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Catching Up on the Case Evaluation Changes

By Rebekah Page-Gourley posted 12-03-2021 12:08

  

On December 2, 2021, the Michigan Supreme Court issued ADM File No 2020-06, amending MCR 2.403, .404, and .405, effective January 1, 2022. The amendments allow parties to avoid case evaluation by stipulating to a different alternative dispute resolution (ADR) process approved by the court. MCR 2.403(A)(2)-(3) (as amended). The amendments delete former MCR 2.403(O), which outlined a rejecting party’s liability for costs, in its entirety. This removes sanctions—and their attendant strategic considerations—from the case evaluation process.

The amending order makes a number of other changes, which ICLE partners can read about in this Legal Update. In light of these amendments and the quickly approaching effective date, ICLE staff and expert contributors are working on revisions to a number of the online books in our Premium Partnership, including Michigan Civil Procedure, No-Fault Automobile Law and Practice in Michigan, Employment Litigation in Michigan, and many more. We are also reviewing our other partnership resources, like How-to Kits and sample forms, to ensure that they reflect these changes.

If you want a bit more background on the origin of these changes, ADM File No 2020-06 includes a concurrence by Justice Cavanagh and a dissent by Justice Viviano that highlight some of the perceived pros and cons. You can also review comments submitted by various bar associations, State Bar of Michigan sections, and members of the bar here.

Once the rule changes are implemented and you’ve started practicing under the amended case evaluation rules, we would love to hear about your experiences, the questions you have about the new process, and your suggestions for additional resources that would be helpful to you. Please feel free to email me at rebekahp@icle.org.

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