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On Tuesday, October 25, ICLE hosted a Community Zoom on navigating issues in unemployment insurance, featuring contributors Tony Paris, lead attorney at the Sugar Law Center for Economic & Social Justice, and Jennifer Charnizon, statewide staff attorney at Legal Services of South Central Michigan. With a wealth of knowledge and experience, Tony and Jennifer provided insight on current issues with Michigan unemployment insurance including the current backlog of cases, overpayment, fraud, recent developments in the law, and valuable practice pointers. Below are a few highlights from our discussion: Wage garnishment —Currently, there should not be any Pandemic ...
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In November 1919, President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration of “ the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month ” that ended the “war to end all wars,” calling it Armistice Day. President Eisenhower changed the name to Veterans Day in 1954, and after celebrating the day on the fourth Monday in October (to give folks a three day weekend), Michigan's own President Ford returned Veterans Day to its original, historically significant date of November 11. According to U.S. Census Bureau data, there are about 19 million veterans age 18 and older in the United States, with about 13 million age 50 and older. Recent legislation ...
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Honorable B. Chris Christenson III joined the 7th Circuit as a Family Division judge in January 2021. Previously, he practiced in the areas of criminal defense, business and contract litigation, real estate and construction law, general civil litigation, and probate administration. Active in the State Bar of Michigan (SBM), Judge Christenson served on its board of commissioners from 2007 to 2010 and was recently reelected for a term expiring in 2023. He is also a member of the Centennial American Inn of Court and the Friends of Berston Field House's board of commissioners. Judge Christenson is a past president of the Genesee County Bar Association, a former chair ...
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Hon. Carol Anne Kuhnke was elected to her judgeship in 2012 and took the bench in 2013. She is currently the Chief Judge of the Washtenaw County Trial Court and 14A District Court. She hears civil, criminal, adoption, and parental waiver cases, and she started and presides over Drug Treatment Court. Prior to her judgeship, she worked in large and small firms before founding the law firm of Davis & Kuhnke PC in 1997. She worked in civil litigation for 19 years before becoming a judge. Judge Kuhnke has been active in numerous legal and community organizations. She belongs to the American Judges Association, Michigan Judges Association, Michigan Association ...
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The Supreme Court of the United States ruled on Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Org , No 19-1392, ___ US ___ (June 24, 2022), rev’g and remanding 45 F3d 265 (5th Cir 2019), aff’g 349 F Supp 3d 536 (SD Miss 2018), in a 5-3-1 decision . The decision overturned Roe v Wade , 410 US 113 (1973), and Planned Parenthood of SE Pennsylvania v Casey , 505 US 833 (1992), holding there is no longer a federal constitutional right to an abortion. The authority to regulate abortions is now determined by states. Litigation has ensued in Michigan regarding access to abortion post- Dobbs . Michigan has a 1931 abortion ban . See MCL 750.14–.15 . The statute allows ...
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Hon. Cynthia Meagher Arvant is a judge for the 46th District Court. Before her appointment to the bench, she served in various roles for the 46th District, including research attorney, magistrate, and court administrator. Judge Arvant was also previously an assistant attorney general. She is a member of the National Association of Women Judges, the State Bar of Michigan, the Michigan District Judges Association, the Women's Bar Association, Oakland Region of the Women Lawyers Association of Michigan, the Oakland County Bar Association, and the Oakland County District Judges Association (past president). She also serves as chairperson of the State Court Administrative ...
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Hon. Phyllis C. McMillen is the presiding judge of the civil-criminal division of the Oakland County Circuit Court. Judge McMillen previously served as a judge of the 51st District Court in Waterford. She is the past president of the Michigan District Judges Association and the Oakland County District Judges Association. In 2005, Judge McMillen received a Special Recognition Award from the Executive Office of the President, Office of National Drug Control Policy, for her pioneering work in creating sobriety courts. She is a lecturer, contributing author, and faculty member for various state and national organizations. Judge McMillen serves on various executive ...
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In a turning point in national history, the U.S. Supreme Court 2021-22 term ended with a cascade of seminal decisions. The 6-3 conservative supermajority ruled on gun rights, religion, immigration, environmental law, abortion, and criminal procedural rights among other constitutional questions. While the effect of some of these cases have immediately permeated public policy, such as with state gun regulations and abortion laws, the broader implications of the Court’s turn to constitutional originalism and the overturning of long-standing precedent will continue to have far-reaching effects on future governance. A brief summary of some of the most notable decisions ...
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On July 11, 2022, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed three bills into law that repeal COVID-19-related protections for Michigan businesses, employers, and employees in 2020 PA 236 , 237 , and 238 . The affected 2020 COVID-19 legislation protected compliant individuals, entities, and employers from liability against COVID-19 related claims and prohibited employer retaliation against employee absence consistent with established COVID-19 legal requirements. The new laws roll back COVID-19 liability protections in the following ways: 2022 PA 139 amends the COVID-19 Response and Reopening Liability Assurance Act, MCL 691.1451–.1460 , by eliminating ...
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Hon. Jon A. Van Allsburg is chief circuit judge for the 20 th Circuit Court in Ottawa County, Michigan, where he is assigned to the Family Division and Business Court. He spent more than 20 years practicing law before joining the bench and has taught business law at both Grand Valley State University and Hope College. Judge Van Allsburg has served in the Family Violence Department of the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges and is a former president of the Michigan Judges Association. He is an honors graduate of the Michigan State University College of Law. For attorneys who have never been to your court, what is your check-in process? ...
