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​The following are summaries of cases that have been or will be argued before the Michigan Supreme Court during the 2012-2013 term, as well as links to the Court's opinion or order in each case. Further information may be obtained by calling the Supreme Court Clerk's Office at 517-373-0120. To help you select cases that may be of interest to you, the Court's staff has prepared the following synopses. These are simple summaries of complicated cases, and might not reflect the manner in which some or all of the Court's seven Justices view the cases. The lawyers may also disagree with regard to the facts, the issues, the procedural history, or the significance of their cases. For further details concerning these cases, you should contact the lawyers.
 

 2012-2013 Arguments

 
  • 05/08/2013

    Issue:
    While robbing a convenience store, the defendant hit both store clerks in the head with what appeared to be a sawed-off shotgun. Should the range for his minimum sentence be increased on the basis that his conduct was “designed to substantially increase the fear and anxiety a victim suffered”? ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 3

    Opinions: 144327; 144979 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 05/08/2013

    Issue:
    The defendant racked a shotgun while robbing the victim. Should the range for his minimum sentence be increased on the basis that his conduct was “designed to substantially increase the fear and anxiety a victim suffered”? ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 2

    Opinions: 144327; 144979 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 05/08/2013

    Issue:
    Several months before he was to be discharged from parole on drug possession charges, the plaintiff in this case was pulled over while driving with a drug dealer friend; police discovered a gun in the engine compartment. After the parole board concluded that he had violated his parole, the plaintiff brought an action for habeas corpus, arguing in part that there was insufficient evidence that he had violated his parole conditions. ...More

    Orders: 145116 Order

    Calendar Number: 1

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 04/17/2013

    Issue:
    A department store security officer observed the defendant taking a box of fragrance without paying for it; the officer followed the defendant through the store and was close enough to see the defendant place the fragrance box in her bag, and also to hear the defendant speak to sales staff. The officer followed the defendant into the mall outside the store and confronted her; in the ensuing scuffle, the defendant bit and scratched the officer. Did the defendant’s actions amount to “larceny from the person” – “stealing from the person of another” – under MCL 750.357? ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 8

    Opinions: 145371 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 04/11/2013

    Issue:
    At issue is whether a shooting range is subject to local zoning ordinances – or is protected from such controls by the Sport Shooting Ranges Act. ...More

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions: 145144-Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 04/11/2013

    Issue:
    A Detroit judge opposes the Judicial Tenure Commission’s proposal that she be suspended for 180 days without pay. The JTC alleges, among other matters, that the judge lied under oath to the JTC and forged her former divorce attorney’s signature on legal documents. ...More

    Orders: 144985 Order

    Calendar Number: 7

    Opinions: 144985 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 04/11/2013

    Issue:
    A 16-year-old girl died following an auto accident in Michigan, where she had been living with her mother and uncle for several months. For about 11 years before that, she lived with her father in Tennessee. At issue is where she was “domiciled” – and which of two insurance companies is liable for paying personal protection benefits on her behalf. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions: 145206; 143808 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 04/11/2013

    Issue:
    A child of divorced parents was fatally injured in an auto accident, while riding in a car driven by her mother. The mother’s no-fault insurer seeks to be reimbursed by the father’s insurer company for half the no-fault benefits Farm Bureau paid to the child’s estate. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 1

    Opinions: 145206; 143808 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 04/10/2013

    Issue:
    The defendant shot another man, then fled the scene of the shooting, turning himself in to police 15 days later. Do his actions amount to “interference with the administration of justice” – and warrant a longer sentence? ...More

    Orders: 144762 Order

    Calendar Number: 2

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 04/10/2013

    Issue:
    A five-year-old girl refused to testify in a sex abuse case against her father, although she had earlier told several people, including a teacher, a sexual assault nurse examiner, and a forensic interviewer, about the alleged abuse. The girl also told others, including her mother and the forensic interviewer, that her father warned her not to tell anyone about the alleged abuse. The prosecution argues that the child was “unavailable” as a witness due to her father’s “wrongdoing” – and that her earlier statements should be allowed into evidence. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 4

