Court majority rejects senior citizens' housing facility's duty to maintain safe premises
Jane Ford stumbled on a sidewalk at the National Church Residences, Inc.'s, Meadow Creek Village and broke her leg. The 88-year old was getting out of a friend's car with groceries, when she stepped into a patch of crumbled sidewalk and fell. Even though Michigan law requires that rental properties be maintained in a safe condition and "reasonably fit for the purposes intended" Judges Kathleen Jansen and Brian K. Zahra rejected Ford's injury claim. They concluded that part of the statute applies only to the building structures, and that the crumbling condition of the sidewalk did not render it unfit---even in the context of an old folks' home.
Judge William Murphy wrote a scathing dissent, pointing out that crumbled sidewalks do pose a hazard for the aged, making them unfit for a rental campus dedicated to the elderly.