Damages in Nevada Negligence Cases

Here is a continuing survey of cases and holdings that pertain to damages in Nevada negligence cases. As always, cases are listed in chronological order starting with more recent cases.

An employer may be liable for punitive damages for acts or omissions of its agents if, but only if, (a) principal or managerial agent authorized doing and manner of act; (b) agent was unfit and principal or managerial agent was reckless in employment or retaining him, (c) agent was employed in managerial capacity and was acting in scope of his employment, or (4) principal or managerial agent of principal ratified or approved act. Smith's Food & Drug Centers, Inc. v. Bellegarde, 114 Nev. 602, 958 P.2d 1208 (1998).

Absent injury to person or property, a plaintiff may not recover in negligence for economic loss. Arco Products Co. v. May, 113 Nev. 1295, 948 P.2d 263 (1997); Local Joint Executive Board v. Stern, 98 Nev. 409, 651 P.2d 637 (1982).

Emotional distress can be an element of damage recovered by a direct victim in a negligence cause of action. Shoen v. America, Inc., 111 Nev. 735, 896 P.2d 469 (1995).

When a party negligently damages the property of another, the damage award should be designed to compensate the injured party in full measure for the total harm proximately caused by the defendant's breach of duty. Nelson v. Peckham Plaza Partnerships, 110 Nev. 23, 866 P.2d 1138 (1994).

Economic loss is something other than property damage. Economic losses include lost profits, lost productivity, lost wages, business expectations and other losses that flow from the loss of the things damaged by the defective product. National Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburgh, Pa. v. Pratt and Whitney Canada, Inc., 107 Nev. 535, 815 P.2d 601 (1991).