Articles Posted in Nevada Supreme Court

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Corporation obtained a loan from Lenders to help pay for real property that was secured by a deed of trust on the property. Appellant, the principal and sole owner of Corporation, signed a personal guaranty of the loan, which included a waiver of his right to receive notice of any default on the loan. Corporation defaulted on the loan, and Lender purchased the property at a trustee’s sale. Lender then filed a complaint seeking a deficiency judgment from Appellant as guarantor. The district court awarded a deficiency judgment in favor of Lender, concluding (1) Appellant’s waiver of his right to receive a notice of default was invalid pursuant to Nev. Rev. Stat. 40.453; but (2) Lender substantially complied with Nev. Rev. Stat. 107.095’s notice requirement. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the Legislature intended for section 40.453 to invalidate a guarantor’s purported waiver of the right to be mailed a notice of default; and (2) substantial compliance can satisfy section 107.095’s notice requirements. View "Schleining v. Cap One, Inc." on Justia Law

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Petitioner personally guaranteed a commercial real estate loan that Bank purchased. The borrowers defaulted on the loan, and Bank sought recovery of the loan’s balance from Petitioner. While the case against Petitioner was pending, Bank foreclosed and took ownership of the property securing the underlying loan at a trustee’s sale. Bank subsequently moved for summary judgment regarding Petitioner’s liability for his breach of the loan guaranty. Petitioner also moved for summary judgment, arguing that Nev. Rev. Stat. 40.455 precluded Bank from obtaining a judgment for the deficiency on the loan balance after the trustee’s sale. The district court granted summary judgment for Bank. The Supreme Court subsequently issued a writ of mandamus compelling the district court to dismiss the guaranty action against Petitioner, concluding that Bank was barred from recovery under the guaranty because it failed to apply for a deficiency judgment under section 40.455 within six months after the property’s sale. The Supreme Court denied Bank's petition for rehearing because it considered and resolved Bank’s arguments in its order granting mandamus relief and did not misread or misapply the pertinent law. View "Lavi v. Eighth Judicial Dist. Court" on Justia Law

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In this dispute over a real estate transaction, the real party in interest (KB Home) took the deposition of one of Defendants’ principals. During the deposition, the principal testified that he had refreshed his recollection and prepared for the deposition by reviewing two memoranda prepared by his attorneys and his own handwritten notes. When KB Home requested that the principal divulge the contents of the memoranda and notes, however, the principal refused on the grounds that they were privileged. KB Home filed a motion to compel production of the documents. The district court granted the motion, concluding that Nev. Rev. Stat. 50.125 mandates disclosure of any documents used before a deposition to refresh one’s recollection. Defendants sought writ relief from the Supreme Court. The Court denied the petition, holding (1) reviewing a document for the purpose of refreshing one’s memory prior to giving testimony serves as a waiver to the attorney-client privilege under section 50.125; and (2) section 50.125 applies to depositions as well as to in-court hearings. View "Las Vegas Dev. Assocs., LLC v. Eighth Judicial Dist. Court" on Justia Law

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The developer (“Developer”) of a residential community hired a general contractor (“Contractor”) to construct homes in the community, and Contractor subcontracted with Subcontractor for construction services. Subcontractor performed services on several homes, including Appellant’s. Because Subcontractor was not fully paid, it recorded liens on properties within the community, including Appellant’s. Subcontractor filed a civil action against Developer, Contractor, Appellant, and other homeowners, seeking to foreclose on its liens. Appellant filed a cross-claim against Developer and Contractor for breach of contract and seeking to recover attorney fees as damages. The district court denied Appellant’s request to recover attorney fees, concluding that, under the standard set forth in Horgan v. Felton regarding the recovery of attorney fees in cloud-on-title cases, because the breach of contract in this case related to title of real property, and because Appellant failed to allege and prove slander of title, she could not recover the attorney fees that she sought as special damages. The Supreme Court reversed the district court’s judgment to the extent that it denied Appellant’s request for special damages, holding that Horgan did not apply to preclude such recovery in this case. View "Liu v. Christopher Homes, LLC" on Justia Law

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Appellants appealed a district court judgment in a real property contract action. Based on Appellants’ failure to file their opening brief and appendix by the deadline and failure to comply with court rules and directives, Appellants’ appeals were dismissed. Appellants sought the en banc Court’s reconsideration, arguing that the dismissal of their appeals were based on the missteps of their lead appellate attorney, and therefore, the dismissal was contrary to the Supreme Court’s precedent recognizing public policy favoring dispositions on the merits. The Supreme Court denied en banc reconsideration, holding that precedential uniformity did not provide a basis to reinstate these appeals, as the policy was not absolute and must be balanced against countervailing policy considerations such as the public’s interest in expeditious resolution of appeals and judicial administration concerns. View "Huckabay Props., Inc. v. NC Auto Parts, LLC" on Justia Law

