Nevada Courts Extend Orders Consistent With Governor’s Directive 010

On Friday, April 10, the Nevada Supreme Court issued Administrative Order AO-0013 regarding Nevada courts’ implementation of Governor Steve Sisolak’s Emergency Directive 010, which issued a stay-at-home order and extends the state of emergency to April 30, 2020. Administrative Order Ao-0013 establishes a form order for use by individual courts throughout Nevada. The form makes provisions for the Nevada’s courts to extend their existing administrative orders related to COVID-19 and to address the emergency going forward.

The form order includes the following provisions:

General Provisions:

  • All jury trials are suspended until 30 days after this order is lifted.
  • All non-essential district court hearings will be conducted by video or telephone, decided on the papers, or continued unless otherwise directed by a district court judge.
  • Essential cases and hearings will continue to be heard; in-person hearings are permitted, although appearance by alternative means is encouraged. A list of essential case and hearing types is included in Administrative Order AO-0013.
  • In order to minimize face-to-face contact with the clerk’s office and the public, documents should be e-filed, mailed to the court clerk, dropped off at the filing deposit box, or emailed.
  • Certain persons may be restricted from entering courthouses, consistent with CDC guidelines.

Civil Cases:

  • A lawyer seeking to have the court clerk issue a summons should deliver that summons to the clerk via mail, email, or e-filing.
  • Properly documented service issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic constitute “good cause” for the extension of time to service pursuant to NRCP 4(e).
  • The COVID-19 emergency constitutes “good cause” and “excusable neglect” warranting the extension of time in non-essential civil cases, pursuant to NRCP 6(b).
  • Early cases conferences pursuant to NRCP 16.1, 16.2 and 16.205 should continue to take place but are to be conducted by remote means. If they cannot be accomplished by remote means, they should be rescheduled. The same is true of Rule 16 pretrial scheduling conferences.
  • NRCP 25(a)(1) is tolled during the period that Emergency Directive 010 is in effect.
  • No in-person depositions should proceed, except on stipulation or order. Depositions by remote means may proceed pursuant to NRCP 30(b)(4).
  • The administrative order shall stay trials in civil cases and toll the time for bringing a case to trial for the purposes of NRCP 41(e).
  • Any scheduled non-jury trials in non-essential cases are stayed. Non-jury trials may be rescheduled or conducted by alternative means on order of the court.
  • Non-jury trials and hearings in civil-domestic cases may be conducted by alternative means or continued.

Criminal Cases:

  • In-custody defendants will appear by alternate means when possible.
  • Out-of-custody matters may be decided by or heard at the discretion of the judge if the matter can be heard entirely by alternate means. If not, they will be continued.
  • The time period of any continuance resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic shall be excluded for the purposes of calculating speedy trial time limits under NRS 178.556(1) and NRS 174.511.

Juvenile Delinquency:

  • Subject to constitutional, statutory, and rule requirements, the court will exercise its discretion to determine whether certain types of hearings will be held for in-custody juveniles. When possible, hearings will be conducted by alternate means.
  • All matters where the juvenile is out of custody will be continued.
  • Juveniles in drug court may be required to check in by telephone or otherwise supervised electronically.

Juvenile Dependency and Adoptions:

  • Initial protective custody hearings will continued to be heard as an essential case type.
  • The COVID-19 pandemic is good cause to continue all adjudicatory hearings set under NRS 432B.530 during the next 30 days.
  • Disposition hearings currently set will be decided on the report filed with the court. Supplementary reports may be filed by attorneys and CASA.
  • All semi-annual and annual reviews to be heard during the next 30 days will be decided on the reports submitted by DCFS to the court.  Supplementary reports may be filed by attorneys and CASA.
  • Hearings regarding presumptions will be continued for at least 30 days unless certain circumstances exist as listed in the administrative order.
  • Motions to terminate parental rights may be decided on the pleadings and papers unless the court determines a hearing is required. Hearings will be held in person as essential unless the court approves appearance by alternative means.
  • Termination of parental rights currently in process will be concluded; such trials set for the next 30 days will be continued unless the court determines that compelling reasons exist to hold the trial.
  • Other motions may be decided on the papers or continued. All mediations will be continued for 30 days unless they can be held by alternative means.

For more information, see Administrative Order AO-0013.