Bills creating specialized courts signed by Governor Snyder

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From the State of Michigan

Gov. Rick Snyder signed legislation to increase the efficiency of the Michigan court system and enhance responsiveness for certain complex cases on Tuesday.
Shown in the photo at right: Gov. Rick Snyder, seated center, signs House Bill 5128 Tuesday afternoon at the state Capitol. Also pictured, from left, are state Sen. Rick Jones; state Rep. John Walsh, sponsor of H.B. 5128; Douglas Toering, attorney at Toering Law Firm; Andrew Doctoroff, co-chair of the Business Impact Committee of the State Bar Judicial Crossroads Task Force; Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Robert Young Jr.; Governor’s Legal Affairs Director Michael Gadola; and Diane Akers, co-chair of the Business Impact Committee of the State Bar Judicial Crossroads Task Force.

The bills create two types of specialized courts. House Bill 5128, sponsored by state Rep. John Walsh, provides for the establishment of business courts with jurisdiction over business and commercial cases in which the amount in controversy exceeds $25,000. These create a more efficient system to handle business court cases across the state.

House Bills 5159 and 5162, sponsored by state Reps. Wayne Schmidt and Kurt Damrow, allow circuit and district courts to create supervised treatment programs for veterans suffering from mental illness or drug or alcohol dependency. The legislation also requires the State Drug Treatment Court Advisory Committee to monitor the effectiveness of these programs and to include a circuit or district court judge who has presided over a veteran’s treatment court.
“These specialized courts address specific needs in our judicial system, streamlining the court process and maximizing efficiency,” Snyder said. “Establishing business courts helps solve complex business cases and provides another important tool for ensuring a strong economic climate, while veterans treatment courts provide understanding, solution-based legal assistance to help veterans get back on their feet.”

H.B. 5128 now is Public Act 333 of 2012. H.B.s 5159 and 5162 now are P.A.s 334 and 335.