Supreme Court reverses another "contract immunity" claim
Several years ago, Michigan Supreme Court rulings that appeared to grant broad immunity to contractors resulted in a rash of dismissals involving personal injury claims. The "Fultz" case decided by the high court was interpreted as granting immunity as against third-party injury claims. whenever an injury arose out of duties spelled out in a contract.
Last month the Michigan Supreme Court ruled in Loweke v. Ann Arbor Ceiling & Partition that the Fultz holding had been widely misinterpreted and did not afford such broad immunity. This month, the Supreme Court overturned the dismissal of George Frommert's injury claim, citing the Loweke opinion and remanding the case for further consideration by the Court of Appeals.
The vacation of the Court of Appeals opinion and remand to the court vindicates Judge Elizabeth Gleicher. She had dissented from the original Court of Appeals decision, arguing that the majority applied the Fultz contract immunity defenses too broadly. Her cogent dissenting opinion in Frommert correctly anticipated the ultimate ruling by the Supreme Court.