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In this public records request matter, the Supreme Court held that the Nevada Public Records Act requires the Public Employees’ Retirement System of Nevada (PERS) to disclose certain employment and pension payment information held in its computer database about its government retirees where the requested information merely requires searching a database for existing information, is readily accessible and not confidential, and the alleged risks posed by disclosure do not outweigh the benefits of the public’s interest in access to the records. In the instant matter, the district court required disclosure of the requested information. The Supreme Court held (1) PERS failed to demonstrate the requested information was confidential by statute; (2) the risks posed by the disclosure did not clearly outweigh the benefits of the public’s interest in access to the records; and (3) the requested information did not require the creation of a new record. The Court remanded for the district court to determine an appropriate way for PERS to comply with the request where the computer database may no longer be able to produce the information as it existed when the public records request was made. View "Public Employees’ Retirement System of Nevada v. Nevada Policy Research Institute, Inc." on Justia Law

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In this matter where the adoptive family of a young child sought to have Nev. Rev. Stat. 432B.550(5)(a)’s rebuttable presumption that a dependent child’s placement with a sibling is in the child’s best interes- applied in determining the out-of-home placement of her biological baby sister, the Supreme Court granted in part Petitioners’ petition for extraordinary relief, holding that adoption does not preclude application of the legislative presumption that placing siblings together is in a child’s best interest. Amy Mulkern, the adoptive mother of Baby’s biological half-sister, Vivian Mulkern, was a willing and approved placement option for Baby. The Clark County Department of Family Services (DFS), however, determined that Baby had bonded with and should remain with her foster parents, who were also willing to adopt. Amy sought relief in the district court dependency proceeding. The district court determined that Vivian’s adoption severed the sibling relationship such that section 432B.550(5)(a)’s sibling presumption did not apply. The Supreme Court granted Amy and Vivian’s petition for extraordinary relief, holding that because Amy was the mother of Baby’s biological sister, the rebuttable sibling presumption applied. View "Mulkern v. Eighth Judicial District Court" on Justia Law

Posted in: Family Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed a district court order denying a pro se plaintiff’s (Plaintiff) motion to set aside the judgment under Nev. R. Civ. P. 60(b) that was filed five months and three weeks after the court dismissed Plaintiff’s case, holding that the district court’s decision was not an abuse of discretion. Plaintiff sued Fiesta Palms, LLC (Defendant) for injuries he sustained at the Fiesta Palms sportsbook. Plaintiff appeared pro se at several hearings. The district court eventually granted Defendant’s motion to dismiss in an order stating that Defendant’s motion was unopposed and therefore deemed meritorious. Five months and three weeks later, Plaintiff moved to set aside the district court’s order of dismissal pursuant to Rule 60(b), recounting his efforts to obtain legal representation. The district court denied relief. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the district court did not abuse its discretion in denying relief to Plaintiff, an unrepresented litigant who knowingly neglected procedural requirements and then failed promptly to move for relief. View "Rodriguez v. Fiesta Palms, LLC" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court reversed the district court’s dismissal of Plaintiff’s lawsuit, holding (1) the tooth injury that Plaintiff sustained during an emergency hysterectomy was not “directly involved” or “proximate” to her hysterectomy that required an endotracheal intubation to safely anesthetize her; and (2) therefore, Plaintiff was not required to attach a medical expert’s affidavit to her complaint. Plaintiff’s tooth injury was allegedly caused by the actions of an anesthesiologist who performed an endotracheal intubation on Plaintiff. Plaintiff sued the anesthesiologist and the hospital where she received the hysterectomy to recover for damages to her tooth. Defendants moved for summary judgment, arguing that the complaint must be dismissed pursuant to Nev. Rev. Stat. 41A.071 because it was not accompanied by a supporting affidavit from a medical expert. The district court concluded that the section 41A.071 affidavit requirement applied to all of Plaintiff’s claims and dismissed her case. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that dismissal of Plaintiff’s suit was unwarranted. View "Dolorfino v. University Medical Center of Southern Nevada" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the district court ruling that the parties in this case were joint tenants with equal ownership interests in certain property, taking the opportunity of this case to clarify that the presumptions from Sack v. Tomlin, 871 P.2d 298 (Nev. 1994), concerning tenants in common apply to joint tenants. Elizabeth Howard and Shaughnan Hughes jointly applied for credit in anticipation of purchasing a home. Howard used the proceeds from a third-party settlement award to purchase the property and then executed a quitclaim deed naming herself and Hughes as joint tenants. During their ownership, Howard contributed in excess of $100,000 to the property, while Hughes contributed approximately $20,000. Hughes later filed a complaint to partition the property. The district court concluded that Howard and Hughes were joint tenants with equal ownership interests in the property. The Supreme Court agreed, holding (1) the district court correctly interpreted and applied the presumptions from Sack and Langevin v. York, 907 P.2d 981 (Nev. 1995); and (2) Hughes presented sufficient evidence of Howard’s donative intent at trial, thereby rebutting the secondary presumption that the parties did not own the property equally. View "Howard v. Hughes" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the order of the district court sanctioning a party for discovery violations and finding that the party’s attorneys violated Nevada Rule of Professional Conduct (RPC) 3.3(a)(1) by making a false statement of fact or law to the court, holding that the district court acted within its discretion when it sanctioned the party for violating Nev. R. Civ. P. 16.1. The Court further concluded that a district court’s citation to the RPC in support of a determination of attorney misconduct causes reputational harm that amounts to a sanction and that the district court correctly determined that the attorneys violated RPC 3.3(a)(1). Lastly, although the attorneys were not provided sufficient notice that their conduct was under review, any notice deficiencies were subsequently cured by the attorneys’ motion for reconsideration. View "Valley Health System, LLC v. Estate of Jane Doe" on Justia Law