    Opinions: 145604 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 04/10/2013

    Issue:
    Residents of a Saginaw subdivision seek to block the 2009 sale of one of the homes to a corporation that operates adult foster care homes. A covenant requires property owners in the Center Woods subdivision to give 30 days’ notice to Center Woods, Inc. – but the corporation had dissolved in 1993 and was not reinstated until the day this lawsuit was filed. Was the seller required to give notice? ...More

    Orders: 144721 Order

    Calendar Number: 5

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 04/10/2013

    Issue:
    A four-year-old girl, a witness in a sex abuse case, told the trial judge “No” when asked if she knew what the truth is and what a lie is. The judge barred her from testifying on the basis that the child was not “competent to be a witness.” Can her earlier testimony at the defendants’ preliminary examinations be admitted on the ground that she is “unavailable as a witness” under MRE 804(a)? ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 6

    Opinions: 146295; 146296 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 03/07/2013

    Issue:
    Is a tailgate on a dump trailer “equipment permanently mounted on the vehicle” for the purposes of the auto no-fault act? ...More

    Orders: 144781 Order

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 03/07/2013

    Issue:
    A rural electric cooperative in Grand Traverse County claims it overpaid personal property taxes based on a “mutual mistake of fact” and is entitled to a refund of the overpayment under MCL 211.53a. ...More

    Orders: 145340 Order

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 03/06/2013

    Issue:
    The defendant was arrested for a gas station robbery and questioned by police detectives, but invoked his right to an attorney after he was advised of his Miranda rights. Three days later, he confessed to the crime in a jailhouse interview with a parole officer, who did not give the defendant a Miranda warning; the defendant’s attorney was not present for the interview. Was the parole officer a “law enforcement officer” for purposes of Miranda? Did the trial court err by allowing the parole officer to testify about the interview, including the defendant’s confession? ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 9

    Opinions: 144983-Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 03/06/2013

    Issue:
    Is the plaintiff entitled to “double dip” benefits for the same injury from his health care insurer and the no-fault insurer of the car that hit him? ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 7

    Opinions: 144579 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 03/06/2013

    Issue:
    The plaintiff sued the Kent County Sheriff’s Department for its failure to carry out a court order to take her suicidal brother into custody for psychiatric evaluation, but her lawsuit was dismissed on grounds of governmental immunity. May she seek damages – based on the same facts – under the civil contempt statute? ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 8

    Opinions: 145055 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 03/06/2013

    Issue:
    The jury in the defendant’s criminal sexual conduct case viewed a videotape of the defendant’s interrogation by detectives about his alleged sexual abuse of a young girl. The defendant seeks to overturn his conviction, arguing that some of the detectives’ statements and questions – in which they appeared to support the girl’s credibility but disparage the defendant’s – should not have been shown to the jury. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 5

    Opinions: 145237 - Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 03/05/2013

    Issue:
    At issue is whether a change in calculating pension benefits for retired Macomb County employees can be pursued as an unfair labor practices claim – or whether these claims are subject to grievance and arbitration proceedings as provided in collective bargaining agreements. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 2

    Opinions: 144303 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 03/05/2013

    Issue:
    At issue is whether a court has the constitutional authority to issue a writ of mandamus ordering a local government to levy and spend taxes. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 3

    Opinions: 144630 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 03/05/2013

    Issue:
    The plaintiffs seek to have their two companies – one operating in Michigan and the other in Oklahoma – treated as a “unitary business” for Michigan income tax purposes. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 1

    Opinions: 144430-32; 145367-70 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 03/05/2013

    Issue:
    The petitioners in this case argue that their Michigan-based S corporation and a German company should be treated as a “unitary business” for Michigan income tax purposes. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 6

    Opinions: 144430-32; 145367-70 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 03/05/2013

