ISOLATION OR QUARANTINE OF PERSONS.
Subdivision 1. Ex parte order for isolation or quarantine.
(a) Before isolating or
quarantining a person or group of persons, the commissioner of health shall obtain a written, ex
parte order authorizing the isolation or quarantine from the District Court of Ramsey County, the
county where the person or group of persons is located, or a county adjoining the county where
the person or group of persons is located. The evidence or testimony in support of an application
may be made or taken by telephone, facsimile transmission, video equipment, or other electronic
communication. The court shall grant the order upon a finding that probable cause exists to
believe isolation or quarantine is warranted to protect the public health.
(b) The order must state the specific facts justifying isolation or quarantine, must state that
the person being isolated or quarantined has a right to a court hearing under this section and a
right to be represented by counsel during any proceeding under this section, and must be provided
immediately to each person isolated or quarantined. The commissioner of health shall provide a
copy of the authorizing order to the commissioner of public safety and other peace officers known
to the commissioner to have jurisdiction over the site of the isolation or quarantine. If feasible, the
commissioner of health shall give each person being isolated or quarantined an estimate of the
expected period of the person's isolation or quarantine.
(c) If it is impracticable to provide individual orders to a group of persons isolated or
quarantined, one order shall suffice to isolate or quarantine a group of persons believed to have
been commonly infected with or exposed to a communicable disease. A copy of the order and
notice shall be posted in a conspicuous place:
(1) in the isolation or quarantine premises, but only if the persons to be isolated or
quarantined are already at the isolation or quarantine premises and have adequate access to
the order posted there; or
(2) in another location where the group of persons to be isolated or quarantined is located,
such that the persons have adequate access to the order posted there.
If the court determines that posting the order according to clause (1) or (2) is impractical due to
the number of persons to be isolated or quarantined or the geographical area affected, the court
must use the best means available to ensure that the affected persons are fully informed of the
order and notice.
(d) Any peace officer, as defined in section
144.4803, subdivision 16
, may use force as
described by sections
to apprehend, hold, transport, quarantine, or isolate a
person subject to the order if the person flees or forcibly resists the officer. This subdivision is
authority to carry out enforcement duties under this section. The commissioner or an agent of a
local board of health authorized under section
shall advise the peace officer on request
of protective measures recommended to protect the officer from possible transmission of the
communicable disease. The peace officer may act upon telephone, facsimile, or other electronic
notification of the order from the court, commissioner of health, agent of a local board of health,
or commissioner of public safety. This paragraph expires August 1, 2009.
(e) No person may be isolated or quarantined pursuant to an order issued under this
subdivision for longer than 21 days without a court hearing under subdivision 3 to determine
whether isolation or quarantine should continue. A person who is isolated or quarantined may
request a court hearing under subdivision 3 at any time before the expiration of the order.
Subd. 2. Temporary hold upon commissioner's directive.
(a) Notwithstanding subdivision
1, the commissioner of health may by directive isolate or quarantine a person or group of
persons without first obtaining a written, ex parte order from the court if a delay in isolating or
quarantining the person or group of persons would significantly jeopardize the commissioner
of health's ability to prevent or limit the transmission of a communicable or potentially
communicable life-threatening disease to others. The directive shall specify the known period of
incubation or communicability or the estimated period under the commissioner's best medical
judgment when the disease is unknown. The directive remains in effect for the period specified
unless amended by the commissioner or superseded by a court order. The commissioner must
provide the person or group of persons subject to the temporary hold with notice that the person
has a right to request a court hearing under this section and a right to be represented by counsel
during a proceeding under this section. If it is impracticable to provide individual notice to each
person subject to the temporary hold, notice of these rights may be posted in the same manner as
the posting of orders under subdivision 1, paragraph (c). Immediately upon executing the directive
and initiating notice of the parties subject to it, the commissioner shall initiate the process to apply
for a written, ex parte order pursuant to subdivision 1 authorizing the isolation or quarantine. The
court must rule within 24 hours of receipt of the application or sooner if practicable or necessary.
If the person is under a temporary hold, the person may not be held in isolation or quarantine after
the temporary hold expires unless the court issues an ex parte order under subdivision 1. If the
court does not rule within 36 hours after the execution of the directive, the directive shall expire.
(b) At the same time the commissioner initiates the process to apply for a written, ex parte
order under paragraph (a), the commissioner shall notify the governor, the majority and minority
leaders of the senate, the speaker and majority and minority leaders of the house, and the chairs
and the ranking minority members of the senate and house committees having jurisdiction over
health policy that a directive for a temporary hold has been issued under this subdivision. Notice
under this paragraph is governed by the data privacy provisions of subdivision 6.
(c) Any peace officer, as defined in section
144.4803, subdivision 16
, may assist a public
health official to apprehend, hold, transport, quarantine, or isolate a person subject to the
commissioner's directive. The peace officer may use force as described by sections
. The commissioner or an agent of a local board of health authorized under section
shall advise the peace officer on request of protective measures recommended to protect
the officer from possible transmission of the communicable disease. The peace officer may act
upon telephone, facsimile, or other electronic notification of the commissioner's directive or upon
the request of an agent of a local board of health.
