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He previously served as council member of the Probate and Estate Planning Section of the State Bar of Michigan and as a member of the Executive Committee of the Kent County Family and Children's Coordinating Council.
The Probate Court is a Court of statutory jurisdiction, primarily concerned with the protection of incapacitated or mentally ill individuals and their assets, and the proper transfer of assets at death. The Probate Court is a Court of statutory jurisdiction, primarily concerned with the protection of incapacitated or mentally ill individuals and their assets, and the proper transfer of assets at death. The Probate Court hears petitions for hospitalization for mentally ill individuals alleged to be a significant danger to themselves or others.He is a chapter author of Michigan Probate Litigation: A Guide to Contested Litigation, 2nd Ed., a contributor to the Michigan Probate Benchbook, associate editor of Inter-Com, a journal publication of the Michigan Probate Judges Association and was a contributor to the drafting of the Michigan Trust Code.In 2014, Judge Murkowski was the recipient of the Judicial Contributions in Law and Aging Award by Elder Law of Michigan and was elected as a Fellow of the Michigan State Bar Foundation.He specialized in criminal defense, juvenile neglect and delinquency and probate law, and served as managing partner of Dilley, Dilley, Murkowski & Goller until 2006 when he was appointed to the Kent County Probate bench to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of the Honorable Janet A. In December of 2007, the Michigan Supreme Court appointed Judge Murkowski to serve as the Chief Judge of the Kent County Probate Court commencing January 1, 2008.Judge Murkowski currently serves on the Executive Board of the Michigan Probate Judges Association and as a member of the Judicial Council of the Judicial Section of the State Bar of Michigan.