Justia Landlord - Tenant Opinion Summaries

Articles Posted in New Mexico Supreme Court
The case revolves around a dispute between Roy Padilla and Ray Torres, where Padilla, the landlord, filed a petition in the metropolitan court under the Uniform Owner-Resident Relations Act (UORRA), alleging that Torres, his tenant, had not paid rent. The metropolitan court ruled in favor of Padilla, ordering Torres to pay past-due rent and costs amounting to $927. Torres appealed this judgment to the Second Judicial District Court, but the appeal was dismissed because Torres had failed to request a recording of the metropolitan court’s trial.The district court held that without a record of the trial, it could not effectively review Torres’s appeal. The court also rejected Torres’s assertion that he had a right to a recording, explaining that Torres, as appellant, was required to provide an adequate record on appeal. Torres then appealed the dismissal to the Court of Appeals, arguing that the metropolitan court’s practice of not recording civil proceedings except on a party’s request was inconsistent with Section 34-8A-6(B) (1993) and violated his state and federal constitutional rights.The Supreme Court of the State of New Mexico held that the failure to record the trial in this matter is contrary to Section 34-8A-6(B) (1993). The court concluded that the statute imposes a duty on the metropolitan court to create a record of its proceedings that will be sufficient to permit appellate review in this case. The court further held that Rule 3708(A) and other similar rules impermissibly conflict with Section 34-8A-6(B) to the extent that the rules condition the creation of this record on a party’s request. The court directed its committee for the Rules of Civil Procedure for the State Courts to correct the rules in conformance with its opinion. Finally, the court reversed and remanded this matter to the metropolitan court for a new trial. View "Padilla v. Torres" on Justia Law