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Delk v Phillips and Greim; (COA-UNP, 5/18/2006, RB #2744)


Michigan Court of Appeals; Docket #266356; Unpublished
Judges White, Fitzgerald, and Talbot; unanimous; per curiam
Official Michigan Reporter Citation: Not applicable, Link to Opinion

Serious Impairment of Body Function Definition (Kreiner Era - 1996-2010 [3135(7)]
General Ability / Normal Life Element of Serious Impairment [3135(7)]
Causation Issues [3135]

Not applicable

In this unanimous unpublished per curiam opinion decided without oral argument after the Supreme Court’s decision in Kreiner v Fischer [RB #2428] interpreting the statutory definition of serious impairment of body function, the Court of Appeals reversed the trial court order granting summary disposition in favor of defendants on plaintiff’s claim for non-economic losses. The plaintiff in this case claimed that due to the aggravation of undefined pre-existing injuries, she is nearly incapacitated by unrelenting pain. In reversing, the Court of Appeals first noted the trial court failed to make the required findings under each of step of the Kreiner test. It then determined there are unresolved issues of fact regarding whether plaintiff’s injuries were causally related to the automobile accident and the effect the injuries had on plaintiff’s ability to lead her normal life. In this regard, the court declared:

Although the trial court neglected to make the requisite findings regarding each step of the Kreiner test, it is apparent that genuine issues of fact precluded summary disposition. Our review of the record shows that there is an issue of fact whether the injuries plaintiff claimed to have sustained in the February 2004 accident were causally related to that accident. There is also a question of fact concerning the effect of the injuries on plaintiff’s ability to lead her normal life. As the trial court noted, in May 2003, plaintiff claimed to be nearly incapacitated by unrelenting pain. However, she testified at her deposition that nearly all of her problems had been resolved and she was able to function virtually normally by February 23, 2004, and it was only after the accident that she once again became incapacitated due to a combination of preexisting injuries and injuries allegedly sustained in the February 2004 accident. Because genuine issues of material fact remained, the trial court erred in granting defendants’ motion.”

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