Articles Posted in Supreme Court of Nevada

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The Supreme Court reversed the district court's denial of the petition filed by the Nevada Department of Corrections (NDOC) seeking judicial review of a hearing officer's decision to reinstate Brian Ludwick's employment after NDOC terminated Ludwick for a first-time offense, holding that the hearing officer committed legal error in relying on an invalid regulation to set aside Ludwick's termination. The Supreme Court remanded the case, holding (1) the hearing officer erred in relying on a regulation that the State Personnel Commission had not approved as statutorily required; and (2) in light of O'Keefe v. State, Department of Motor Vehicles, 431 P.3d 350 (Nev. 2018), the hearing officer did not properly consider whether Ludwick's actions constituted violations of the valid regulations NDOC charged him with violating and, if so, whether those violations warranted termination as a first-time disciplinary measure. View "State, Department of Corrections v. Ludwick" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the district court's denial of the City of Reno's petition for judicial review of an appeals officer's decision that the City was not entitled to reduce Respondent's lump sum permanent partial disability (PPD) payment, holding that there is no legal basis to justify a workers' compensation insurer's reduction of the twenty-five-percent lump sum payment limit for an employee's PPD award. An injured employee may elect to receive a lump sum payment for a PPD award, but if the employee's PPD rating exceeds a twenty-five percent whole person impairment (WPI), the employee may only elect to receive a lump sum payment for up to twenty-five percent of the rating. Respondent suffered three industrial injuries. With respect to Respondent's third PPD payment, the City offered Respondent an eighteen-percent lump sum payment, believing it could deduct Respondent's two previous PPD lump sum payments from the twenty-five percent limit. A hearing officer found that the City erred. An appeals officer affirmed and district court affirmed. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the appeals officer correctly determined that Respondent was entitled to a lump sum payment for the first twenty-five percent of her most recent WPI rating and PPD award with the remaining eight percent to be paid in installments. View "City of Reno v. Yturbide" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court held that the Labor Commissioner properly determined that the “repair” portion of a maintenance contract is a public work project under Nev. Rev. Stat. 338.010(15), even if the contract is predominantly for maintenance, and is thus not exempt from prevailing wage requirements. This case involved a maintenance contract for an airport shuttle system. The Labor Commissioner determined in this case that because a portion of the work under the contract in this case was repair work, that work was a “public work” project under the statute and thus subject to prevailing wage requirements. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the Labor Commissioner properly determined that twenty percent of the work involved repair rather than maintenance and was thus subject to the prevailing wage, and no exceptions applied that would allow Appellant to forego paying prevailing wages on that portion of the contract. View "Bombardier Transportation (Holdings) USA, Inc. v. Nevada Labor Commissioner" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the district court’s order granting a petition for review of a decision of a hearing officer to reinstate a classified employee after that employee was terminated by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), holding that the hearing officer applied the wrong standard of review. After the DMV terminated the employee’s employment for disciplinary reasons, the employee requested a hearing to challenge the decision. The hearing officer reversed the DMV’s decision to terminate the employee and recommended the lesser discipline of a suspension. The district court granted the DMV’s petition for judicial review and set aside the hearing officer’s decision. The court of appeals affirmed. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) whether the employee violated a law or regulation is reviewed de novo, but the agency’s decision to terminate the employee is entitled to deference; and (2) the hearing officer did not apply that deferential standard in this case. View "O’Keefe v. State, Department of Motor Vehicles" on Justia Law

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At issue was the correct interpretation of Nev. Rev. Stat. 616B.578, under which an employer may qualify for reimbursement on a workers’ compensation claim if the employer proves that it retained its employee after requiring knowledge of the employee’s permanent physical impairment and before a subsequent injury occurs. After noting that the statutory definition of a “permanent physical impairment” must support a rating of permanent impairment of six percent or more of the whole person the Supreme Court held (1) section 616B.578 requires an employer to prove that it had knowledge of a preexisting permanent physical impairment that would support a rating of at least six percent whole person impairment; (2) the statute cannot be reasonably interpreted to require knowledge of a specific medical diagnosis for an employer to successfully seek reimbursement; and (3) in the instant case, because it was unclear whether the employer knew of any permanent condition that hindered the employee’s employment and whether it could be fairly and reasonably inferred from the record that the employer knew of the employee’s preexisting physical impairment supporting a rating of at least six percent whole person impairment, this matter must be remanded for further proceedings. View "North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District v. Board of Administration of Subsequent Injury Account for Associations of Self-Insured Public or Private Employers" on Justia Law

