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A Better Partnership

April 2014

Apr 2014
April 11, 2014

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.

Apr 2014
April 09, 2014

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.

Apr 2014
April 08, 2014

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.

Apr 2014
April 07, 2014

MSC finds “serious consequence” to the victim not required under extortion statute

In People v. Harris, the Supreme Court held that under Michigan’s extortion statute (MCL 750.213) the prosecution does not have to prove the defendant intended to compel an act that would cause “serious consequences” to the victim.  Because Harris threated Neal with a gun telling him to continue working on his truck, he orally communicated a malicious threat to injure Neal in order to compel Neal to act against his will (i.e., to work on the truck in the rain).  Accordingly, Harris was guilty of extortion.

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