REVISED JUDICATURE ACT OF 1961 (EXCERPT)
Act 236 of 1961
600.2946a Determination of damages; limitation.
(1) In an action for product liability, the total amount of damages for noneconomic loss shall not exceed $280,000.00, unless the defect in the product caused either the person's death or permanent loss of a vital bodily function, in which case the total amount of damages for noneconomic loss shall not exceed $500,000.00. On the effective date of the amendatory act that added this section, the state treasurer shall adjust the limitations set forth in this subsection so that the limitations are equal to the limitations provided in section 1483. After that date, the state treasurer shall adjust the limitations set forth in this subsection at the end of each calendar year so that they continue to be equal to the limitations provided in section 1483.
(2) In awarding damages in a product liability action, the trier of fact shall itemize damages into economic and noneconomic losses. Neither the court nor counsel for a party shall inform the jury of the limitations under subsection (1). The court shall adjust an award of noneconomic loss to conform to the limitations under subsection (1).
(3) The limitation on damages under subsection (1) for death or permanent loss of a vital bodily function does not apply to a defendant if the trier of fact determines by a perponderance of the evidence that the death or loss was the result of the defendant's gross negligence, or if the court finds that the matters stated in section 2949a are true.
(4) If damages for economic loss cannot readily be ascertained by the trier of fact, then the trier of fact shall calculate damages for economic loss based on an amount that is equal to the state average median family income as reported in the immediately preceding federal decennial census and adjusted by the state treasurer in the same manner as provided in subsection (1).
History: Add. 1995, Act 249, Eff. Mar. 28, 1996
Compiler's Notes: In subsection (3), the word “perponderance” evidently should read “preponderance.”
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