In Ramsey v. Board of Regents of the University of Michigan, the Michigan Court of Appeals dismissed plaintiff’s medical malpractice case for failure to file a Notice of Intent (NOI) within 6 months of decedent’s death. The court ruled based on McCahan v. Brennan, 291 Mich App 430 (2011), (currently on appeal to the Supreme Court), that strict compliance with the statutory notice period is required under MCL 600.6431(3).
The decedent passed away on October 2, 2005. His estate however, failed to file a NOI until July 17, 2009. Plaintiff filed a wrongful death suit against the Board of Regents of the University of Michigan in the Court of Claims on September 24, 2010.
In McCahan, the plaintiff sent a letter to the University of Michigan 5 months after suffering injuries involving a university vehicle. However, the plaintiff did not file the NOI with the Court of Claims for almost 12 months after the accident. The court held that since the NOI was not filed within 6 months of the alleged injuries, as required by MCL 600.6431, the plaintiff could not plead avoidance of governmental immunity.
As the Michigan Supreme Court has yet to rule on McCahan, the court in Ramsey was required to follow the ruling of the appellate court, dismissing the plaintiff’s claim in avoidance of governmental immunity for failing to file the NOI within 6 months.