In re Fontainebleau Las Vegas Holdings, LLC

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Justia Opinion Summary

This case arose when debtor Fontainebleau Las Vegas Holdings, LLC filed for bankruptcy while seeking to construct and develop and $2.8 billion hotel-casino resort. The U.S. Bankruptcy Court certified questions to the Nevada Supreme Court relating to the viability of equitable subrogation and the enforceability of contractual subordination against mechanic's lien claimants under Nevada's mechanic's and materialman's lien statutes. The Supreme Court answered (1) the doctrine of equitable subrogation does not apply against mechanic's lien claimants, such that a mortgage incurred after the commencement of work on a project will not succeed to the senior priority position of a preexisting lien satisfied by the mortgagee if intervening mechanics' liens exist; and (2) contractual subordination agreements executed by mechanic's lien claimants purporting to subordinate mechanic's liens prospectively are not enforceable, but mechanic's lien claimants may waive their statutorily protected rights when the precise requirements of Nev. Rev. Stat. 108.2457 are met.