Court Rules Michigan Cannot Sue to Block Indian Casino

The Supreme Court has released a 5-4 ruling that stops Michigan from suing to block an off-reservation casino. (Image: Wikimedia Commons)

The rules casinos that are governing by Native American tribal groups are varied and complex, depending on both federal laws and the compacts signed between states and the tribes that reside within them. This plays out in legal battles throughout the country, including the one that ended up being simply settled in the highest court associated with land.

The Supreme Court of the United States ruled this week that Michigan cannot sue a tribe to stop the opening and operation of a casino that is indian as tribal sovereign immunity overrules the state’s legal challenges. Your decision was a divisive one, as the justices were split 5-4 in support of the Bay Mills Indian Community.

Off-Reservation Casino at Heart of Case

The truth revolved around a casino that the Bay Mills tribe built in 2010 about 90 miles south of its reservation, that will be located on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The tribe had purchased land there with money it received as part of money utilizing the government over allegations they gave up in 19th century treaties that they had not been properly compensated for land.

As the casino was constructed on off-reservation land, Michigan had argued that its operation was at violation of their state compact and without permission through the state or federal governments.


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