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Law gives extra protection to cities in slip-and-fall cases

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pixabay.com
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It's likely to be harder to sue local governments in Michigan over a fall on a defective sidewalk.

Gov. Rick Snyder this week signed a law that gives local governments some extra protection: the so-called open-and-obvious defense that's long been available to private businesses.

Under the defense, a local government can argue that a defect in a sidewalk or other public property should have been "open and obvious" to the person who was injured.

It can be a tough legal threshold to overcome.

Personal injury lawyers oppose the law.

They say local governments now will be effectively immune to lawsuits and have no incentive to fix broken sidewalks.