Tuesday, November 10, 2015

For Good


  • A federal jury awarded a Nevada prisoner $28,800 for civil rights violations. The successful lawyer was Travis Barrick working with the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada Pro Bono pilot program. [RJ]
  • A win for the DA's office on preventing the RJ from getting its witness payment records. [RJ]
  • A federal judge(?) ruled the Southern Nevada Regional Housing Authority was in violation of the Fair Housing Act. [RJ]
  • Here's a look at a real estate agent's battle against Bank of America and Nationstar Mortgage. [Vegas Inc.]
  • A reader tells us that today is the annual gathering of some of the legal community's greatest minds and cookie aficionados or, the annual construction defects sweeps hearings. Any juicy gossip coming from that gathering?

18 comments:

  1. The payment of expert deposition fees came up during the bench-bar meeting. (In CD in Nevada, the fees are due 30 days after the court reporter seems out the invoice split by the time each party spent questioning.) Plaintiffs' counsel wanted them paid in advance. Kevin Helm said his carriers had always paid promptly and fully, and he couldn't afford to pay "these whores" in advance.

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    1. This was hilarious. Completely inappropriate, but hilarious.
      Yesterday at the civility CLE, judge Wiese made a comment about the way some women dress in court, something to the effect that "the way some women dress, you can't help but look at them." It was a little awkward.

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    2. The whole "explain to your clients how to dress for court" was awkward. You'd think with two of the panel judges being female, they would have just thought "screw that, I don't care if my marshal / fellow judge gets a woody scoping out the parties, I'm not telling women how to dress or talking about how cleavage distracts the jury to a bunch of attorneys." Nope.

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    3. Could he have been referring to some female attorneys (rather than the clients)? I am regularly dumbfounded by what some wear to court. Just seems to scream 'bad decision making' which is generally not the message an attorney should want to convey to the judge or to a client. Yes, if you dress inappropriately for court, people judge you.

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    4. Judge Wiese is a weirdo. However, I will take him over some of the other winners down at the RJC.

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  2. Hope the real estate agent wins. Tired of the banks in this town getting away with murder.

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    1. Agreed. These thieves need to be taken to task.

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    2. Cannot agree with you more. Wake up judiciary. Stop the crooks from getting away with it, or you will be voted out, and my financial support will go to your opponent.

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    3. I read the Vegas, Inc. article, but I don't think I'm on the agent's side on this one. The first loan was foreclosed and likely wiped out the second, but that doesn't release him from the promissory note. Not exactly good form to pursue borrowers after the security is gone, but also not illegal. BoA also probably didn't "zero out" his loan, but they did probably write it off to the IRS. That also does not relieve him of his responsibility to pay under the note. This guy is a realtor - a sophisticate party. I would expect him to insist on something in writing saying his loan had been cancelled.

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    4. ....aaaaand the case has already been dismissed, with leave to amend the complaint. Amended complaint filed last month and summonses issued 20 days ago. Should be another motion to dismiss coming any moment.

      This kind of suit is filed literally every day in Las Vegas. They usually have no merit, like this one. I'm not sure why Vegas, Inc. seized on this story. Dude is going to lose in the end.

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    5. I agree completely with 5:22

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    6. It is naive to think a real estate agent is a sophisticated party. I cannot tell you how many attorneys and other highly educated people were ripped off by Wells Fargo and other banks with their home loans and being wrongfully foreclosed on.

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    7. Real estate agents don't know anything except how to show a house, use a cookie cutter purchase contract, and hound lenders about when the appraisal is coming in or when docs are going out.

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  3. Most of the attorneys on this blog are civil practitioners who are accustomed to the disclosure rules and discovery in civil cases. No such rules exit in criminal. There is no automatic/mandatory rules of discovery. The Brady rule requires disclosure of exculpatory evidence such as whether a victim or witness identified someone else. The witness payments falls in gray matter. It is common for prosecutors to pay for a victim or witness travel or accommodations to secure their appearance.

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  4. I'm not a criminal practitioner so I could be completely off base here, but if there's evidence at all in a criminal case isn't it incumbent on a prosecutor (who is subject to special ethical considerations) to disclose everything? Is our DA's office so desperate to throw people in jail that they have to hide evidence? Prison industrial complex much?

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    1. NRS 174.234  Reciprocal disclosure of lists of witnesses and information relating to expert testimony; continuing duty to disclose; protective orders; sanctions.

      NRS 174.235  Disclosure by prosecuting attorney of evidence relating to prosecution; limitations.

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    2. Well, yes, there are statutes, ethical rules and case law. Here's what happens:
      Court: Why was this material not turned over to the defense?
      Prosecutor: I looked around the office and I didn't see it; or The Gang Unit had it and didn't give it to me; or I thought I gave it to them; or they could have found it themselves.
      Court: Oh, OK, go and sin no more. Motion/PC petition/ Motion for New Trial Denied.

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    3. And that's in State Court. Federal Court? Brady? You mean that family with six mongrels and a dog named Tiger? Never heard of it. Doesn't apply to us. Doesn't apply to us until 3 days before trial. Oh wait....you mean you wanted EVERYTHING? No no, we don't have time to selectively go through the file and take out what we don't want you to see under our definition of "everything."
      Court: That is not a sin. That is how we do business up here so we don't get Claiborne'd.

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