Attorney as Agent

The Writ, Appellate Briefs, April 1, 2018

As attorneys, we are trained and well-versed in representing our clients. Those of us who practice litigation are used to representing parties to lawsuits. However, it becomes a whole different ballgame when the attorney becomes a party. In the recent case of Dezzani v. Kern & Associates, Ltd., 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 9 (March 1, 2018), the Court was faced with the issue of whether an attorney was appropriately named as a direct party to a lawsuit and whether an attorney who represents herself in such a lawsuit is entitled to recover attorneys’ fees and costs. In Dezzani, the Dezzanis owned a condominium in Incline Village. All of the homeowners in that complex were members of the Homeowners’ Association. The Association was represented by local attorney Gayle Kern. In 2013, a dispute arose between the Dezzanis and the HOA regarding a deck built onto the Dezzanis’ unit. As a result of that dispute, with the advice and assistance of its counsel, the HOA issued a Notice of Violation to the Dezzanis. The Dezzanis objected to the Notice. In the process of the dispute, the Dezzanis criticized Kern and sought to have another counsel represent the Association. The Association rejected their request.

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