Attorney Patterson Wins Case Against the Detroit Land Bank

Sharp v Hillery, et al.

Michigan Court of Appeals Case No. 347893

Detroit homeowners win property back from the Land Bank

On February 25, 2020, The Michigan Court of Appeals ruled against the Detroit Land Bank Authority, a controversial city agency that has come under notorious federal investigation, and in favor of Patterson Justice Counsel and Principal Attorney Tina M. Patterson.

Excerpt from the Michigan Court of Appeals decision that ruled in favor of Attorney Patterson’s argument.

The Court’s ruling restored our clients, Robert and Stacy Hillery, as the rightful owners of property they purchased from the Detroit Land Bank during one of the first publicly held side lot fairs.

The Michigan Court of Appeals upholds the sale of property from the Detroit Land Bank to Attorney Patterson’s client, the Hillerys, and orders the trial court to reinstate them as rightful owners of the property.

After the initial sale of the side lot in 2015, the Hillerys were quickly given the run around by the Land Bank when they inquired about the deed to the property. The Hillerys were not given the deed until 2017, and shortly afterward, they were sued by a neighbor who claimed that she was now entitled to the property after a change in the Land Bank’s side lot policy. Adding insult to injury, the Land Bank also filed suit against the Hillerys, alleging that they misrepresented themselves in the side lot sale.

In 2018, the Wayne County Circuit Court ruled against the Hillerys, who were then unrepresented by counsel, and determined that the Plaintiff neighbor was the rightful owner.

After the Hillerys retained Patterson Justice Counsel for legal representation, Attorney Patterson obtained a dismissal of the suit filed by the Land Bank and preserved an appeal of the lower court ruling that gave title of the lot to the Plaintiff, setting up the hearing before the Court of Appeals on February 7, 2020.

At the Court of Appeals hearing, concerned Detroiters attended in droves, packing the normally vacant courtroom on a snowy Friday morning, and demonstrating the power of an engaged citizenry and the need to show up for cases involving significant matters of public interest.

Finally, the Hillerys received the sweet taste of justice after a long and bitter three years of litigation. However, theirs was only one case, meaning other unresolved cases involving the Land Bank may be out there.

If you have a similar case involving the Detroit Land Bank or other government organization, Make an appointment with Patterson Justice Counsel and Attorney Tina M. Patterson for your consultation today. Don’t rush into decisions without the full and appropriate legal advice and backing.

Tina M. Patterson is the Principal Attorney of Patterson Justice Counsel, PLLC. She is an attorney licensed in the State of Michigan and Federal Court for the Eastern District of Michigan.

To reach Patterson Justice Counsel, Call (313) 385-3720 or email

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