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Azure Manor/Rancho De Paz Homeowners Association v. D.R. Horton, Inc.

United States District Court, D. Nevada

April 2, 2019

AZURE MANOR/RANCHO DE PAZ HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION, Plaintiff,
v.
D.R. HORTON, INC., Defendant.

          ORDER

          JAMES C. MAHAN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Presently before the court is third party defendant ISI Design and Installation Solutions, Inc.'s (“ISI”) f/k/a Creative Touch Interiors, Inc., motion for determination of good faith settlement. (ECF No. 162). No. response has been filed, and the time to do so has passed.

         Also before the court is third party defendant Gilmore Construction LLC's (“Gilmore”) motion for determination of good faith settlement. (ECF No. 167). No. response has been filed, and the time to do so has passed.

         Lastly before the court is third party defendant Quality Wood Products, Ltd.'s (“QWP”) motion for determination of good faith settlement. (ECF No. 168). No. response has been filed, and the time to do so has passed.

         I. Facts

         The instant action is a construction defect lawsuit brought by the homeowners (“plaintiffs”) of a collection of homes against home developer D.R. Horton, Inc. (“developer”) within the Azure Manor/Rancho De Paz subdivision community (“the project”).

         On November 26, 2014, plaintiff initiated this suit in state court. (ECF No. 1). On December 31, 2014, developer removed the action to federal court. Id. Thereafter, developer filed its answer and third-party complaint against its subcontractors, including ISI, Gilmore, and QWP, (collectively, the “subcontractors”) asserting various indemnity claims for the work they produced that contributed to the alleged construction defects. (ECF No. 160).

         ISI supplied and installed carpet, vinyl, and ceramic tile, as well as fireplace surrounds and countertops for the project. (ECF No. 162). Gilmore supplied and installed framing, including window installation, for “at least a portion of” the project. (ECF No. 167). Finally, QWP installed the finish carpentry, including door and trim, for the project. (ECF No. 168).

         After a lengthy period of discovery, developer and each of the subcontractors participated in mediation with a court-appointed mediator to agree upon a fair settlement amount in exchange for release of all claims against the subcontractors. See (ECF Nos. 162, 167, 168).

         The court now considers each of the subcontractors' motions for determination of good faith settlement. Id.

         II. Legal Standard

         Under Nevada law, the determination of whether a settlement is entered in “good faith” under NRS § 17.245 is “left to the discretion of the trial court based upon all relevant facts available.” Velsicol Chemical Corp. v. Davidson, 107 Nev. 356, 811 P.2d 561, 563 (Nev. 1991). The factors discussed in In re MGM Grand Hotel Fire Litigation, 570 F.Supp. 913, 927 (D. Nev. 1983), may be among the relevant facts a court may choose to consider in the exercise of its “considerable discretion.” The Doctors Co. v. Vincent, 120 Nev. 644, 98 P.3d 681, 686-87 (Nev. 2004).

         Such factors include “the amount paid in settlement, the allocation of the settlement proceeds among plaintiffs, the insurance policy limits of settling defendants, the financial condition of settling defendants, and the existence of collusion, fraud or tortious conduct aimed to injure the interests of non-settling defendants.” In re MGM, 570 F.Supp. at 927 (citing Commercial Union Ins. Co. v. Ford Motor Co., 640 F.2d 210 (9th Cir. 1981)). However, Nevada law includes no requirement that a court consider or limit its analysis to the MGM factors or hold a hearing before making a determination of good faith. Velsicol, 811 P.2d at 563.

         III. ...


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