Case: Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service v. Flint Community Schools

2:15-cv-12470 | U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan

Filed Date: July 10, 2015

Closed Date: Jan. 30, 2022

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

This is a case about a Protection and Advocacy (P&A) agency’s records access authority concerning education records for students with disabilities in public school settings. On July 10, 2015, Michigan P&A Service filed lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. Michigan P&A filed this lawsuit against Flint Community Schools (Flint), which operates Flint, Michigan’s public school system, under the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act (DD Act)…

This is a case about a Protection and Advocacy (P&A) agency’s records access authority concerning education records for students with disabilities in public school settings. On July 10, 2015, Michigan P&A Service filed lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. Michigan P&A filed this lawsuit against Flint Community Schools (Flint), which operates Flint, Michigan’s public school system, under the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act (DD Act), the Protection and Advocacy of Individual Rights Act (PAIR Act), and the Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness Act (PAIMI Act). Represented by itself, Michigan P&A sought injunctive relief that required Flint provide them with educational records they could review to ensure Flint complied with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (Section 504), and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Judge David M. Lawson presided over this matter. 

Michigan P&A received calls from multiple parents of students with disabilities in Flint operated schools with questions about available services and procedures. After obtaining authorization from the student’s parents, Michigan P&A requested records from Flint concerning the educational services and individual plans in question, but Flint refused. Michigan P&A received some records they requested by filing due process complaints under 20 U.S.C. § 1415 of the IDEA on behalf of these students.

In November 22 2015, the court granted Michigan P&A’s Motion for Summary Judgment, and required that Flint provide Michigan P&A with all the records they requested under the DD, PAIR, and PAIMI Acts. The court also granted Michigan P&A a Permanent Injunction that required Flint provide them with all future records requested under the DD and PAIR Acts within three business days, and all requests under the PAIMI Act within five business days. Flint argued that the P&A could not receive all the records they requested because they were not covered by the IDEA and that P&A needed to exhaust all available administrative remedies under the PAIMI Act.  The court explained that while the P&A received certain records through IDEA due process complaints, these were on behalf of the individuals and distinct from the P&A sought records under their enabling authorities. Therefore, the IDEA procedures were not available to P&As, so PAIMI Act exhaustion requirements did not apply.

Flint appealed this decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. In January 2017, the parties reached a settlement agreement that required Flint provide Michigan P&A with records requested under the DD, PAIR, and PAIMI Acts within 12 days of the request. The settlement also provided the P&A with $75,000 in attorney’s fees. In February 2017, the court dismissed the pending appeal and the case closed. 

Summary Authors

NDRN (3/18/2023)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4292738/parties/michigan-protection-and-advocacy-service-inc-v-flint-community-schools/


Attorney for Plaintiff

Dembs, Bradley J. (Michigan)

Attorney for Defendant

Berg, Frederick A. (Michigan)

Dausman, Pamela C. (Michigan)

Mandel, Scott L. (Michigan)

Miller, Donald B. (Michigan)

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Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document
1

2:15-cv-12470

Complaint

Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc. v. Flint Community Schools

July 10, 2015

July 10, 2015

Complaint
5

2:15-cv-12470

Plaintiff's Motion for Preliminary Injunction and Memorandum in Support of its Motion for Preliminary Injunction

Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc. v. Flint Community Schools

July 13, 2015

July 13, 2015

Pleading / Motion / Brief
23

2:15-cv-12470

Opinion and Order Granting Plaintiff's Motion for Preliminary Injunction

Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service v. Flint Community School

Nov. 23, 2015

Nov. 23, 2015

Order/Opinion
35-1

2:15-cv-12470

Settlement Agreement

Michigan P&A Svc v. Flint Community School

Dec. 2, 2016

Dec. 2, 2016

Settlement Agreement
35

2:15-cv-12470

Notice of Settlement

Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service v. Flint Community School

Dec. 2, 2016

Dec. 2, 2016

Pleading / Motion / Brief

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4292738/michigan-protection-and-advocacy-service-inc-v-flint-community-schools/

Last updated Feb. 3, 2024, 3:05 a.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link Date / Link
1

COMPLAINT filed by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc. against Flint Community Schools, Larry Watkins, Jr. Plaintiff requests summons issued. Receipt No: 0645-5242540 - Fee: $ 400. County of 1st Plaintiff: Ingham - County Where Action Arose: Genesee - County of 1st Defendant: Genesee. [Previously dismissed case: No] [Possible companion case(s): None] (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 07/10/2015)

July 10, 2015

July 10, 2015

Clearinghouse
2

STATEMENT of DISCLOSURE of CORPORATE AFFILIATIONS and FINANCIAL INTEREST by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc. (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 07/10/2015)

