United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
Marylynn Genaw, as Personal Representative of the Estate of Harold Genaw, Plaintiff,
Garage Equipment Supply, Inc., Defendants.
OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING MOTION FOR JUDGMENT ON
F. Cox, United States District Court Judge.
a product liability case. Plaintiff alleges that Defendant
produced a faulty vehicle lift, which caused her
husband's death. Defendant now moves for judgment on the
pleadings. For the reasons below, the Court will grant
Defendant's motion and dismiss this case.
Genaw purchased a “portable light-duty four-post
vehicle lift, ” which was “sold, manufactured,
and designed by” Defendant Garage Equipment Supply.
Pl.'s First Amd. Compl. ¶ 10. On October 2, 2016,
Harold and his son, Jason, attempted to drive a vehicle onto
the lift. Id. at ¶ 11. Justin drove the vehicle
and Harold stood next to the lift, directing his son.
Id. As Justin drove the vehicle onto the lift, the
life “violently and without warning slid across the
garage floor and struck Harold Genaw in the back of the head
causing him to fall to the cement floor, again striking his
head.” Id. at ¶ 12. Harold
“sustained severe injuries, pain and suffering,
emotional distress, shock to the nervous system, mental
anguish, and eventual death.” Id. at ¶
August 27, 2018, Harold's wife, Marylynn Genaw, brought
this action on behalf of his estate. The Complaint has five
counts: (1) negligent production; (2) breach of implied
warranty; (3) gross negligence/actual knowledge; (4) breach
of express warranty; and (5) failure to warn. (ECF No. 11).
April 24, 2019, Garage Equipment filed a motion for judgment
on the pleadings, arguing that Genaw's Complaint lacks
factual allegations sufficient to state any claims. (ECF No.
20). Genaw did not move to amend her complaint in light of
this motion. Instead, Genaw responded, (ECF No. 22), and
Garage Equipment replied. (ECF No. 23). The Court heard oral
arguments on July 25, 2019. At the hearing, Genaw did not
move to amend her complaint. In fact, to date, Genaw has not
moved to amend her complaint.
bring this motion for judgment on the pleadings under Federal
Rules of Civil Procedure 12(c). Rule 12(c) motions are
adjudicated under the same standards as those under Rule
12(b)(6). Lindsay v. Yates, 498 F.3d 434, 437 n.5
(6th Cir. 2007); see also Commercial Money Ctr., Inc. v.
Ill. Union Ins. Co., 508 F.3d 327, 336 (6th Cir. 2007)
(“[A] complaint must contain direct or inferential
allegations respecting all the material elements under some
viable legal theory.”)
12(b)(6) provides for the dismissal of a case where the
complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief can be
granted. The Court must construe the complaint in the light
most favorable to the plaintiff and accept its allegations as
true. DirectTV, Inc. v. Treesh, 487 F.3d 471, 476
(6th Cir. 2007). To survive a motion to dismiss, the
complaint must offer sufficient factual allegations that make
the asserted claims plausible on their face. Bell
Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007).
Legal conclusions couched as factual allegations will not
suffice. Rondigo, LLC v. Township of Richmond, 641
F.3d 673, 670 (6th Cir. 2011). Rather, “[a] claim has
facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content
that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that
the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.”
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009).
Count I (Negligent Production)
have a duty to use reasonable care to produce a product that
is reasonably safe for its intended, anticipated, or
reasonably foreseeable use. Prentis v. Yale Mfg.,
365 N.W.2d 176, 187 (Mich. 1985). To allege a claim for
negligent production, Genaw must plead facts that show (1)
the product was defectively manufactured; (2) the product
reached the plaintiff in the same condition that it was in
when it left the manufacturer; and (3) the defect proximately
caused the plaintiff's injury. Id. at 186;
see also Abdulkarim v. Medtronic, Inc., 2017 WL
6342628 at *1 (E.D. Mich. 2017). Garage Equipment argues that
Genaw has not adequately pleaded either the first or third