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September 2013

Sep 2013
30
September 30, 2013

MSC grants leave to decide whether wage loss qualifies as a “bodily injury,” thereby allowing a plaintiff to avoid application of governmental immunity.

In Hannay v. Department of Transportation, the plaintiff was injured after a state salt truck ran a stop sign and struck her car.  Her injuries prevented her from becoming a dental hygienist.  In addition to other damages, the trial court awarded the plaintiff economic damages for her work loss as a hygienist.

Sep 2013
30
September 30, 2013

MSC reinstates convictions and sentences of defendant who was shackled during trial.

In People v. Arthur, the Michigan Supreme Court held that the trial court’s refusal to remove the defendant’s shackles so that he could move about the courtroom freely to act as his own attorney did not “nullify” his right to self-representation.  The defendant could still have represented himself from the defense table, the court reasoned, but elected not to do so

Sep 2013
27
September 27, 2013

COA rules that guardians are not entitled to the “fit parent” presumption when they deny visitation to a grandparent.

In Book-Gilbert v. Greenleaf, the Michigan Court of Appeals read the plain language of the Michigan grandparent visitation statute to say that a guardian’s decision to deny visitation to a grandparent is not entitled to the same presumption as a “fit parent’s” decision to deny visitation.

Sep 2013
23
September 23, 2013

MSC grants leave to decide whether Michigan’s Rape Shield statute prohibits evidence of a child’s prior sexual abuse.

In People v. Shaver, the defendant was convicted of sexually abusing his cousin’s two children.  At his trial he tried to introduce evidence that the children’s father had recently been convicted of criminal sexual conduct against at least one of the children.  The trial court did not allow the evidence.  After twice remanding the case for evidentiary hearings, the Michigan Court of Appeals ultimately upheld Shaver’s convictions.

Sep 2013
23
September 23, 2013

MSC schedules MOA on whether highway exception to governmental immunity covers parallel parking spaces

The Michigan Supreme Court will hear oral argument on whether to grant leave in Yono v. Department of Transportation. The Court directed the parties to submit supplemental briefing regarding: whether the parallel parking area where the plaintiff fell is in the improved portion of the highway designed for vehicular travel within the meaning of the statutory highway exception to governmental immunity, MCL 691.1402(1)

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