Phillip J DeRosier

Phillip J. DeRosier

Member
Phillip DeRosier is a member in the firm’s Detroit office, where he specializes in state and federal civil appeals. Phil has more than 15 years’ experience representing industry-leading corporations, banks, insurance companies, and individuals in the Michigan Supreme Court, Michigan Court of Appeals, and several United States Courts of Appeals. Phil has successfully handled a wide variety of complex appellate matters, ranging from commercial contracts to insurance to business torts. With a strong background in research and brief writing, he also provides valuable litigation services and trial support.

Phil is a past Chair of the governing Council of the State Bar of Michigan's Appellate Practice Section. He was named “Detroit Lawyer of the Year 2018 – Appellate Practice” by Best Lawyers in America and is consistently recognized in Michigan Super Lawyers, Best Lawyers, and DBusiness Top Lawyers in the areas of appellate practice and litigation. Before joining the firm, Phil served as a law clerk for Michigan Supreme Court Justice Robert P. Young, Jr., and was a staff attorney at the Michigan Court of Appeals.

Education & Credentials

Education

Michigan State University

B.A., 1993
  • With Honors

Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School

J.D., 1996
  • magna cum laude

Bar Admission

  • Michigan1996

Acknowledgements

  • Best Lawyers in America "Detroit Lawyer of the Year 2018 - Appellate Practice"
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Rated
  • Listed in Michigan Super Lawyers, Appellate Litigation
  • Listed in Best Lawyers, Appellate Practice
  • Listed in DBusiness Top Lawyers, Appellate Law 
  • Recipient of the Thomas M. Cooley Law Review's Distinguished Brief Award, 2009

Representative Clients

  • American Axle & Manufacturing, Inc.
  • AT&T Michigan
  • FCA US LLC
  • Ford Motor Company
  • JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A.
  • MGM Grand Detroit, LLC
  • Michigan's Largest Health Care Company and Insurance Subsidiaries
  • The Dow Chemical Company

Prominent Assignments

  • Successfully represented a national auto supplier before the Michigan Court of Appeals, resulting in a published opinion upholding the dismissal of a municipality’s breach of contract claim for lack of ripeness.
  • Convinced the Michigan Court of Appeals and Michigan Supreme Court to uphold the dismissal of claims against a Michigan public university for alleged violations of the Open Meetings Act.
  • Obtained a decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirming the district court's decision to vacate a $15 million jury verdict on a quasi-contractual claim brought under New York law.
  • On behalf of a national bank, obtained a peremptory reversal from the Michigan Supreme Court in a case in which the Michigan Court of Appeals imposed requirements for commencing a foreclosure by advertisement that went beyond the language of the governing statute.
  • Convinced the Michigan Supreme Court to reverse a judgment enforcing a purported settlement agreement, as there was no evidence that the parties had actually agreed to its essential terms. 
  • Defeated class certification in two consolidated lawsuits alleging that hundreds of homes experienced basement flooding due to a claimed defect in the city's sewage system.
  • Successfully represented Michigan’s largest health insurance company in an interlocutory appeal before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, which reversed the district court’s order certifying a class of multiemployer health and welfare benefits funds alleging violations of ERISA and Michigan law. 
  • Successfully represented a casino before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, which upheld the dismissal of a lawsuit brought by Michigan horse racing tracks seeking to invalidate a provision of the Michigan Constitution that limits the expansion of casino gaming in the state.
  • Represented one of the world’s largest chemical companies in a matter of first impression before the Michigan Supreme Court, obtaining an opinion establishing the standards in Michigan for certifying class actions.
  • Represented a telecommunications provider in obtaining an opinion from the Michigan Supreme Court overturning a fine imposed by the Michigan Public Service Commission and rejecting U.S. Supreme Court precedent requiring deference to agency interpretations of statutes.
  • Represented a health insurer in the Michigan Supreme Court, obtaining an opinion affirming the Michigan Insurance Commissioner's decision to uphold a denial of coverage for unauthorized medical services.
  • Prevailed in the Michigan Supreme Court for an automotive manufacturer in a case of first impression finding no duty to protect against "take home" asbestos exposure. As a result, a $9.5 million judgment was overturned.
  • Successfully represented a hospital in a case before the Michigan Supreme Court in which the Court reversed a $30 million medical malpractice verdict and clarified the requirements in Michigan for the admission of expert testimony.
  • Prevailed in the Michigan Supreme Court on behalf of an automotive supplier, convincing the Court to reject an appeal by its insurance company seeking to overturn a $7.5 million default judgment resulting from discovery abuses in a coverage dispute.
  • Obtained a published opinion from the Michigan Court of Appeals on behalf of an automobile insurer affirming the dismissal of a class action alleging illegal insurance premiums and finding the law at issue to be unconstitutional.
  • Represented an automobile manufacturer in a bankruptcy appeal seeking to recover over $100 million in automotive tooling.
  • Represented a national investment banking firm in obtaining an opinion from the Michigan Court of Appeals upholding the dismissal, on forum non conveniens grounds, of claims arising out of a $50 million sale of municipal bonds.
  • Successfully defended an employer in a garnishment action that resulted in a published opinion from the Michigan Court of Appeals deciding an issue of first impression under the federal Consumer Credit Protection Act.
  • Successfully represented a national IT company in convincing the Michigan Court of Appeals to affirm the dismissal of various claims arising out of a $31 million stock purchase.
  • Convinced the Michigan Court of Appeals to affirm the dismissal of a lawsuit brought against an automotive supplier arising out of the failed sale of one of its manufacturing plants.
  • Obtained an opinion from the Michigan Court of Appeals upholding the dismissal of minority shareholder oppression and fraud claims arising out of a shareholder dispute.

