75292 Winters vs. Dist. Ct. (Dennis)

Date: Tuesday, October 16, 2018 1:30 PM
Duration: 00:30:00 hour(s)

Location: Las Vegas


Avis and Dan Winters filed a civil complaint for forfeiture of proceeds from their daughter’s life insurance policy, alleging that she died under suspicious circumstances and that her husband, Gregory Brent Dennis, was a culpable actor in her death. After the Winterses and their counsel retained a public relations firm and disseminated unpublished discovery material, and the Winterses’ counsel granted interviews to local media in order to, in the words of the district court, “materially prejudice the adjudicative proceeding,” Dennis moved to dismiss the case or disqualify the Winterses’ counsel. The district court denied Dennis’ motion but, finding that the Winterses’ counsel violated Nevada Rule of Professional Conduct 3.6(a), awarded Dennis’ counsel attorney fees for time spent on the matter. Issues: The Winterses seek a writ of mandamus reversing the district court’s orders. The Winterses argue that the district court lacked legal authority to award attorney fees. Dennis argues that the court possessed the necessary authority and, in any case, this court should deny the petition because the Winterses have an adequate remedy in the form of an appeal after a final judgment.