Elements of Nevada's Theories of Liability

Tortious Discharge

Tortious Discharge

Elements

The essence of a tortious discharge is the wrongful, usually retaliatory, interruption of employment by means which are deemed to be contrary to the public policy of this state. D’Angelo v. Gardner, 107 Nev. 704, 718, 819 P.2d 206, 212 (Nev. 1991).

Example Cases

Proof

Damages

Defenses

[A] public policy tort should not be recognized in this case based on the fact that a comprehensive statutory remedy exists. Shoen v. Amerco, Inc., 111 Nev. 735, 896 P.2d 469 (Nev. 1995).

“In Sands Regent v. Valgardson, 105 Nev. 436, 439-40, 777 P.2d 898, 900 (1989), we refused to recognize an action for tortious discharge even though the defendant had violated Nevada’s public policy against age discrimination because the plaintiffs had already recovered tort damages under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), 29 U.S.C. ┬ž 621 and under NRS 613.310. In contrast, in D’Angelo, 107 Nev. at 721-22, 819 P.2d at 218, we held that appellant Jones was entitled to pursue an action for tortious discharge against his employer because we concluded the statutory remedy provided in NRS Chapter 618, dealing with occupational safety and health, was far less comprehensive than the one in Valgardson. The statutory remedy did not allow victims to bring suit to recover tort-type damages for injuries, but simply provided for an action by the administrator of the division of occupational safety and health for reinstatement and past wages, not general damages. Id.” Shoen v. Amerco, Inc., 111 Nev. 735, 896 P.2d 469 (Nev. 1995).

Misc

A public policy tort cannot ordinarily be committed absent the employer-employee relationship, the tort, the wrong itself, is not dependent upon or directly related to a contract of continued employment…. D’Angelo v. Gardner, 107 Nev. 704, 718, 819 P.2d 206, 212 (1991).