June 2, 2010

Making it up as they go

I'm glad to see the Family Court system is staffed by the best and brightest:

Family Court officials apparently have been making up the law for the past six months by implementing a policy to seal temporary protection order documents, contrary to state laws that ensure those records remain open and available to the public.

When a reporter went to the Family Court records window and asked for a copy of the temporary protection order application filed by the captain's wife, a clerk explained that all such records were sealed. ...

"It appears somebody decided to preempt the Supreme Court with some administrative policy," said Barry Smith, executive director of the Nevada Press Association. "They don't have the authority to decide something like that." (Emphasis mine)

The confusion arose after a court administrator incorrectly thought a federal law banning the electronic publication of "certain protection order documents" applied to documents in all mediums.

An innocent mistake, but a mistake all the same. More worryingly, had the RJ not uncovered it, the policy would likely still be in effect.