(d) If a person subject to a commissioner's directive under paragraph (a) is already
institutionalized in an appropriate health care facility, the commissioner of health may direct the
facility to continue to hold the person. The facility shall take all reasonable measures to prevent
the person from exposing others to the communicable disease.
(e) This subdivision expires August 1, 2009.
Subd. 3. Court hearing.
(a) A person isolated or quarantined under an order issued pursuant
to subdivision 1 or a temporary hold under subdivision 2 or the person's representative may
petition the court to contest the court order or temporary hold at any time prior to the expiration
of the order or temporary hold. If a petition is filed, the court must hold a hearing within 72
hours from the date of the filing. A petition for a hearing does not stay the order of isolation
or quarantine. At the hearing, the commissioner of health must show by clear and convincing
evidence that the isolation or quarantine is warranted to protect the public health.
(b) If the commissioner of health wishes to extend the order for isolation or quarantine past
the period of time stated in subdivision 1, paragraph (d), the commissioner must petition the court
to do so. Notice of the hearing must be served upon the person or persons who are being isolated
or quarantined at least three days before the hearing. If it is impracticable to provide individual
notice to large groups who are isolated or quarantined, a copy of the notice may be posted in the
same manner as described under subdivision 1, paragraph (c).
(c) The notice must contain the following information:
(1) the time, date, and place of the hearing;
(2) the grounds and underlying facts upon which continued isolation or quarantine is sought;
(3) the person's right to appear at the hearing; and
(4) the person's right to counsel, including the right, if indigent, to be represented by counsel
designated by the court or county of venue.
(d) The court may order the continued isolation or quarantine of the person or group of
persons if it finds by clear and convincing evidence that the person or persons would pose an
imminent health threat to others if isolation or quarantine was lifted. In no case may the isolation
or quarantine continue longer than 30 days from the date of the court order issued under this
subdivision unless the commissioner petitions the court for an extension. Any hearing to extend
an order is governed by this subdivision.
Subd. 4. Hearing on conditions of isolation or quarantine.
A person isolated or
quarantined may request a hearing in district court for remedies regarding the treatment during
and the terms and conditions of isolation or quarantine. Upon receiving a request for a hearing
under this subdivision, the court shall fix a date for a hearing that is within seven days of the
receipt of the request by the court. The request for a hearing does not alter the order for isolation or
quarantine. If the court finds that the isolation or quarantine of the individual is not in compliance
, the court may fashion remedies appropriate to the circumstances of the
emergency and in keeping with this chapter.
Subd. 5. Judicial procedures and decisions.
(a) Court orders issued pursuant to subdivision
3 or 4 shall be based upon clear and convincing evidence and a written record of the disposition of
the case shall be made and retained.
(b) Any person subject to isolation or quarantine has the right to be represented by counsel.
Persons not otherwise represented may request the court to appoint counsel at the expense of the
Department of Health or of a local public health board that has entered into a written delegation
agreement with the commissioner under subdivision 7. The court shall appoint counsel when
so requested and may have one counsel represent a group of persons similarly situated. The
appointments shall be only for representation under subdivisions 3 and 4 and for appeals of
orders under subdivisions 3 and 4. On counsel's request, the commissioner or an agent of a local
board of health authorized under section
shall advise counsel of protective measures
recommended to protect counsel from possible transmission of the communicable disease.
Appointments shall be made and counsel compensated according to procedures developed by the
Supreme Court. The procedures shall provide standards for determining indigency for purposes
of appeal. A person seeking an appeal who does not meet the indigency standard may, upon
motion by the commissioner of health or local public health board and subsequent court order,
reimburse the Department of Health or local public health board for the attorney fees and costs
incurred in the person's appeal. Counsel appointed for a respondent must be allowed to withdraw
from representation and is not required to pursue an appeal if, in the opinion of counsel, there
is insufficient basis for proceeding.
(c) The court may choose to conduct a hearing under subdivision 3 or 4 by telephonic,
interactive video, or other electronic means to maintain isolation or quarantine precautions and
reduce the risk of spread of a communicable disease. Otherwise, the manner in which the request
for a hearing is filed and acted upon shall be in accordance with the existing laws and rules
of the courts of this state or, if the isolation or quarantine occurs during a national security or
peacetime emergency, any rules that are developed by the courts for use during a national
security or peacetime emergency.
Subd. 6. Data privacy.
Data on individuals contained in the commissioner's directive under
subdivision 2 are health data under section
13.3805, subdivision 1
Subd. 7. Delegation.
The commissioner may delegate any authority prescribed in subdivision
1 or 3 to the local public health board, according to chapter 145A.
History: 2002 c 402 s 19; 2005 c 149 s 2-4