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Settlement for Rollerblading Injury Due to Raised Sidewalk in Michigan

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We recently settled a defective sidewalk case against the City of Southgate for our client was rollerblading on a public sidewalk in the City of Southgate.  He fell due to an uneven sidewalk and was injured.  He suffered a fractured right knee and wore a knee mobilizer.  He is at risk for arthritis and surgery in the future.

Under Michigan law governmental entities (State, County, City, Township, etc…) are immune from liability.  In other words, as a general proposition you cannot sue a governmental entity.  There are statutory exceptions to government immunity, including accidents that result from the disrepair of sidewalks and roadways.  In order to pursue claims against governmental entities for a defective sidewalk or roadway it must be shown that governmental entity had notice of the defect (actual or constructive notice) and written notice must be provided within 120 days after the accident.

This required notice was provided to the City of Southgate but there was no offer to settle the case despite the dangerous sidewalk condition and the serious injury suffered by the rollerblader.  He sustained a comminuted fracture at the patella with “large amount of joint effusion in the suprapatella bursa.”  His knee was placed in an immobilizer.  He is at risk for arthritis and future complications when he gets older

We filed a lawsuit in the Wayne County Circuit Court seeking money damages for his injuries and medical expenses.  The case recently settled for $40,000.00, which was the amount evaluated by a Wayne County Case Evaluation Panel.  The settlement is for the pain and suffering and disability caused by the accident as well as for the medical expenses incurred due to the injuries.

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