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One Court of Justice Blog

Apr 2017
April 12, 2017

A statute of limitations defense belongs only to the party raising it and cannot be resolved before that party is added to an action

A court may not preemptively decide whether a statute of limitations defense is available to a necessary party before he or she has been made a party to the litigation, held the Michigan Supreme Court in Graham v. Foster, No. 152058.  Additionally, the Court also held that a person timely made a party to an action may not claim on his or her own behalf that the action is time-barred on the basis of the plaintiff’s failure to add a necessary party before the limitations period expired.

Apr 2017
April 12, 2017

COA: Contract with the state does not create a legal duty, does not make the contractor a public officer

Signing a contract with the Wayne County Building Authority does not make an independent contractor a public officer, said the Michigan Court of Appeals. In People v. Parlovecchio, No. 333590, the prosecution claimed that the defendant—an independent building contractor—could be indicted as “a public employee or person holding public trust under MCL 750.478.” The Court of Appeals disagreed. Analyzing the relevant statute, the court found that the criminal statute applies only to public officers and to those who owe a “duty created by law” to a state actor.

Apr 2017
April 11, 2017

MSC grants MOAA on whether 60-day appeal period applies to challenges of permits to install control devices

The Michigan Supreme Court has granted mini-oral argument in South Dearborn Environmental Improvement Association Inc. v. Department of Environmental Quality, No. 326485 on the questions of (1) whether MCL 324.5505(8) and MCL 324.5506(14) prescribe the applicable time period for filing a petition for judicial review of the Department of Environmental Quality’s (“DEQ”) issuance of a permit to install control equipment, and (2) if not, whether the issuance of that permit was a decision of that agency subject to the contested case provisions of the Administrative Procedures Act, such that the 60-day period for filing a petition for judicial review set forth in MCR 7.119 applies.

Apr 2017
April 10, 2017

MSC grants leave to consider whether courts are bound by the sentence of one day to life for a conviction of indecent exposure by a sexually delinquent person

The Michigan Supreme Court granted leave to appeal in People v Arnold, No. 154764, ordering the parties to address whether MCL 750.335a(2)(c), the statute addressing indecent exposure by a sexually delinquent person, requires the mandatory imposition of a sentence of 1 day to life or whether the sentencing court may impose a sentence within the applicable sentencing guidelines range. 

Apr 2017
April 09, 2017

COA: Although it imposes a tax, statute allowing trial courts to order criminal defendants to pay court costs is constitutional

The imposition of court costs on criminal defendants under MCL 769.1k(1)(b)(iii) is constitutional, said the Court of Appeals in People v Cameron, No. 330876. Addressing an issue the Court acknowledged had been challenged before but never settled by a published opinion, the Court held that although the statute imposes a tax on defendants, it is constitutional.

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