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After Appellants purchased condominiums and engaged in related transactions at the Las Vegas Cay Club resort, Appellants filed suit against dozens of defendants, including Cay Clubs, Jeffrey Aeder, and JDI Loans, LLC and JDI Realty, LLC (together, the JDI entities), alleging that Defendants engaged in wrongdoings while abandoning a plan to improve Las Vegas Cay Club and leaving Appellants with “worthless property.” Appellants claimed that they bought the condominiums on the belief that a partnership between Cay Clubs and the JDI entities existed that would provide the expertise and resources to execute the resort’s transformation. Aeder and the JDI entities successfully moved for summary judgment with respect to their liability under Nev. Rev. Stat. 87.160(1), which codifies the partnership-by-estoppel doctrine. The Supreme Court reversed after clarifying the meaning and application of section 87.160(1), holding that the district court erred in granting summary judgment to the JDI entities with regard to their liability under the partnership-by-estoppel doctrine. View "In re Cay Clubs" on Justia Law

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Downing, Thorpe & James Design, Inc. (DTJ) was an architectural firm incorporated in Colorado. Thomas Thrope, one of DTJ’s three founding principals, was allowed to practice individually as a foreign architect in Nevada, but DTJ was not allowed to practice as a foreign corporation in Nevada. In 2004, DTJ contracted with a Nevada developer to provide architectural services for a Las Vegas subdivision owned by Prima Condominiums, LLC (Prima). Prima obtained a loan from First Republic Bank in exchange for a promissory note secured by a deed of trust on one of the subdivision’s units. After Prima defaulted on its payments, DTJ recorded a notice of mechanic’s lien against the property for unpaid services. First Republic then foreclosed and purchased the property. DTJ subsequently brought an action against First Republic for lien priority and unjust enrichment. The district court granted summary judgment for First Republic. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) because DTJ had failed to comply with Nevada’s statutory registration and filing provisions, it was barred from maintaining an action in Nevada for compensation for its architectural services; and (2) Thorpe’s individual status had no bearing on whether DTJ could bring or maintain an action for compensation for its services. View "DTJ Design, Inc. v. First Republic Bank" on Justia Law

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Frank Sorichetti contracted Respondent to buy his property. Sorichetti reneged so Respondent sued and recorded a lis pendens against the property. Due to misinformation about the lis pendens, Countrywide Home Loans, Inc. loaned Sorichetti money secured by deeds of trust against the property. Sorichetti defaulted and Countrywide initiated foreclosure. Respondent sued Countrywide. Countrywide argued that it was entitled to equitable subrogation in amount of the sum that it had paid off in prior loans against the property. Eventually, the case reached the Supreme Court for a second time. In Zhang II, the Court reversed and remanded the case, determining that the district court erred in concluding that Respondent’s lis pendens should not be given priority over Countrywide’s deeds of trust. On remand, Countrywide asked for a decision on its equitable subrogation claim, which the district court declined to give because it was “not given jurisdiction to do so by the Supreme Court.” The Supreme Court subsequently vacated the district court’s judgment in favor of Respondent and remanded with instructions to decide Countrywide’s equitable subrogation claim, holding that the district court erred in failing to resolve the equitable subrogation issue. View "Recontrust Co., N.A. v. Zhang" on Justia Law

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This dispute concerned unpaid homeowners’ association (HOA) dues. The district court concluded that the HOA fees were proper and awarded the HOA the unpaid fees and attorney fees. Appellants appealed. Meanwhile, the HOA successfully sought in the lower court supplemental attorney fees for its counsel’s additional services. The notice of entry of the supplemental attorney fees award was served by mail on August 14, 2012. On January 16, 2013, the district court denied Appellant’s subsequently filed motion to alter or amend the order. On January 30, 2013, Appellants filed a notice of appeal from the supplemental attorney fees award. At issue before the Supreme Court was whether Appellants’ motion to alter or amend the post-judgment order awarding supplemental attorney fees tolled the thirty-day period for filing the notice of appeal. The Supreme Court held that the notice of appeal was timely filed because Nev. R. App. P. 4(a)(4) tolling applied to Appellants’ motion to alter or amend that was directed at the post-judgment order awarding supplemental attorney fees. View "Lytle v. Rosemere Estates Prop. Owners Ass'n" on Justia Law

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David and Kelli Nilsson, who were divorced, held a half interest in certain property in Reno as tenants in common. After the divorce, Kelli and the parties’ children lived on the property, and David lived elsewhere. Several years later, David filed for bankruptcy. On his schedule of real property assets, David claimed an interest in the Reno property as half-owner with Kelli. David then claimed the property as exempt from inclusion in his bankruptcy estate based in part on the homestead exemption. The bankruptcy trustee (Trustee) objected to the claimed exemption because David did not reside on the Reno property, David did not record a declaration of homestead, and David could not now record a valid declaration of homestead on the property. David responded that he could claim the exemption because his children still lived on the property. The bankruptcy court certified a question to the Nevada Supreme Court without ruling on the Trustee’s objection. The Court answered that a debtor must actually reside on real property in order to claim properly a homestead exemption for that property. View "In re Nilsson" on Justia Law