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On June 15, 2022, the Michigan Supreme Court issued ADM File No 2020-15 , amending State Bar Rule 2, adding State Bar Rule 21, adding Subchapter 9.300 of the Michigan Court Rules, and amending MCR 9.119 . The amendments, effective September 1, 2023, require attorneys in private practice to designate an interim administrator “to protect clients by temporarily managing the attorney’s practice if the attorney becomes unexpectedly unable to practice law.” State Bar Rule 21(A). The State Bar of Michigan (SBM) Receivership Workgroup 2019 recommendation indicated that many Michigan attorneys do not have a sufficient plan in place to protect their clients in the ...
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Hon. Elian E. H. Fichtner was appointed by Governor Rick Snyder to the 70-2 District Court in Saginaw County in April 2018. Before her appointment, she was in private practice for 12 years with Smith Bovill, PC, focusing on probate and estate planning with an emphasis on elder law and elder care issues. In 2021, Judge Darnell Jackson, Chief Judge of the Saginaw County Trial Courts, appointed Judge Fichtner to serve as Presiding Judge of the 70th District Court. Judge Fichtner currently runs the Saginaw County Mental Health Court and has served on a number of boards and commissions throughout the state of Michigan and Saginaw County. She is a member of the Probate ...
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Judge Jacob James Cunningham was elected to the bench in November 2018. He currently presides over a family division docket. Prior to his election to the bench, Judge Cunningham was a judicial clerk for the Hon. Wendy Potts and a staff attorney for the Hon. Mary Ellen Brennan. He is a member of the Oakland County Bar Association. Judge Cunningham is also a member of the American Judges Association, Michigan Judges Association, Incorporated Society of Irish American Lawyers, Armenian American Bar Association, International Association of LGBTQ+ Judges, Eastern District of Michigan Federal Bar Association, Michigan Inter-Professional Association, and the Michigan ...
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We recently held an informal ICLE Community Zoom discussing the amendments to the case evaluation rules eliminating sanctions, among other changes. Attorneys Justin Hakala from Plunkett Cooney and Henry Langberg from Henry Langberg PC joined us to provide their expert analysis and insights. Here are some of the highlights: Major changes . (1) Case evaluation sanctions under MCR 2.403(O) were eliminated. (2) The provision in the offer of judgment court rule that offer of judgment sanctions may not be awarded in cases that had been submitted to case evaluation unless the case evaluation award was nonunanimous was deleted. Under the amended court rule, ...
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Overview Gym 24/7 Fitness, LLC, sued the State of Michigan, alleging an unconstitutional taking of its business property resulting from Governor Whitmer’s executive orders shuttering businesses in response to COVID-19. Gym 24/7 Fitness, LLC v State , No 355148 , ___ Mich App ___, ___ NW2d ___ (Mar 31, 2022). Although plaintiff accepted that the executive orders were issued “‘solely for a public purpose,’” it contended that the state and federal constitutions “‘require the payment of just compensation if eminent domain proceedings are not first commenced.’” Id., slip op at *3. Takings Clauses The issue on appeal was “whether the business owner ...
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Judge Shauna Dunnings was elected to the bench in 2018. She previously served as the circuit court administrator in the county, starting in 2013. In 2007, she became the Friend of the Court and deputy court administrator. In 2003, she became assistant Friend of the Court and attorney referee in Eaton County. She served as law clerk for Hon. Gordon J. Quist of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan for one year and was in private practice for 13 years. For attorneys who have never been to your court, what is your check-in process? Attorneys may come into the courtroom, and my law clerk or court recorder will check them in. If the ...
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On February 22, 2022, the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team (USWNT) and U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) announced a settlement had been reached in their ongoing case. In 2019, twenty-eight members of the USWNT filed a lawsuit against USSF in federal court alleging violations of the Equal Pay Act of 1963 and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 . The district court conditionally certified the case as a collective action under the Equal Pay Act and certified the case as a class action under Title VII. The district court granted summary disposition to USSF on the player’s pay-discrimination claims. USWNT then sought review of that ruling in an appeal to ...
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After a remote conference last year, the ABA TECHSHOW reconvened in person in Chicago, March 3-5, 2022. For the first time in almost a decade, I had to sit this one out, and I had serious FOMO. After three days of substantive workshops, the TECHSHOW ends the conference with “60 in 60,” a fast-paced, multi-speaker plenary presenting 60 technology-focused tips in an hour. In 2017, there was a pretty prescient tip recommending Zoom, 2019 offered a little more of an analog tip, and 2020 went downright old school . Still, year after year, the speakers present tips, tools, and resources that run the gamut, and this year was no different. Here are a few of ...
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​ Judge Monte J. Burmeister was elected to the bench in 2007 after engaging in general civil and criminal practice for 12 years. He is a graduate of the Trial Lawyers College and a Paul Harris Fellow. He is a past president of the Michigan Probate Judges Association and a commissioner on the Judicial Tenure Commission since 2013, serving as its chair in 2019 and 2020. He currently presides over a variety of cases, including criminal misdemeanors and civil cases under $25,000, felony preliminary examinations, decedent’s estates, child custody disputes, and abuse and neglect of children cases. For attorneys who have never been to your court, what is your ...
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​ For years, lawyers in Michigan with high conflict custody cases have had recourse to parenting coordinators. Under MCL 722.27c, the court may enter an order for a parenting coordinator for a specified term if the parties and the coordinator agree to the appointment and its scope. The parenting coordinator can help the parties resolve issues with transportation, childcare, discipline, extracurricular activities, school issues, among other things. This can free the parties’ lawyers up to work on the legal aspects of their client’s case, can reduce the parties’ legal bills, and hopefully help the parties learn the skills to resolve issues on their own. Such ...
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