July 30, 2020

A divided Michigan Supreme Court has ruled that residents and property owners in Flint, Michigan, alleging harm by lead-tainted water can proceed with their proposed class action against former Gov. Rick Snyder, various state bodies and the city's two former emergency managers.

The plaintiffs can continue to pursue claims related to injuries and harm to property following a ruling Wednesday in which a majority of justices could only agree to sustain the property-related allegations. The justices were split on the fate of a state constitutional claim that officials violated the plaintiffs' right to bodily integrity, which means the lower court's decision will stand, allowing the claim to proceed. 

"There is obviously no legitimate governmental objective in poisoning citizens," according to the lead opinion. "Plaintiffs' allegations, if true, are so egregious and outrageous that they shock the contemporary conscience and support a finding of defendants' deliberate indifference to plaintiffs' health and safety."

The complete article can be accessed here.

Cohen Milstein is Interim Co-Lead Counsel in this consolidated environmental toxic tort class action filed on behalf of Flint, Michigan residents and businesses harmed by exposure to toxic levels of lead and other contaminants in the city’s drinking water.

Cohen Milstein’s team is led by Theodore J. Leopold, and includes Alison Deich, Emmy L. Levens, Kit A. Pierson, Joseph M. Sellers and Jessica Weiner.