Michigan Court of Appeals; Docket No. 89835; Published
Judges Danhof, Branson, and Gillespie; Unanimous; Per Curiam
Official Michigan Reporter Citation: 156 Mich App 438; Link to Opinion
In this unanimous per curiam Opinion, the Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment in favor of defendant on plaintiff’s claim for no-fault benefits arising out of the accidental discharge of a firearm. Plaintiff was injured on a hunting trip. His friend placed a rifle, a muzzle loader which had been built from a kit, on top of the vehicle and walked over to speak with a companion. Plaintiff exited the vehicle and proceeded to walk over to the other members of the hunting party. As he approached, the muzzle loader rifle discharged wounding plaintiff in the chest. Plaintiff’s expert stated that a screw was missing from the firing mechanism of the muzzle loader and that a slight movement by persons in or on the car could have caused the gun to fire. The Court of Appeals agreed with the trial court that there was not a sufficient causal nexus between the accidental injury and the use of a motor vehicle as a motor vehicle as required by §3105(1) of the Act. The court concluded that the vehicle's involvement in this injury was incidental and that the injury was not directly related to the vehicle's character as a motor vehicle.