July 10, 2015

July 10, 2015

PACER
3

SUMMONS Issued for *Flint Community Schools* (SOso) (Entered: 07/10/2015)

July 10, 2015

July 10, 2015

PACER
4

SUMMONS Issued for *Larry Watkins, Jr* (SOso) (Entered: 07/10/2015)

July 10, 2015

July 10, 2015

PACER

A United States Magistrate Judge of this Court is available to conduct all proceedings in this civil action in accordance with 28 U.S.C. 636c and FRCP 73. The Notice, Consent, and Reference of a Civil Action to a Magistrate Judge form is available for download at http://www.mied.uscourts.gov (SOso)

July 10, 2015

July 10, 2015

PACER
5

MOTION for Preliminary Injunction and Memorandum in Support of its Motion for Preliminary Injunction by All Plaintiffs. (Attachments: # 1 Index of Exhibits Index, # 2 Exhibit A, # 3 Exhibit B, # 4 Exhibit C, # 5 Exhibit D, # 6 Exhibit E, # 7 Exhibit F, # 8 Exhibit G, # 9 Exhibit H, # 10 Exhibit I, # 11 Exhibit J) (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 07/13/2015)

1 Index of Exhibits Index

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2 Exhibit A

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3 Exhibit B

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4 Exhibit C

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5 Exhibit D

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6 Exhibit E

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7 Exhibit F

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8 Exhibit G

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9 Exhibit H

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10 Exhibit I

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11 Exhibit J

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July 13, 2015

July 13, 2015

Clearinghouse
6

NOTICE OF HEARING on 5 MOTION for Preliminary Injunction. Motion Hearing set for 9/17/2015 at 2:00 PM before District Judge David M. Lawson. (SPin) (Entered: 07/22/2015)

July 22, 2015

July 22, 2015

PACER
7

CERTIFICATE of Service/Summons Returned Executed. Flint Community Schools served on 7/20/2015, answer due 8/10/2015. (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 07/22/2015)

July 22, 2015

July 22, 2015

PACER
8

CERTIFICATE of Service/Summons Returned Executed. Larry Watkins, Jr served on 7/20/2015, answer due 8/10/2015. (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 07/22/2015)

July 22, 2015

July 22, 2015

PACER
9

CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE re 6 Notice of Hearing on Motion by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc. (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 07/23/2015)

July 23, 2015

July 23, 2015

PACER
10

NOTICE of Appearance by Scott L. Mandel on behalf of All Defendants. (Mandel, Scott) (Entered: 07/31/2015)

July 31, 2015

July 31, 2015

PACER
11

NOTICE of Appearance by Pamela C. Dausman on behalf of All Defendants. (Dausman, Pamela) (Entered: 07/31/2015)

July 31, 2015

July 31, 2015

PACER
12

STIPULATION re 1 Complaint,, 5 MOTION for Preliminary Injunction and Memorandum in Support of its Motion for Preliminary Injunction Extension to File First Responsive Pleading and Response to Motion by All Defendants (Mandel, Scott) (Entered: 07/31/2015)

July 31, 2015

July 31, 2015

PACER
13

ANSWER to Complaint with Affirmative Defenses by Flint Community Schools, Larry Watkins, Jr. (Mandel, Scott) (Entered: 08/10/2015)

Aug. 10, 2015

Aug. 10, 2015

PACER
14

RESPONSE to 5 MOTION for Preliminary Injunction and Memorandum in Support of its Motion for Preliminary Injunction filed by Flint Community Schools, Larry Watkins, Jr. (Attachments: # 1 Index of Exhibits, # 2 Exhibit A - Affidavit of Melinda Carroll) (Mandel, Scott) (Entered: 08/10/2015)

Aug. 10, 2015

Aug. 10, 2015

PACER
15

NOTICE TO APPEAR: Scheduling Conference set for 9/17/2015 at 2:30 PM before District Judge David M. Lawson. See image for document deadline. (SPin) (Entered: 08/17/2015)

Aug. 17, 2015

Aug. 17, 2015

PACER

Set Deadlines/Hearings: Hearing on Motion for Preliminary Injunction reset for 9/10/2015 at 2:00 PM; Scheduling Conference reset for 9/10/2015 at 2:00 PM, before District Judge David M. Lawson. (SPin)

Aug. 24, 2015

Aug. 24, 2015

PACER

Set Deadlines/Hearings: Motion 5 Hearing and Scheduling Conference reset for 9/10/2015 at 1:00 PM (TIME CHANGE ONLY) before District Judge David M. Lawson. (SPin)

Aug. 24, 2015

Aug. 24, 2015

PACER
16

REPLY to Response re 5 MOTION for Preliminary Injunction and Memorandum in Support of its Motion for Preliminary Injunction filed by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc.. (Attachments: # 1 Index of Exhibits Index of Exhibits, # 2 Exhibit Exhibit A, # 3 Exhibit Exhibit B, # 4 Exhibit Exhibit C, # 5 Exhibit Exhibit D) (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 08/24/2015)