Posted in: Legal Ethics

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The Supreme Court denied Petitioner’s petition for writ of certiorari, holding that Nev. Rev. Stat. 177.015(1)(a) authorizes the State to file an appeal to the district court form a justice court decision dismissing a criminal complaint that charged felony and/or gross misdemeanor offenses. The State filed a criminal complaint against Petitioner charging felony and gross misdemeanor offenses. The justice court subsequently dismissed the complaint. The State then filed an appeal to the district court from the criminal complaint’s dismissal. Petitioner moved to dismiss the appeal, arguing that the district court lacked jurisdiction. The district court denied the motion and determined that the justice court erred in dismissing the complaint. Petitioner then filed this original petition challenging the district court’s jurisdiction over the State’s appeal. The Supreme Court denied the petition, holding that the district court did not exceed its jurisdiction in entertaining the State’s appeal. View "Warren v. Eighth Judicial District Court" on Justia Law

Posted in: Criminal Law

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At issue in this civil lawsuit was whether a stipulation to a discovery schedule that expressly waived the usual requirement that written reports be produced and exchanged summarizing the anticipated testimony of all expert witnesses designated to appear at trial continued when the district court entered a scheduling order that extended the deadline of identifying expert witnesses but said nothing about whether the stipulation to waive expert reports continued in effect or not. The Supreme Court held (1) the intent of the parties controlled the duration and scope of the stipulation; and (2) in the absence of any intention that the stipulation be deemed to have been superseded by the new order, the stipulation should be read to continue in effect until and unless expressly vacated either by the court or by a subsequent agreement between the parties. View "Dechambeau v. Balkenbush" on Justia Law

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In this appeal and cross-appeal from a final judgment in an action arising from the purchase of real property, the Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part the judgment of the district court, holding that Nevada law has not recognized implied restrictive covenants based on a common development scheme, and the Court declines to adopt the doctrine based on the record. Appellant purchased a residential lot adjoining Respondent’s residential lot (the Lot). The Lot also adjoined a golf course and included a small parcel of land that had previously been an out-of-bounds area between the golf course and the property. The Supreme Court (1) affirmed the district court’s determination that Appellant cannot maintain an implied restrictive covenant upon the out-of-bounds parcel because the Court declines to recognize implied restrictive easements; (2) reversed the judgment of the district court that Appellant waived any claims it may have had against a real estate company, real estate agent, and developer for misrepresentations or failure to disclose information in the purchase process of the property; and (3) reversed the award of attorney fees and costs. View "Rosenberg Living Trust v. MacDonald Highlands Realty" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant’s conviction for larceny from the person stemming from his act of stealing a cell phone from a woman sitting next to him at a bus stop, holding that the evidence was sufficient to support the conviction even where the woman voluntarily handed Defendant her phone. On appeal, Defendant argued that he did not take the phone “from the person of another, without [her] consent,” and therefore, the State failed to prove its case. The Supreme Court disagreed, holding that the evidence was sufficient to support the conviction where the State provided evidence that Defendant asked to borrow the woman’s cell phone with the ulterior motive of stealing it, that when the woman extended her arm to hand Defendant her phone, Defendant grabbed it from her, and that after the woman stood to follow Defendant, and he ran. View "Ibarra v. State" on Justia Law

Posted in: Criminal Law