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Mass Tort Lawsuit filed on behalf of Mid-Michigan Flood Victims

Posted on: June 3rd, 2020 by Romanucci & Blandin

Legal strategy allows for individual claims based on individual losses

DETROIT, MICHIGAN (June 2, 2020) –  Two nationally recognized personal injury law firms, Ven Johnson Law, PLC, and Romanucci & Blandin, LLC, together announce the filing of lawsuit on behalf of clients that have suffered devastating financial and property loss as the result of the severe negligence of the owners of the Edenville and Sanford Dams, located in Midland and Gladwin Counties, Michigan.  As a result of alleged negligence, the dams overflowed, collapsed and flooded hundreds of homes and buildings in May 2020. 

The defining difference between this legal filing and others for this tragedy which take a class action approach is that this mass tort filing allows individual property owners to be evaluated and compensated on the merits of their own situation, rather than as a “cookie cutter” or one-size-fits-all case.

A mass tort lawsuit was filed June 1, 2020, in the Midland County Circuit Court, in Midland, Michigan. The plaintiffs are homeowners in the cities of Beaverton, Hope and Midland, Michigan. The defendants include: Boyce Trust Hydro Property, LLC; co-trustees William D. Boyce Trust, Lee W. Mueller, Michael d’Avenas, Stephen B. Hultberg and JPMorgan Chase & Co.; Boyce Michigan LLC; and Edenville Hydro Property LLC.

As a direct result of the defendants’ carelessness, negligence, recklessness, and willful indifference to the rights of plaintiffs, the lawsuit seeks an amount to be proven at trial, including, but not limited to, diminution of the value of real property, the cost to repair or replace destroyed real and personal property, loss of business income, loss of profits, plus the value of their lost use and enjoyment of their property.

The May 19, 2020, the failure of the Edenville and Sanford Dams resulted in floodwaters that reach a height of 35 feet or more causing catastrophic damage to downstream areas. 

“This devastating event and the catastrophic consequences suffered by the communities harmed were entirely preventable,” said Ven Johnson, founder, Ven Johnson Law. “The defendants indisputably knew for years that these dams were inadequate, decrepit, unstable, unsafe, and would fail under predictable conditions.”

Since the defendants’ acquisition of the Edenville and Sanford Dams in 2006, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) repeatedly warned that the Edenville Dam was inadequate, unsafe, prone to catastrophic failure, and a major hazard to life and property downstream.  Between the time they first assumed ownership and responsibility for the dam and the present, the defendants refused to pay for much-needed repairs and upgrades, despite knowing that the Edenville Dam could fail at any time.

“As a direct result of the defendants’ carelessness, negligence and willful indifference, our clients have suffered damages as well as anguish and mental anxiety,” said Antonio Romanucci, founding partner of Romanucci & Blandin. “We feel strongly that this mass tort approach is the most beneficial for each client because it allows them each to be treated and compensated individually, rather than lumping them all into a single class.” 

“I was born and raised in Saginaw, Michigan,” said Ven Johnson, founder of Ven Johnson Law. “Mid-Michigan is home. Not only do we need to help ensure flood victims are compensated, we need to be a part of a long-term solution strategy to ensure the dams are repaired and properly maintained so this never happens again.”

To bring justice to those impacted by this devastating flood, Ven Johnson Law and Romanucci & Blandin have partnered to assemble the best team of mass tort, personal injury, and insurance attorneys. This collaboration leverages Ven Johnson Law’s deep relationships in the community along with Romanucci & Blandin’s expertise on high profile, mass tort and class action cases.

A virtual town hall, co-hosted by both law firms, will take place on Thursday, June 4 at 6 p.m. ET for those interested in learning more about this lawsuit.  Please visit https://rblaw.net/practice-areas/midland-michigan-flood/ or https://www.venjohnsonlaw.com/practice/midmichigan-flooding/to sign up to participate in the town hall.

About Ven Johnson Law, PLC

Ven Johnson Law, PLC, founded by Ven Johnson in 2011, is personal injury law firm that has worked on some of the most notable cases in America, winning more than $200 million in jury verdicts and settlements totaling more than $400 Million. The firm specializes in personal injury and has numerous subspecialty practices such as auto accidents, boating accidents, medical malpractice, civil rights, police misconduct, premises liability, product liability and many more. The Detroit, Flint and Grand Rapids based attorneys fight tirelessly to achieve winning results for their clients.  Ven Johnson and his team have been recognized by legal organizations and publications across the country, including being named to the “Best Law Firms” list by U.S. News & World Report 2017-2020.  For more information visit www.venjohnsonlaw.com or call 1-888-VEN- FIGHTS.

About Romanucci & Blandin, LLC

Romanucci & Blandin is a national trial practice committed to fighting for victims of negligence, abuse and wrongful death arising from police misconduct, corporate negligence, civil rights actions, medical malpractice, mass torts and class actions. The attorneys’ steadfast commitment to fighting for those seeking justice around the country has helped the firm obtain multiple verdicts and settlements in the millions of dollars. The Chicago-based personal injury lawyers are dedicated to providing victims who suffered injury as a result of another’s wrongdoing full and fair compensation in a diligent, professional, skilled and caring manner. The lawyers actively support their communities and provide advocacy at the national, state and local levels on issues that support the U.S. tort system. Founded in 1998, Romanucci & Blandin is widely recognized for representing plaintiffs in numerous practice areas including: personal injury, wrongful death, medical malpractice, workers’ compensation, pharmaceutical, mass torts, civil rights, police misconduct, excessive force, aviation, product liability and premises liability.  For more information about Romanucci & Blandin, please visit www.rblaw.net or call (312) 458-1000. 

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