    Issue:
    A guest at an apartment complex was shot while attending a barbeque in one of the complex’s common areas; a resident had earlier complained about the shooter to security guards, who took no action. One issue is whether the apartment complex had a duty to summon police to protect the guest. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 4

    Opinions: 144055 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 01/10/2013

    Issue:
    Several months before he was to be discharged from parole on drug possession charges, the plaintiff in this case was pulled over while driving with a drug dealer friend; police discovered a gun in the engine compartment. After the parole board concluded that he had violated his parole, the plaintiff brought an action for habeas corpus, arguing in part that there was insufficient evidence that he had violated his parole conditions. ...More

    Orders: 145116 Order

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 01/10/2013

    Issue:
    A man who suffered a grand mal seizure after being in a car accident was in a second accident while riding his uninsured motorcycle several months later. He claims that the second accident is related to his injuries in the first – and that therefore, the no-fault insurer for the car he was riding in during the first accident is obligated to pay him no-fault benefits. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions: 144666 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 01/10/2013

    Issue:
    At issue is whether a homeless man who lived at an adult foster care facility could be deemed a “family member” who would be covered under the facility’s no-fault insurance policy. ...More

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 01/10/2013

    Issue:
    At issue is whether the plaintiff’s medical malpractice claim was brought within the statute of limitations – and whether the notice of intent served to stop the limitations period from running out. ...More

    Orders: 144875 Order

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 01/09/2013

    Issue:
    On the way to a music festival, four people were injured while riding in a utility van owned by the festival company. At issue is whether the four passengers’ insurers – or the insurer of the festival company’s vans – are ultimately responsible for covering no-fault benefits paid to the passengers. ...More

    Calendar Number: 5

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 01/09/2013

    Issue:
    The defendant did not take the stand at his first trial, which ended in a hung jury, but did testify at his second trial that he was elsewhere when the victim was shot. Among the issues in this appeal is whether the trial court erred by allowing the prosecutor to raise, in cross-examination and in closing arguments, the defendant’s failure to assert his alibi before the second trial ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 8

    Opinions: 144696-Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 01/09/2013

    Issue:
    When an employee with two jobs is injured on one of those jobs and becomes disabled, the employer at the place where the worker was injured is responsible for paying worker’s compensation wage loss benefits based on the employee’s combined wages from both jobs. If the employee’s wages from the “injury employer” are 80 percent or less of the worker’s combined wages, the Second Injury Fund is required to reimburse that “injury employer” for compensation payments based on the percentage of wages earned with the other employer. In this case, the “injury employer” chose to pay more than the amount required under the state’s Worker’s Disability Compensation Act by not taking advantage of the provision allowing the coordination of benefits. Is the Second Injury Fund liable based on the worker’s ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 3

    Opinions: 144354 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 01/09/2013

    Issue:
    The plaintiffs sued to stop a drain consolidation project in Gratiot County, arguing in part that a notice of public hearing on the project did not sufficiently identify all the areas the project would affect. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 6

    Opinions: 144166 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 01/09/2013

    Issue:
    The plaintiff sued the defendant, contending that the defendant owed over $92,000 for concrete supplies the plaintiff provided. The defendant argues that, under the Uniform Commercial Code, the plaintiff’s suit is barred by a four-year statute of limitations for lawsuits over sales of goods; the plaintiff maintains that a general six-year limitations period for contract actions applies. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 1

    Opinions: 143374 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 11/15/2012

    Issue:
    The plaintiff, the former police chief for the city of Burton, sued the city under the Whistleblowers’ Protection Act, claiming that, after he complained that the city was violating a local ordinance by not paying for his unused sick and personal time, the city retaliated against him by not renewing his contract. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 5

    Opinions: 143475 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 11/15/2012

    Issue:
    At issue is whether the plaintiff can seek emotional distress and mental anguish damages caused by the negligent destruction of her home. The parties agree that all economic damages have been covered by the plaintiff’s insurer, the defendant, or the defendant’s insurer. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 1

