VanSingel’s landowners bill approved by House

LANSING — Legislation sponsored by Rep. Scott VanSingel, R-Grant, which will give property managers more flexibility in determining attorney representation in legal disagreements, was approved by the House on Tuesday.

VanSingel’s bill allows a limited liability company (LLC) to be represented by the owner with direct knowledge of the property during a legal proceeding, such as a small property dispute. The bill specifies several requirements to allow the attorney requirement for such proceedings to be waived.

“This bill helps the small property owners that we have in northwest Michigan, who may have one or two buildings under their management, by allowing the option of legal representation but not requiring it,” VanSingel said. “Hiring an attorney for a minor disagreement can be very expensive for a small limited liability company, especially if we’re talking about a case over a few hundred dollars.”

VanSingel was joined by Kevin Tucci, property manager at Peak Properties LLC in Big Rapids, in speaking before the House Law and Justice Committee earlier this year. The committee approved the bill on May 30.

“Let the property owners decide what to do when it comes to hiring an attorney,” VanSingel said. “Nobody will know their properties or their tenants like they do. Instead of requiring representation, we’re allowing them to decide on their own what is best for their business and their property.

House Bill 4463, VanSingel’s first bill of the 2017-18 session, advances to the Senate for its consideration.