Professional Involvement

  • 2016 Michigan Appellate Bench Bar Conference, Secretary and Session Reporter
  • State Bar of Michigan Appellate Practice Section, Council Member and Past Chair
  • 2013 Michigan Appellate Bench Bar Conference, Secretary and Session Moderator
  • Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Detroit (Class XXXIV) 
  • 2010 Michigan Appellate Bench Bar Conference, Secretary and Session Moderator 
  • Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association, Chair of the Appellate Practice Section 
  • 2007 Michigan Appellate Bench Bar Conference, Planning Committee 
  • 2004 Michigan Appellate Bench Bar Conference, Session Reporter

Community Involvement

  • Pro bono representation of clients in civil litigation and criminal appeals

Experience

  • Law Clerk to the Hon. Robert P. Young, Jr., Michigan Supreme Court, 1999-2001; Michigan Court of Appeals, 1997-1999
  • Staff Attorney, Michigan Court of Appeals, 1996-1997

Publications/Presentations

  • Co-Author, "Appellate Practice Report," Michigan Defense Quarterly (Volume 35, No. 2 - 2018). The report addresses the Michigan Court of Appeals' newly-adopted rules governing exhibits and the appealability of dismissals "without prejudice." 
  • Co-Author, "Appellate Practice Report," Michigan Defense Quarterly (Volume 35, No. 1 - 2018). The report addresses the determination of when an order is "final" for purposes of appeal and the ability of parties to stipulate to the dismissal of a case while reserving issues for potential future appeals. 
  • Co-Author, "Appellate Practice Report," Michigan Defense Quarterly (Volume 34, No. 4 - 2018). The report addresses the effect of delayed or non-service of a judgment or order on the appeal deadline, as well as sharing oral argument with co-parties.
  • Co-Author, "Appellate Practice Report," Michigan Defense Quarterly (Volume 34, No. 3 - 2018). The report addresses e-filing in the United States Supreme Court and jurisdictional vs. non jurisdictional appeal deadlines. 
  • Co-Author, “Appellate Practice Report,” Michigan Defense Quarterly (Volume 34, No. 2 - 2017). The report addresses the Michigan Supreme Court’s use of “mini oral arguments” when deciding applications for leave to appeal, as well as the history and current status of the “absurd result” doctrine in Michigan.
  • Co-Author, “Appellate Practice Report,” Michigan Defense Quarterly (Volume 34, No. 1 - 2017). The report addresses judicial review of arbitration awards under Michigan’s Uniform Arbitration Act and judicial assignment in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.
  • Co-Author, “Appellate Practice Report,” Michigan Defense Quarterly (Volume 33, No. 4 - 2017). The report examines civility in briefing and the effect of post-judgment motions on the time to appeal. 
  • Co-author, “Michigan Supreme Court Holds That An Insurer’s Untimely Payment Of Underinsured Motorist Benefits Is Subject To Penalty Interest Even If Reasonably In Dispute,” Dickinson Wright Client Alert, May 2017 
  • Co-Author, “Appellate Practice Report,” Michigan Defense Quarterly (Volume 33, No. 3 - 2017). The report discusses the use of checklists for briefing and argument, the effect of unresolved attorney fee motions on the finality of a judgment for purposes of appeal, and important amendments to the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure.
  • Michigan Appellate Handbook (ICLE, 2013), Chapter 6, "Interlocutory and Other Discretionary Review in the Court of Appeals"
  • Moderator, "Preparing to Win on Appeal Before Trial," 2013 Annual Meeting of the Michigan Defense Trial Counsel
  • Judicial Review of Arbitration Awards Under Federal and Michigan Law: Similar But Different, Michigan Bar Journal, February 2013, Volume 92, No. 2
  • Moderator, "Preservation and Presentation of Issues on Appeal," 2012 Annual Meeting of the State Bar of Michigan Appellate Practice Section
  • Court's Decision Extends Copyright Protection to Foreign Works, DRIToday – The Court Reporter (January 19, 2012)
    http://www.dritoday.org/commentary.aspx?ID=157
  • Michigan Civil Procedure (ICLE, 1999; rev. 2011), Chapter 13, Dispositive Motions
  • Regular Contributor to the Michigan Defense Trial Counsel's Michigan Defense Quarterly, "Appellate Practice Report" 
  • Understanding the Overrulings: A Response to Robert Sedler, 56 Wayne L. Rev. 1761 (2010) 
  • Bankruptcy Appeals: The Basics, NABTalk, Journal of the National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees, Spring 2011 
  • Speaker, "Your First Oral Argument in the Court of Appeals," Michigan Defense Trial Counsel's (MDTC) Young Lawyers Section Breakfast Seminar, August 12, 2010 
  • Speaker, "Law School for Journalists," Society of Professional Journalists - Detroit Chapter, October 10, 2009 
  • The "Ins and Outs" of Electronic Filing in the Sixth Circuit, Michigan Appellate Practice Journal, Spring 2009, Vol. 13 No.1 
  • The Nuts and Bolts of Bankruptcy Appeals, 87 Mich B J 30 (July, 2008) 
  • Speaker, "The Role of the Supreme Court Law Clerk," 2001 Michigan Appellate Bench Bar Conference
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