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Judge denies state's request to throw out mid-Michigan flooding lawsuit

Midland dam
Posted at 11:28 PM, May 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-21 23:28:47-04

MIDLAND, Mich. — The Michigan Court of Claims has denied the state’s request to throw out of court lawsuits filed by victims of last year’s flooding in mid-Michigan.

That means the case will continue on its path toward trial.

Ven Johnson, the lawyer representing about 300 victims of the flood, supported Judge Diane Stephens’ ruling.

“The State of Michigan has already claimed it will be filing an appeal, proving they have learned nothing nor have empathy for the people of mid-Michigan who lost everything due to the state’s negligence,” Johnson said. “In her opinion and order, Judge Stephens warned the State of Michigan that an appeal would be frivolous in view of the fact that the victims are not asserting a ‘tort’ action, but instead are proceeding on the theory of recovery called ‘inverse condemnation,’ or in other words, an improper taking of an individual’s land by the government.”

Johnson added that the denial of the state’s request is “a significant step forward” in compensating the nearly 10,000 flood victims.

Read the judge's full opinion and order here.

READ MORE: One year ago, a 500-year flood swallowed Mid-Michigan