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In this dispute between two labor unions over which entity has the right to represent Clark County School District employees as the exclusive bargaining representative, the Supreme Court affirmed the order of the district court concluding that the Local Government Employee-Management Relations Board exceeded its statutory authority by ordering a second, discretionary, runoff election with a different vote-counting standard, holding that the Board incorrectly interpreted the governing statute and regulation. In the three elections that have occurred since the dispute in this case arose, the challenging union secured a majority of the votes cast but failed to secure a majority of the members of the bargaining unit. After the last election, the Board deemed the challenging union the winner of the election because the union obtained a majority of the votes cast. The Supreme Court affirmed the district court’s order granting the petition for judicial review, holding (1) the vote-counting standard mandated by Nev. Rev. Stat. 288.160 and Nevada Administrative Code 288.110 is a majority of the members of the bargaining unit and not simply a majority of the votes cast; and (2) therefore, the Board’s interpretation of section 288.160(4) and 288.110 as allowing for the use of a majority-of-the-votes cast standard at the runoff election was improper. View "State, Local Government Employee-Management Relations Board v. Education Support Employees Ass’n" on Justia Law

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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 workers’ compensation case, the Supreme Court affirmed summary judgment in favor of Employer, holding that an injury arising from Employer’s failure to provide medical assistance to Employee suffering a stroke arose out of and in the course of the employment, and therefore, Employee’s sole remedy for the injury was workers’ compensation. Employee sued Employer for failure to aid him during the “golden window” of diagnostic and treatment opportunity when he was suffering a stroke. The district court granted summary judgment for Employer, concluding that Employee’s exclusive remedy was workers’ compensation. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that Employee’s exclusive remedy against Employer was workers’ compensation because his injuries occurred in the course of his employment and arose out of his employment. View "Baiguen v. Harrah’s Las Vegas, LLC" on Justia Law

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In this dispute over a noncompete agreement (NCA) the Supreme Court reaffirmed its previous holdings that an NCA must be limited to the geographical areas in which an employer has particular business interests and emphasized that this precedent remains applicable in instances where the NCA imposes a nationwide restriction on the former employee. The Court further clarified that an employer seeking a preliminary injunction enforcing an NCA bears the burden of making a prima facie showing of the NCA’s reasonableness. In this dispute over an NCA, the Supreme Court reversed the district court’s grant of the motion for a preliminary injunction filed by Respondent, an employer, seeking to enforce the terms of a noncompete agreement (NCA) against Appellant, a former employee, holding that Respondent failed to make a prima facie showing that the NCA was reasonable by showing its restrictions did not extend beyond date geographical areas in which Respondent conducted business. View "Shores v. Global Experience Specialists, Inc." on Justia Law

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The Minimum Wage Amendment (MWA) to the Nevada Constitution requires an employer who provides health benefits and pays one dollar per hour less in wages than an employer who does not provide health benefits to provide a benefit in the form of health insurance at least equivalent to the one dollar per hour in wages that the employee would otherwise receive. Employees alleged that their Employer paid them the lower-tier minimum wage without providing sufficient health benefits under the MWA. Employees moved for summary judgment, arguing that the health insurance offered by Employer did not comply with Nevada statutes placing substantive requirements on health insurance. The district court granted summary judgment for Employees, concluding that an employer provides health benefits sufficient to pay the MWA’s lower-tier minimum wage only if the employer offers health insurance that complies with Nev. Rev. Stat. chapter 608, 689A and 689B. The Supreme Court granted Employer’s request for extraordinary relief, holding that an employer is qualified to pay the lower-tier minimum wage if the employer offers a benefit to the employee in the form of health insurance of a value greater than or equal to the wage of an additional dollar per hour. View "MDC Restaurants, LLC v. Eighth Judicial District Court" on Justia Law