If you have made it to the point where a hearing official (either a Referee or a Judge) hears argument, evidence or takes testimony, that means that the parties were unable to come up with a solution on their own and the hearing official has been forced to make a decision on your behalf. It is VERY common for neither party to "like" a decision made by a Judge, so it's very important that you have a strategic attorney that can work with you to determine an appropriate strategy for your case to get the best outcome possible. An experienced attorney will know what a likely ruling may be based on the facts of your case and the hearing official and can guide you to achieving the best result possible.
What if you tried everything and your case still went to a hearing, you've received a decision, and you don't like it? The best thing to do is to immediately contact an attorney that can tell you what options you may have. Some of the options are described below, however, depending on your case, may or may not be available in your circumstances.
Motion for Rehearing or Reconsideration: MCR 2.119(F) guides a Motion for a new hearing or reconsideration of a decision made by the Court. This must be filed 21 days after the entry of an Order deciding a Motion. There is no oral argument and no response to be filed by the other party, unless the Court requests it. A Judge will usually review the Motion and issue a written decision.
This should not be filed if you are merely presenting the same issues already ruled on by the Court. The moving party must demonstrate a palpable error by which the Court and the parties have been misled and show a different disposition of the motion must result from correction of the error.
De Novo Review: This circumstance happens usually when a Referee has made a decision and you have the opportunity to request a de novo review in front of a Judge supervising the case. This must be filed within 21 days of the Referee decision and a hearing is often scheduled, although it may not be and the Judge may just issue an Order adopting the Referee Recommended Order. See an attorney that practices in your county as different courts handle these procedures differently. A Judge can make the same decision the Referee made, change the decision completely or modify the decision.
Appeal: If the above have failed, you can also seek appellate review of your case. An appeal is a lengthy and expensive process, so it is best to discuss your case at length with an attorney that handles appellate cases to determine how best to proceed.
Ultimately, it is important to have an attorney that can best prepare you for likely outcomes in your case and work with you to achieve the best possible result. Attorney Allison Greenlee Korr handles cases in Kalamazoo, Battle Creek and all surrounding counties, call today for a consultation.269-381-4471