    Opinions: 143831 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 11/15/2012

    Issue:
    The plaintiff in this case conceived twins, using her deceased husband’s frozen sperm, after his death; she applied for Social Security survivor’s benefits for the children, but the Social Security Administration denied her application on the ground that the children could not inherit from her husband under Michigan law. At issue is whether the twins are the “children” of the plaintiff’s husband for purposes of Michigan intestacy law. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions: 144385 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 11/15/2012

    Issue:
    In October 2011, the Michigan Department of Human Services announced that it would impose a lifetime limit of 60 months on family cash assistance payments, and that it was eliminating a hardship exemption that previously allowed some recipients to continue receiving cash assistance past the lifetime limit. The plaintiffs in this case challenge that policy, arguing in part that the DHS director had no authority to revoke what they argue is an entitlement under the state’s Social Welfare Act. ...More

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 11/14/2012

    Issue:
    To extend water and sewer service to another property, Lyon Township exercised eminent domain over water and sewage lines located under a unit in the defendant’s development. The defendant’s development, Lyon Towne Center, shares owners, utilities, a strategic development plan, and infrastructure with another development, Lyon Crossing. The defendant owner claims that the township’s taking on Lyon Towne Center property harmed Lyon Crossing’s market advantage – and that the owner is entitled to damages. ...More

    Calendar Number: 3

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 11/14/2012

    Issue:
    Two attorneys are suing their former law firm for alleged violations of the state’s Civil Rights Act, claiming that the firm forced them out because of their age. The firm and other defendants maintain that the plaintiffs have to submit their claims to binding arbitration, rather than pursue them in court, under an agreement that all members of the law firm signed. ...More

    Calendar Number: 4

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 11/14/2012

    Issue:
    The plaintiff sued the defendant police chief, alleging that the defendant assaulted him without provocation and wrongfully arrested him. Is the police chief absolutely immune from suit, or can the lawsuit proceed on the ground that he was acting as a police officer and not in his executive capacity? ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 6

    Opinions: 144142-3 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 11/14/2012

    Issue:
    A man brought a paternity action against his former girlfriend, contending that he was the father of her child – but the woman moved to dismiss the lawsuit, based on what appeared, on its face, to be a valid acknowledgment of parentage signed by another man. Does the plaintiff, the alleged biological father, have standing to bring this paternity suit? ...More

    Orders: 144238 Order

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 11/14/2012

    Issue:
    The defendant, who was sentenced to serve 630 days on seven counts of contempt of court, argues that the sentence was excessive – and that the trial court erred by ordering him to serve his contempt sentence consecutive to his sentence on a drug charge. ...More

    Orders: 145142 Order

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 11/14/2012

    Issue:
    At issue is whether the defendant insurance company is obligated to pay for a new van plus the cost of modifying the van to accommodate the injured plaintiff’s needs. The insurer argues that it is obligated to pay for the modifications only. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 2

    Opinions: 142842 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/31/2012

    Issue:
    At issue is whether a circuit court judge should have granted a developer’s request for a preliminary injunction to block a vote on a rezoning decision by Salem Township. Those who filed petitions for a referendum on the rezoning claim they satisfied statutory timing requirements – a claim that the developer disputes. ...More

    Orders: 146002 Order

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/25/2012

    Issue:
    Police officers seized a large collection of firearms from the defendant’s home; all but one – a sawed-off shotgun – were legal for the defendant to possess. After pleading guilty to possession of an illegal firearm and felony-firearm, the defendant asked that the police turn over the legally owned firearms to his mother. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions: 144631 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/11/2012

    Issue:
    At issue is whether the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act, MCL 333.26421 et seq., permits patient-to-patient sales of marihuana. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 7

    Opinions: 143824 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/11/2012

    Issue:
    In this Michigan Medical Marihuana Act case, the defendant, a registered primary caregiver for two qualifying patients, leased commercial space where he not only cultivated marihuana for his own patients, but also allowed others to grow marihuana. At issue is whether the MMMA permits qualifying patients and registered primary caregivers to possess and cultivate marihuana in a collective or cooperative. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions: 144120 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/11/2012

