Gordon v. GeigerAnnotate this Case
The district court violated Mother’s due process rights by entering a sua sponte order permanently increasing Father’s visitation with the parties’ minor children and reducing Mother’s custodial time without sufficient notice to Mother. The district court based its order on unrecorded interviews that the judge conducted independently with the parties’ children and an unsubstantiated Child Protective Services report that was not admitted into evidence. The Supreme Court reversed the order modifying child custody, holding (1) the district court’s sua sponte order, which in effect granted Father’s oral request for a change in visitation at an evidentiary hearing, violated due process; (2) a court is required to follow the provisions of the Uniform Child Witness Testimony by Alternative Methods Act set forth in Nev. Rev. Stat. 50.500 et seq.; and (3) the district court erred in this case by disregarding Nev. Rev. Stat. 50.500 et seq. when it decided to interview the children off the record.