|Case Forum:||Michigan Supreme Court|
|Keywords:||Open Meetings Act (OMA), attorneys fees, closed meeting|
Brad A. Banasik | General Counsel Michigan Association of School Boards | 1001 Centennial Way Suite 400 | Lansing, MI 48917 | 517-327-5929
1. Michigan Association of School Boards (MASB)
The Defendants violated the Open Meetings Act by failing to take closed session minutes. Closed meeting minutes have little or no value to the public or a public body. Because public bodies are prohibited from making a “decision” in a closed meeting, MCL 15.263(2), the minutes of such meetings are traditionally brief and include very little substance. The minutes
At issue in this case is whether a pro se litigant, who is also an attorney, may recover “court costs and actual attorney fees,” MCL 15.271(4), after he or she brings a successful action under the Open Meetings Act. We conclude that because an attorney is defined as an agent of another person, there must be separate identities between the attorney and the client before the litigant may recover actual attorney fees. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment of the Court of Appeals that held to the contrary, and remand to the trial court for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.
|MSC requested LDF amicus brief?||Yes|
Torger Omdahl, an attorney proceeding in propria persona, sued his former client, the West Iron County Board of Education, for violations of the Open Meetings Act (OMA), MCL 15.261 et seq. The trial court granted judgment for Omdahl, ruling that the board violated the OMA by failing to take minutes at two closed sessions. However, the trial court denied Omdahl’s request for attorney fees. Omdahl appealed.