    Issue:
    In a videotaped statement to the police, the defendant confessed to beating and robbing the victim, but denied shooting him. He contends that the confession should be suppressed, claiming that a police officer misled him about his right to counsel and that the officer only gave him Miranda warnings after the questioning started. ...More

    Orders: 144239 Order

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/11/2012

    Issue:
    The defendant, who was arrested for murder and other felonies, invoked his right to remain silent during police questioning. The police officer then told the defendant that he was concerned that the gun used in the murder could be found and used to hurt another person; the defendant responded that the homicide was an accident. At issue is whether that statement should be suppressed. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 8

    Opinions: 144387 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/10/2012

    Issue:
    As an adult, the defendant pled guilty to a sexual assault that he may have committed when he was too young to be subject to adult court jurisdiction. At issue is whether his guilty plea must be vacated. ...More

    Orders: 143469 Order

    Calendar Number: Oral Argument on Application

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/10/2012

    Issue:
    The defendant and the 14-year-old victim in this criminal sexual conduct case share the same legal father; the defendant was conceived and born during the marriage of his mother to his legal father, and a 1979 divorce judgment identifies the then-boy as the child of the marriage. The defendant seeks to reduce his first-degree CSC charge – an element of which is that the defendant is related to the victim “by blood or affinity” – on the basis of DNA testing that shows he is not his legal father’s biological son. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 5

    Opinions: 143736 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/10/2012

    Issue:
    The plaintiff, the former director of Lake County’s 911 department, seeks to pursue a Whistleblowers Protection Act claim against the county. She contends that she was fired because, among other matters, she objected to a transfer of money from the county’s ambulance fund. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 6

    Opinions: 143841 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/10/2012

    Issue:
    The bank holding the plaintiffs’ mortgage failed, and the failed bank’s loans were bought by JP Morgan Chase Bank pursuant to the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act of 1989. The plaintiffs challenge Chase’s foreclosure of their home, arguing in part that the foreclosure was legally void because there was no recorded assignment from their failed bank to Chase. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 9

    Opinions: 144690 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/10/2012

    Issue:
    The defendant, who was convicted of three counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct, unsuccessfully sued his attorney for legal malpractice. One issue in this case is whether rulings in that civil case bar the defendant from seeking a new criminal trial on the ground that he was denied his constitutional right to effective assistance of counsel. ...More

    Orders:

    Calendar Number: 2

    Opinions: 143386 Opinion

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/09/2012

    Issue:
    The plaintiff contends that the defendant college board of trustees, which was being sued by one of its members, violated the Open Meetings Act by holding a closed session that included that member and his attorney, in addition to the board’s own legal counsel. ...More

    Orders: 143621 Order

    Calendar Number: 3

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 10/09/2012

    Issue:
    A motorcyclist was killed when his motorcycle collided with a parked vehicle. After his estate collected $20,000 – the limit on that policy – from the parked car’s insurer, the estate sought to recover an additional $20,000 in underinsured motorist (UIM) benefits from the defendant, which insured the motorcycle. The defendant insurer denied the estate’s claim, contending that when a policyholder selects the minimum UM/UIM coverage limits of $20,000/$40,000, as the deceased did, it is impossible for another vehicle to be defined as “underinsured.” ...More

    Orders: 143627 Order

    Calendar Number: 4

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • 09/10/2012

    Issue:
    At issue is whether the plaintiff can recover auto no-fault insurance benefits for physical symptoms caused by her depression, which she suffered after witnessing the fatal collision between her son’s motorcycle and another vehicle. ...More

    Orders: 142936 Order

    Calendar Number: 1

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.

  • //

    Issue:
    ...More

    Orders: 145646 Order

    Calendar Number: 3

    Opinions:

    Click here to view the briefs.