COA holds that life tenants can claim statutory exemption from local school operating tax

Believe it or not, there is still such a thing as a life tenancy, and it can qualify as a principle residence under the General Property Tax Act.  In Flowers v Township of Bedford, the Court of Appeals held that a life tenant is an “owner” of property under MCL 211.7dd(a) and, therefore, qualifies for the principle residence exemption under MCL 211.7cc. Read More

COA holds that medical-malpractice plaintiffs may amend prematurely filed complaints

The Court of Appeals convened a conflict panel in Furr v McLoed to resolve a conflict between its previous opinion in that case and its opinion in Tyra v Organ Procurement Agency of Michigan, 302 Mich App 208; 840 NW2d 730 (2013). The two opinions had reached opposite conclusions regarding whether a plaintiff can amend his complaint to render it complaint with the mandatory notice waiting period for medical malpractice action. The conflict panel held that a plaintiff can amend. Read More

COA holds that a former property owner lacks standing to challenge foreclosure after redemption period has expired

In Bryan v. JP Morgan Chase Bank, the Michigan Court of Appeals concluded that the plaintiff did not have standing to challenge a foreclosure after the expiration of the redemption period. Moreover, regardless of standing, the plaintiff failed to demonstrate prejudice as required to set aside the allegedly defective foreclosure. Read More

Trial court must articulate substantial and compelling reasons for sentencing defendant convicted of CSC-1 to minimum prison term higher than 25 years

In People v. Payne, the Michigan Court of Appeals held that applying the reasoning that the Michigan Supreme Court previously articulated in People v. Wilcox, 485 Mich. 60 (2010), MCL 750.520b(2)(b) creates a 25-year mandatory minimum for criminal sexual conduct in the first degree (where the victim is less than 13 years old and the defendant is 17 or older).  Further, the court held that a trial court judge must articulate substantial and compelling reasons for sentencing a defendant convicted of this offense to a mandatory minimum period of incarceration greater than 25 years. 
Here, the trial court judge sentenced Payne to a 30-to-50 year prison sentence without articulating substantial and compelling reasons on the record.  Accordingly, Payne’s sentence was vacated and remanded for resentencing consistent with this opinion.
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MSC to hear further argument on the validity of Wayne County’s ordinance limiting fund reserves and distributions for retirees

In its battle over millions in public employee retirement benefits (see earlier blog of COA opinion here), the Employee Retirement System has so far preserved its lower-court defeat of Wayne County’s ordinance, avoiding the peremptory reverseal that often follows a mini-oral argument on the application.  Now on to the full briefing . . . view the article for the issues to be addressed. Read More
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