The 55th District Court Eviction Diversion Program is a collaborative program between the court and social service organizations to settle landlord/tenant disputes without a court hearing. The goal of the program is to keep tenants in their domicile while getting landlords the money owed to them.
Various social services organizations (Michigan Department of Human Services, Volunteers of America, Capital Area Community Services, Capital Area United Way) and students from the Michigan State University (MSU) Law Clinic work together to see if funding assistance is available to the tenant.
The program is operational on Thursday afternoons when landlord/tenant cases are scheduled to be heard. MSU law students meet with the tenant prior to the hearing and attempt to resolve the matter without the parties having to appear in court. A secondary goal of the program is to educate tenants concerning financial issues in the hope that tenants will be less likely to appear back in court for similar situations.
In short, the program is designed to keep “good” tenants, who are experiencing a financial hardship in their home and get landlords their rent payments.