Court of Appeals Unpublished Orders
Lafond v. Lafond, No. 82486, Order of Affirmance (Unpublished Disposition, Mar. 9, 2022)
Raphael LaFond (“Raphael”) and Christine LaFond n/k/a Christine Shebeck (“Christine”) divorced in 2017, and per the decree, each was to receive 50% of the bitcoins they’d owned, valued at $80,000. Raphael soon filed a motion to set the decree aside, wishing to modify the child custody holiday schedule, the child support provisions, and for Christine to refinance the vehicle she was awarded in her own name. Christine filed a countermotion requesting an accounting of all the bitcoin accounts and her 50% share immediately, and to set aside the decree asserting that Raphael hadn’t been transparent about the bitcoin management because they were likely worth more than $1 million instead of the $80,000 he’d originally represented. The district court granted Christine’s motion to set aside the provisions regarding bitcoins, concluding that the parties had agreed to share the bitcoins equally, and that though the decree indicated the value of the bitcoins was $80,000, Raphael had misrepresented the true value. Raphael appealed, asserting that Christine had agreed to receiving $40,000 as her share of the crypto community property interest.
The Court ruled that because the decree did not indicate that the parties’ settlement agreement survived the merger into the divorce decree, the district court was correct in considering Christine’s NRCP 60(b) motion. Further based on the district court’s findings, NRCP 60(b) relief was warranted, and there was no abuse in discretion in concluding that Raphael misrepresented the value of the cryptocurrency assets.
Supreme Court Unpublished Orders
Stanton v. Stanton, No. 80910, Order of Affirmance (Unpublished Disposition, Mar. 3, 2022)
This was an appeal and cross-appeal from a district court order setting aside a divorce decree. Dennis Vincent Stanton (“Dennis”) filed for divorce in the Eighth Judicial District Court, but dismissed it after Twyla Marie Stanton (“Twyla”) was determined to have diminished capacity and was appointed legal counsel. A month later, Dennis and Twyla filed for divorce again, and again dismissed the action after their challenge was denied by the same court. They then filed for divorce in the Fifth Judicial District Court, after which Twyla relocated to Arkansas with her parents. Her parents moved to set aside the divorce decree, and afterwards, Twyla and Dennis reconciled and remarried, thus setting aside their divorce decree as a moot issue. Though the court granted this motion, it further entered an order awarding Twyla’s parents attorney fees as sanctions against Dennis for committing fraud by failing to inform the Fifth Judicial District Court about the Eighth Judicial District Court proceedings.
Because Dennis had agreed to set aside the divorce decree at the hearing, he waived any challenge to the district court’s decision to set it aside. Twyla also waived any challenge because her parents, acting as temporary guardians, sought it on her behalf and were successful. The district court still did not abuse its discretion in granting the motion, as there was clear and convincing evidence of fraud upon the court; thus, that part of the order was affirmed. However, the district court did abuse its discretion in sanctioning Dennis because the request for sanctions against him was not made in a separate motion, it was not served on him before it was filed with the district court, and Dennis was not provided with an opportunity to cure the violation. Due to improper procedure, the district court was found to have abused its discretion, and that portion of the order was reversed.