At a Glance ...


Federal court notice

The Theodore Levin U.S. Courthouse in Detroit was closed to the public Wednesday after a court security officer tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.

The General Services Administration (GSA), which owns the building, said it would remain closed to the public until the GSA can clean the courthouse according to federal guidelines.

Additional details were not immediately available.

AG assigns special agents to help look into price-gouging

State Attorney General Dana Nessel recently assigned a team of special agents to assist her attorneys in gathering information related to the high number of price-gouging complaints the Attorney General’s Office has been receiving during the coronavirus pandemic.

The agents are criminal investigators, Nessel said, and will help the office visit stores to evaluate details of consumer complaints, assist with online research to compare pricing, and receive phone calls or letters from consumers.

“Our objective is to make sure business owners are following the laws Michigan has in place to protect consumers, and public awareness of price-gouging can offer valuable support in our efforts to keep companies honest,” Nessel said.

Consumers can file a complaint online or by calling the Consumer Protection tip line, 877.765.8388. Hours of operation are between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Michigan’s top court sides with woman hurt at party

LANSING (AP) — It might be the most talked-about Christmas party at the Michigan Supreme Court.

The justices recently let stand an appeals court decision and said a jury should decide whether an Oakland County couple is liable for a woman’s injuries when she stepped into a dark room during a 2013 party.

Susan Blackwell was injured when she missed an 8-inch step in the mudroom at the home of Dean and Debra Franchi.

The resulting case has made two trips to the Supreme Court. The court heard arguments at a different stage in 2018.

Blackwell “was injured when she entered a dark room and fell because she was surprised by an 8-inch step down. ... Whether the defendants should have warned her about it — whether they breached their duty — is a question” for jurors, Chief Justice Bridget McCormack said.

Justice Stephen Markman disagreed. He said other lawsuits will be “lying in wait.”

“On what principled grounds should a host expect a guest to act with greater judgment in a wide realm of similarly looming household mishaps: sink and shower faucets configured to dispense hot water; ovens and stoves that heat up; throw rugs that are unstable; chairs capable of tipping over?” Markman said.


Subscribe to the Legal News!

Full access to public notices, articles, columns, archives, statistics, calendar and more

Day Pass Only $4.95!

One-County $80/year

Three-County & Full Pass also available