The Special Master of the Federal September 11 Victim Compensation Fund discusses his role in distributing awards to victims of various tragedies. While the system has worked in the past, he ultimately concludes that it is not perfect and may not be the best model for the future.
Legislation New Zealand Style and U.S. Style: The Case of Inheritance Law
Hon. Sir Grant Hammond
A New Zealand judge discusses inheritance law in New Zealand and in the United States. The lecture compares the two schemes and focuses on the principle of testamentary freedom.
Class Action Devils and Angels
Justice Paul M. Perell
An Ontario Superior Court justice highlights the good and bad qualities of class-action lawsuits. He analyzes the arguments of the critics and proponents, and he focuses on the rule of the judiciary in these lawsuits.
Distinguished Brief Award is given in recognition of the most scholarly briefs filed before the Michigan Supreme Court, as determined by a panel of eminent jurist. Three briefs are chosen each year and printed in the Thomas M. Cooley Law Review.
Thomas M. Cooley Law Review Distinguished Brief Award Remarks
Justice Stephen J. Markman
Justice Markman delivers the keynote speech at the Distinguished Brief Awards Ceremony. He celebrates this occasion by discussing appellate practice in the Michigan Supreme Court and giving invaluable advice for effective advocacy.
Despite all of these temptations to append gratuitous statements, we rarely engage in such extracurricular communications. But of course, it is necessary for all of you to understand, as I believe that you so, that good briefs do change judicial minds.
PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF MICHIGAN
DAVID MARK COLE
J.J. Prescott, Miriam J. Aukerman, Michael J. Steinberg, Kary L. Moss, and John R. Minock
This amicus brief on behalf of the Criminal Defense Lawyers of Michigan and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Michigan argues that defendants accused of first- or second-degree criminal sexual conduct in Michigan must be made aware that pleading guilty will result in mandatory, lifetime electronic monitoring after their release in order for any plea to be valid under Michigan law and the U.S. Constitution. As the brief documents at length, lifetime electronic monitoring imposes severe physical, financial, and social burdens, and these disabilities and restraints are unrelated to or vastly excessive when compared to any reasonable non-punitive governmental interest.
PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF MICHIGAN
KADEEM DENNIS WHITE
Bradley Hall, John R. Minock, Steven A. Drizin, and Laura Nirider
The Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan and the Center on Wrongful Convictions of Youth collaborated on an amicus curiae brief in support of rehearing in People v. White. This case involved an interrogating police officer’s statements appealing to the conscience of a seventeen-year-old suspect who had invoked his right to silence under Miranda. The Michigan Supreme Court held that the officer’s comments did not amount to the functional equivalent of express questioning under Rhode Island v. Innis, thus a subsequent confession was admissible. This brief argues in favor of greater protections for juveniles in the custodial-interrogation setting, highlighting the particular vulnerabilities of youth and the troubling frequency of juvenile false confessions.
MICHIGAN PROPERTIES, LLC,
Bill Schuette, John J. Bursch, Richard A. Bandstra, and Matt Hodges
In Michigan Properties, the Michigan Supreme Court asked whether a local assessor retains the power to adjust a property’s taxable value if he mistakenly fails to make the proper adjustment in the year immediately following a transfer of ownership. The court agreed with the Michigan State Tax Commission that the answer to that question is yes.
The Michigan Friend of the Court Bureau devoted an entire subsection of the 2013 Michigan Child Support Formula to assist trial courts in determining income for business owners and self-employed individuals. But this subsection merely provided the trial court with factors to determine when considering income, while failing to address that business owners have control over, and incentive to manipulate, their compensation, assets, and business records. As a result, child-support awards fail to meet the interests of our children.
This Comment considers the public-safety exception to the Miranda requirements and, specifically, how the exception applies to the FBI’s 16-hour pre-Miranda interrogation of suspected Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. It details the history of the public-safety exception from its genesis in New York v. Quarles to the recent high-profile domestic-terror cases of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab and Faisal Shahzad. While evaluating argument for a less restrictive reading or an outright elimination of the public-safety exception (as has been advocated by many politicians in the wake of domestic terror attacks) and for a narrow reading, this Comment argues that the narrower reading’s benefits outweigh its potential costs; such a reading preserves the constitutional rights of the accused, promotes faith and certainty in the system, and would not result in increased danger to the public.