Aug. 24, 2015

Aug. 24, 2015

PACER
17

STIPULATION re 16 Reply to Response to Motion, For Plaintiff to File Overlength Reply Brief by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc. (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 08/27/2015)

Aug. 27, 2015

Aug. 27, 2015

PACER
18

DISCOVERY plan jointly filed pursuant to Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 26(f) (Mandel, Scott) (Entered: 09/03/2015)

Sept. 3, 2015

Sept. 3, 2015

PACER
19

ORDER Granting Leave to File Excess Pages re 17 Stipulation filed by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc. Signed by District Judge David M. Lawson. (SPin) (Entered: 09/09/2015)

Sept. 8, 2015

Sept. 8, 2015

PACER

Minute Entry for proceedings before District Judge David M. Lawson: Motion Hearing held on 9/11/2015 re 5 MOTION for Preliminary Injunction filed by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc. Disposition: Taken under advisement. (Court Reporter Rene Twedt) (SPin)

Sept. 11, 2015

Sept. 11, 2015

PACER
20

ORDER Setting Deadlines for Submission of Stipulation or Supplemental Briefing. Stipulation due by 9/16/2015; Supplemental briefs due by 9/23/2015. Signed by District Judge David M. Lawson. (SPin) (Entered: 09/11/2015)

Sept. 11, 2015

Sept. 11, 2015

PACER
21

SUPPLEMENTAL BRIEF re 5 MOTION for Preliminary Injunction and Memorandum in Support of its Motion for Preliminary Injunction filed by Flint Community Schools, Larry Watkins, Jr. (Mandel, Scott) (Entered: 09/16/2015)

Sept. 16, 2015

Sept. 16, 2015

PACER
22

SUPPLEMENTAL BRIEF re 21 Supplemental Brief filed by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc.. (Dembs, Bradley) Modified on 9/22/2015 (SOso). [Document titled PLAINTIFF'S REPLY TO DEFENDANTS' SUPPLEMENTAL BRIEF IN OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION]. (Entered: 09/22/2015)

Sept. 22, 2015

Sept. 22, 2015

PACER
23

OPINION AND ORDER Granting Plaintiff's 5 Motion for Preliminary Injunction. Signed by District Judge David M. Lawson. (SPin) (Entered: 11/23/2015)

Nov. 23, 2015

Nov. 23, 2015

Clearinghouse
24

NOTICE OF APPEAL by All Defendants re 23 Order on Motion for Preliminary Injunction. Receipt No: 0645-5480193 - Fee: $ 505 - Fee Status: Fee Paid. (Mandel, Scott) (Entered: 12/22/2015)

Dec. 22, 2015

Dec. 22, 2015

PACER
25

Certificate of Service re 24 Notice of Appeal. (DWor) (Entered: 12/22/2015)

Dec. 22, 2015

Dec. 22, 2015

PACER
26

MOTION proceedings in abeyance while appeal is pending by All Defendants. (Mandel, Scott) Modified on 12/22/2015 (DWor). [DOCUMENT ENTITLED "MOTION TO HOLD DISTRICT COURT PROCEEDINGS IN ABEYANCE PENDING APPEAL"] (Entered: 12/22/2015)

Dec. 22, 2015

Dec. 22, 2015

PACER
27

NOTICE OF HEARING on 26 MOTION to hold proceedings in abeyance while appeal is pending. Motion Hearing set for 2/17/2016 at 2:00 PM before District Judge David M. Lawson. Case Management Conference to follow in Chambers. (SPin) (Entered: 12/29/2015)

Dec. 29, 2015

Dec. 29, 2015

PACER
28

RESPONSE to 26 MOTION proceedings in abeyance while appeal is pending filed by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc.. (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 01/05/2016)

Jan. 5, 2016

Jan. 5, 2016

PACER
29

ORDER Dismissing as Moot 26 Motion to Stay Proceedings Pending Appeal. Signed by District Judge David M. Lawson. (SPin) (Entered: 01/07/2016)

Jan. 7, 2016

Jan. 7, 2016

PACER

TEXT-ONLY NOTICE: Hearing on 2/17/2016 is Cancelled. (SPin)

Jan. 7, 2016

Jan. 7, 2016

PACER

Court Reporter Acknowledgment of Transcript Order Form received on 12/23/2015. Transcript for court proceeding held on: 09/10/2015. Estimated transcript completion date: 01/08/2016. Estimated number of pages: 75. Payment arrangements were made on 12/23/2015. (Twedt, R)

