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January 25, 2017

MSC grants MOAA on whether an employee’s communication with her attorney constitutes a report to a public body within the meaning of the Whistleblowers’ Protection Act

In Tammy McNeil-Marks v. Mid-Michigan Medical Center-Gratiot, No. 154159, the Michigan Supreme Court granted mini-oral argument to address whether an employee’s communication with her attorney constitutes a report to a public body within the meaning of the Whistleblowers’ Protection Act (“WPA”).  The plaintiff in the action had an encounter with one of her employer’s patients, against whom she had a personal protection order (“PPO”).  After informing her attorney of the encounter, her employer discharged her for violating the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPPA”).  The plaintiff subsequently filed an action against her employer, alleging in part that her discharge violated the WPA.  The trial court granted summary disposition in favor of the employer; however, the Court of Appeals reversed, holding that the plaintiff’s discussion with her attorney amounted to a report to a public body within the meaning of the WPA. 
 
Specifically, the Michigan Supreme Court granted mini-oral argument on the question of “whether the plaintiff’s communication with her attorney constitutes a report to a public body within the meaning of [the WPA] such that it is protected activity under the [WPA].”
 
 To view our previous blog post about the Court of Appeals’ opinion, click here.
 

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