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Legal Memo with Blue Book formatted Citations - Research Paper Example

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Legal Memo with Blue Book formatted Citations Name Institution Facts Mary Jane Plaine was driving at a considerable acceptable speed when she was involved in an accident. The brakes to her car failed and that is what caused the accident: she could not brake to prevent her car from hitting another vehicle…
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Download file to see previous pages However, their cars were towed from the scene of the accident, and junked afterwards. These events bring up the issue of destruction of evidence; for that, Mary would like to file legal claims against the insurance company of her car, for trashing the car before she could be able to file charges and sue the car manufacturer for faulty brakes. Destruction of evidence; spoliation as it is known, has different statutes that govern it in different states of the United States of America. As a result, of this, it is extremely vital that the client knows what she is dealing with before taking the first step towards legal justice. Rules The state of Michigan has several rules the govern situations of destruction of evidence. The Tort of Spoliation is one of the rules applicable in this scenario. Under this law, the state of Michigan does not recognize destruction of evidence as a separate tort. Panich v. Iron Wood Prods. Corp., 445 N.W.2d 795 Mich. Ct. App. (1989). Michigan considers destruction of evidence – if the correct facts are available - as an actionable tort claim. Wilson v. Sinai Grace Hosp., 2004 WL 915044 Mich. App. LEXIS (2004). Another rule applicable in spoliation of evidence case is presumption or adverse inference. In Michigan, destruction of evidence is governed by a jury instruction, M. Civ. J.I.2d 6.01(d). This provides that a person trying the case facts may infer the evidence that has not been offered in this case might be injurious to the offending party if (1) such evidence is/was under the control of the offending party; (2) the offending party could have produced such evidence; or (3) there is no reasonable grounds to support failure for disclosure of such evidence. A permissible inference is allowed when these three features are shown. The inference is such that the evidence would have been injurious to the offending party. The person trying the case facts, however, is free to determine this issue for itself. Lagalo v. Allied Corp., 592 N.W.2d 786, 789 Mich. Ct. App. LEXIS (1999). In cases where evidence of willful destruction exists, it is presumed that the evidence that was not produced may have been injurious to the offending party. When it has been left un-rebutted, a conclusion that such evidence may have been injurious to the offending party is required for this presumption. Trupiano v. Cully, 84 N.W.2d 747, 748 Mich. (1957). In general, failure of a party to produce evidence or deliberate destruction of evidence by a party is presumed by courts that such evidence may have worked against the party responsible for its destruction or its non-production. Johnson v. Secretary of State, 406 Mich. 420, 440, 280 N.W.2d 9 Mich. (1979); Berryman v. K Mart Corp., 193 Mich. App. LEXIS 88, 101, 483 N.W.2d 642 Mich. (1992); Ritter v. Meijer, Inc., 128 Mich. App. LEXIS 783, 786, 341 N.W.2d 220 Mich. (1983). Therefore, in Michigan, such a presumption can only arise when the complaining party is able to establish that there was intentional, fraudulent conduct, and a desire for destruction of evidence with the aim of suppressing the truth. Trupiano v. Cully, 349 Mich. 568, 570, 84 N.W.2d 747 Mich. (1957), quoting 20 Am. Jur., Evidence, § 185, p. 191; see also Lagalo v. Allied Corp., 233 Mich. App. 514, 520, 592 N.W.2d 786 Mich. (1999). Analysis In this case, it is factual that Mary Jane Plaine was driving at a considerable acceptable speed when she was involved in an accident. It is also a fact that the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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