attorney portrait

ATTORNEY AT LAW

Don Fulkerson

Biography

Don has worked with members of the firm in numerous property insurance cases that have established legal precedent protecting the rights of policyholders in cases against property insurance companies.  These include being lead appellate counsel with Michael Fabian in Griswold Properties, LLC v. Lexington Ins. Co., 276 Mich. App. 551 (2007) (Where the Michigan Court of Appeals held that policyholders may recover 12% penalty interest under M.C.L. 500.2006 when the insurer fails to pay the claim within 60 days after receipt of satisfactory proof of loss without having to prove that the claim was not reasonably in dispute.), White v. State Farm Fire & Casualty Co., 293 Mich. App. 419 (2011) (Holding that an insured’s public adjuster is qualified to serve as an appraiser – protecting the rights of policyholder’s during appraisal proceedings.), and Scottsdale Ins. Co. v. Altman Mgt. Co., 832 Fed. Appx. 998 (6th Cir. 2021) (Holding that an insurer’s delay in paying the claim that increases the policyholder’s recovery of business income damages is a question of fact for the appraisal panel – not a question of law that a court must determine before appraisal may proceed.); as lead appellate counsel with Patrick King in PrimeOne Ins. Co. v. Grand Trumbull, LLC, No. 20-1498; 2021 WL 3414170 (6th Cir. Aug. 5, 2021) (Preventing insurance companies from substantially reducing the insured’s recovery in property insurance claims by holding that the co-insurance percentage in an actual cash value claim is calculated based on the actual cash value of the property – not, as the insurance company argued, based on the property’s replacement value.), and Palmer Park Square, LLC v. Scottsdale Ins. Co., 878 F.3d 530 (6th Cir. 2017) (where the court ruled that a policyholder has six years to file suit to recover penalty interest under M.C.L. 500.2006); and as lead appellate counsel with Jason Liss in Batton-Jajuga v. Farm Bureau Gen. Ins. Co. of Mich., 322 Mich. App. 422 (2017) (Increasing the ability of families to recover replacement cost damages in a property insurance claim, the court ruled that insureds may “replace” damaged property by acquiring a new home under a land contract.).

Don serves on the Amicus Committee for the Michigan Association for Justice.  He has written, or co-written, amicus briefs in numerous cases resulting in jurisprudentially significant Michigan Supreme Court decisions – most recently Kandil Elsayed v. F & E Oil, Inc., 512 Mich. 95 (2023), where the Supreme Court overruled Lugo v. Ameritech Corp., Inc., 464 Mich. 512 (2001) and reinstated premises liability law in the State of Michigan.

Don served on the Appellate Practice Section Council from 1995 to 2006, and was Section chair in 2002-2003.

Don co-chaired the Michigan Circuit Court Appellate Rules Revision Committee which drafted the new subchapter 7.100 of the Court Rules. He has served on the Michigan Court of Appeals Record Production Task Force, Delay Reduction Work Group, and Court of Appeals Case Management Work Group.  Don also was a member of the Michigan Court Reporting and Recording Board of Review.

Don has served as President of the Michigan Center for Civic Education and on its Board of Directors.  For over 30 years, he has written, instructed, and actively worked in the field of civics and law-related education. In 2001, he received the Mary S. Coleman Award “For outstanding contributions to civic education.”  In 2012, he was honored by the Michigan Legislature with a Special Tribute “For outstanding contributions to the Michigan Center for Civic Education.”

He has been named a “Super Lawyer” by Thomson/Reuters every year since 2011 and a “Top Lawyer” by dbusiness in 2011 and 2019.

Don graduated with high honors from Wayne State University and with honors from the University of Minnesota Law School.  He also attended the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome, Italy.  He was a legal writing and appellate advocacy instructor at the University of Minnesota Law School and an adjunct professor of legal writing at the University of Detroit Law School.