Jan. 8, 2016

Jan. 8, 2016

PACER
30

TRANSCRIPT of Motion for Preliminary Injunction held on 09/10/2015. (Court Reporter/Transcriber: Rene L Twedt) (Number of Pages: 79) (Appeal Purposes) The parties have 21 days to file with the court and Court Reporter/Transcriber a Redaction Request of this transcript. If no request is filed, the transcript may be made remotely electronically available to the public without redaction after 90 days. Redaction Request due 1/29/2016. Redacted Transcript Deadline set for 2/8/2016. Release of Transcript Restriction set for 4/7/2016. Transcript may be viewed at the court public terminal or purchased through the Court Reporter/Transcriber before the deadline for Release of Transcript Restriction. After that date, the transcript is publicly available. (Twedt, R) (Entered: 01/08/2016)

Jan. 8, 2016

Jan. 8, 2016

PACER

TEXT-ONLY NOTICE: Case Management Conference on 2/17/2016 is Cancelled. (SPin)

Jan. 8, 2016

Jan. 8, 2016

PACER
32

Redacted Version of 30 TRANSCRIPT of Motion for Preliminary Injunction held on 09/10/2015. (Appeal Purposes) Release of Transcript Restriction set for 4/7/2016. (Twedt, R) (Entered: 01/27/2016)

Jan. 27, 2016

Jan. 27, 2016

PACER
33

MOTION for Order by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc.. (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 11/18/2016)

Nov. 18, 2016

Nov. 18, 2016

PACER
34

ORDER Granting in Part 33 Motion for Indicative Ruling. Signed by District Judge David M. Lawson. (SPin) (Entered: 11/23/2016)

Nov. 22, 2016

Nov. 22, 2016

PACER
35

Amended MOTION for Order by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc.. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Exhibit A) (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 12/02/2016)

1 Exhibit Exhibit A

View on Clearinghouse

Dec. 2, 2016

Dec. 2, 2016

Clearinghouse
36

ORDER Granting Amended 35 Motion for Indicative Ruling. Signed by District Judge David M. Lawson. (SPin) (Entered: 12/29/2016)

Dec. 29, 2016

Dec. 29, 2016

PACER
37

ORDER from U.S. Court of Appeals - Sixth Circuit re 24 Notice of Appeal filed by Larry Watkins, Jr., Flint Community Schools [Appeal Case Number 15-2573] (Ahmed, N) (Entered: 01/06/2017)

Jan. 6, 2017

Jan. 6, 2017

PACER
38

[STRICKEN PER 01/24/17 ORDER] Joint MOTION for Order to Approve Settlement Agreement by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc.. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Exhibit A, # 2 Exhibit Exhibit B) (Dembs, Bradley) Modified on 1/24/2017 (DPer). (Entered: 01/18/2017)

Jan. 18, 2017

Jan. 18, 2017

PACER
39

ORDER striking 38 Joint motion to approve settlement agreement. Signed by District Judge David M. Lawson. (DPer) (Entered: 01/24/2017)

Jan. 24, 2017

Jan. 24, 2017

PACER
40

Joint MOTION for Order to Approve Settlement Agreement by Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc.. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Exhibit A, # 2 Exhibit Exhibit B) (Dembs, Bradley) (Entered: 01/24/2017)

1 Exhibit Exhibit A

View on RECAP

2 Exhibit Exhibit B

View on PACER

Jan. 24, 2017

Jan. 24, 2017

PACER
41

ORDER Granting Motion to Approve Settlement Agreement and DISMISSING CASE. Signed by District Judge David M. Lawson. (SPin) (Entered: 01/30/2017)

Jan. 30, 2017

Jan. 30, 2017

PACER
42

ORDER from U.S. Court of Appeals - Sixth Circuit re 24 Notice of Appeal filed by Larry Watkins, Jr., Flint Community Schools [Appeal Case Number 15-2573] (Ahmed, N) (Entered: 02/03/2017)

Feb. 3, 2017

Feb. 3, 2017

PACER

Case Details

State / Territory: Michigan

Case Type(s):

Disability Rights

Key Dates

Filing Date: July 10, 2015

Closing Date: Jan. 30, 2022

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

protection and advocacy system

Plaintiff Type(s):

Non-profit NON-religious organization

Attorney Organizations:

NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Flint Community School, School District

Defendant Type(s):

Elementary/Secondary School

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. § 15001 et seq.

Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness (PAIMI) Act, 42 U.S.C. § 10801

Available Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Injunctive (or Injunctive-like) Relief

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Attorneys fees

Source of Relief:

Settlement

Litigation

Form of Settlement:

Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree

Amount Defendant Pays: 75,000

Order Duration: 2017 - 2022

Content of Injunction:

Preliminary relief granted

Issues

Disability and Disability Rights:

disability, unspecified

P&A access authority

P&A Associational Standing