e-Journal Summary

e-Journal Number : 34898
Opinion Date : 02/13/2007
e-Journal Date : 02/21/2007
Court : Michigan Court of Appeals
Case Name : Zuschnitt v. Pfeiffenberger
Practice Area(s) : Personal Protection Orders
Judge(s) : Per Curiam - Kelly, Davis, and Servitto
Full Text Opinion

Motion to terminate petitioner’s personal protection order (PPO); Pickering v. Pickering; Pobursky v. Gee; Kampf v. Kampf; Whether the trial court abused its discretion in amending the petition to conform to the proofs; Weymers v. Khera; Browder v. International Fid. Ins. Co.


The trial court properly denied the defendant’s motion to terminate petitioner’s PPO. Petitioner and respondent were divorced after 10 years of marriage. Two daughters were born of the marriage. Four days before petitioner filed the petition for the PPO, the parties were in court for a hearing regarding visitation of their children. However, at the hearing, petitioner did not make any allegations the respondent had stalked or threatened her. Respondent argued the PPO should never have been entered because petitioner made false allegations of stalking in the petition and failed to disclose her prior PPOs were terminated by court action. In addition, respondent claimed the trial court should not have given weight to respondent’s fiancé’s prior PPO against him because it was also dismissed. Petitioner’s petition for a PPO set forth several allegations of conduct by respondent interfering with her personal liberty or causing a reasonable apprehension of violence. The trial court found some of petitioner’s allegations were unsupported by the evidence, and others caused some concern. The court held this was a close case where both parties lacked credibility, as acknowledged by the trial court. However, the trial court ultimately determined respondent’s issues with drug use outweighed petitioner’s false allegations, and the court deferred to the trial court’s determination of who was less credible. Upholding the PPO fell within the range of reasonable and principled outcomes, so the trial court did not abuse its discretion. Affirmed.

Full Text Opinion