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Natasha Landrum Helps Win Nevada Supreme Court Appeal Against Appellants Seeking to Erode Statute of Repose Protections for Contractors

July 29, 2021

Natasha Landrum was recently part of a team of talented defense attorneys who successfully ensured that the Nevada Supreme Court upheld the District Court’s summary judgment decision enforcing Nevada’s statute of repose.  Appellants, a community owner’s association, claimed the District Court got the underlying decision wrong because: (1) the court did not apply the proper standard for “substantial completion”, (2) the statute of repose should not apply to NRS 116 warranty claims, and (3) Appellants were entitled to equitable tolling, equitable estoppel or tolling pursuant to NRS 116.  The court was unconvinced of Appellant’s position.  In a matter of first impression the Supreme Court adopted the “AIA definition of substantial completion as stating the rules of common law for purposes of NRS 11.2055(2).”  The Court rejected Appellants’ attempt to interject the concept of “fitness for intended use” into the definition of substantial completion, using expert testimony to invade the province of the court and redefining the concept to suit their own purposes.  It also agreed that Appellants NRS 116 claims were subject to the statute of repose.  Lastly, the Nevada Supreme Court rejected Appellants’ claims of inequity and refused to apply equitable tolling or estoppel under the conditions at issue.   This matter was filed in 2017, the Appeal was initiated in late 2019, and the attorneys for the defendants worked tirelessly for this result avoiding exposure in the range of tens of millions of dollars on behalf of their clients.

To read the opinion look for Advanced Opinion No. 35 Somersett Owners Ass’n vs. Somersett Dev. Co.,
Ltd. here: