Welcome to the South Carolina Bar's E-Blast!
May 2, 2013
E-Blast highlights upcoming activities, legal information and links to the Bar's website at www.scbar.org.
Click here for the most recent CLE Edition, which highlights upcoming CLE opportunities.
Looking for new ways to get involved? Committee Sign-Up is underway, and Bar divisions and programs are regularly seeking volunteers. Watch your inbox for the new Get Involved e-mail, which lists upcoming volunteer opportunities, or view the current list online.
Employment and Labor Law Section Council names 2013 Distinguished Lawyer
Congratulations to Fred W. Suggs Jr., winner of the Employment and Labor Law Section Council's 2013 Distinguished Lawyer Award. Mr. Suggs will be honored at the Section's mid-year meeting on May 17.
Court orders rule changes
By order of May 1 the Court adopted Rule amendments submitted to the General Assembly pursuant to Article V, Section 4A of the S.C. Constitution. Two amendments are the result of Bar-sponsored petitions: an order amending Rule 4 of the S.C. Rules of Civil Procedure and Rule 6 of the S.C. Rules of Magistrates Court that will authorize service of process to be made by a qualifying commercial delivery service; and an order amending the S.C. Rules of Criminal Procedure that will add Rule 35, Time, to the Rules of Criminal Procedure. The Court also amended the S.C. Court-Annexed Alternative Dispute Resolution Rules regarding early mediation.
May Bar Foundation grantee activities
While you’re making summer plans, mark your calendars with this month’s grantee events. Follow updates from N. Myrtle Beach High School as it competes in the National High School Mock Trial Competition in Indianapolis or lend a hand during one of this month's help clinics: pro se divorce, wills and estate, general information and more. Visit the Bar Foundation's website for a full list of events that includes dates, locations and persons to contact. Help us so we can help them by giving to the Bar Foundation today.
Advance Sheet update
May 1, 2013
This case was heard May 23, 2012; the original order was filed Dec. 12, 2012. That order was withdrawn, substituted and refiled May 1, 2013. In this administrative action, the S.C. Court of Appeals found, inter alia, that the language of Section 48-2-70 of the S.C. Code of Laws provides that the regulations promulgated under its authority are to enhance DHEC's review process for any permits which require a processing fee, including a water quality certification. Accordingly, the court held that the Administrative Law Court erred in finding, as a matter of law, that Regulation 61-30 had no application to Regulation 61-101, reversed and remanded.
Duke Energy v. SCDHEC, No. 5062, is available online.
In this defamation case, David Castine (David) appealed the circuit court's grant of summary judgment in favor of Frances Castine (Frances). The court affirmed, finding that David was not entitled to the truth defense as a matter of law, because he admitted the statement he made about Frances' improper credit card use was false; that the court did not err in finding David acted with malice; and, in light of David's admission of his intent to harm Frances and get her fired, the circuit court did not err in finding privilege did not exist.
Castine v. Castine, No. 5120, is available online.
Judge Short concurred in result only.
In this criminal appeal, the court reversed and remanded, concluding that the trial court erred in restricting Pradubsri's cross-examination regarding Martin's potential legal exposure prior to her accepting the State's plea offer. That cross-examination should have been allowed pursuant to the confrontation clause because it would have shown a particular bias in Martin's testimony against Pradubsri. Further, the error was not harmless due to the lack of sufficient evidence to find Pradubsri constructively possessed the drugs without Martin's testimony.
State v. Pradubsri, No. 5121, is available online.
Judge Lockemy concurred in part and dissented in part.
In this employment case, the court affirmed the order of the trial court granting the S.C. Department of Corrections' motion to dismiss McNeil's claims for due process violations, public policy discharge and defamation. The Court found that McNeil's general allegations did not support a wrongful discharge action and the trial court did not err in dismissing her cause of action. The court also found the mere fact that McNeil's employment contract had been renewed twice in the past was not sufficient to create a protected property interest in her continued employment.
McNeil v. SCDC, No. 5122, is available online.
Judge Lockemy concurred in part and dissented in part.
The court affirmed the circuit court's finding that Inglese, an attorney, was not entitled to recover from his client, Carl Beal Jr., the $10,000 he paid to his title insurance company pursuant to a subrogation action. The court found that Inglese failed as a matter of law to establish the elements required to recover for both unjust enrichment and equitable indemnity. The court noted that, “When a closing attorney representing the seller does not document in writing the resolution of a judgment lien on his client's property as to which the attorney has actual knowledge, but instead relies only on an oral agreement with the judgment creditor, the attorney does so at his own risk.”
Inglese v. Erickson, No. 5123, is available online.
Judge Pieper concurred in part and dissented in part.
The court reversed and remanded this mortgage case, finding that the master erred in granting the bank partial summary judgment because there was a question of fact as to whether Penza's first mortgage was intended to encumber Tract A in addition to Tract B. The court did not address the issue of mortgage reformation as the decision regarding the encumbrance was dispositive.
Penza v. Pendleton Station, No. 5124, is available online.
The court affirmed Anthony Martin’s convictions for armed robbery and conspiracy to commit armed robbery, finding that, although the trial court erred in refusing to suppress evidence that Martin gave Officer Poythress false identifying information, the error was harmless beyond a reasonable doubt.
State v. Martin, No. 5125, is available online.
In this negligence and inverse condemnation case, the Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court's denial of Orangeburg's motions for directed verdict and JNOV and the jury's award of $165,000 in damages for the Chakrabartis' gross negligence cause of action, as the evidence reasonably supported the jury’s findings. The court reversed the trial court's finding of inverse condemnation and award of damages for inverse condemnation, as the Chakrabartis conceded the issue in their brief.
Chakrabarti v. City of Orangeburg, No. 5126, is available online.
In this medical malpractice action, the court affirmed the decisions of the trial court, finding that the court did not abuse its discretion in allowing the timeline summary and that Gibson did not show he was prejudiced by it. Additionally, the trial court did not err in denying Gibson’s motion for a mistrial, nor did the trial court err in excluding Dr. Wallace's deposition.
Gibson v. Wright, No. 5127, is available online.
Jennings Byford announces the opening of Jennings Byford, PA located at 870 Cleveland St., Unit 1D, Greenville 29601. (864) 331-0111.
Dispute Resolution Section Council Meeting, Conference Call
Unauthorized Practice of Law Committee Meeting, Conference Center
Elder Law Committee Meeting, Bar Building
Employment and Labor Law Section Immigration Law Committee Meeting, Conference Call
Health Care Law Section Council Meeting, Conference Call
Family Law Section Council Meeting, Bar Building
Board of Governors Meeting, Dunes Club, Sullivan's Island
House of Delegates Meeting, Dunes Club, Sullivan's Island
Swearing-In of New Officers, Dunes Club, Sullivan's Island
Animal Law Committee Meeting, Bar Building and Conference Call
Bar Foundation Board Meeting, Bar Building
Probate, Estate Planning and Trust Section Council Meeting, Conference Call
Workers' Compensation Section Council Meeting, Conference Call
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