News + Press

July 12, 2012

July 06, 2012

Welcome to the South Carolina Bar's E-Blast! 
July 12, 2012
E-Blast highlights upcoming activities, legal information and links to the Bar's website at
here for the most recent CLE Edition, which highlights upcoming CLE opportunities.

Board of Governors meets
The Board of Governors met today via conference call. Convention sites for years 2015 (Columbia) and 2016 (Charleston) were approved. The Board also approved the creation of an Animal Law Committee; interested persons should contact Charmy Medlin at The Board received reports on the availability and process for distribution of court appointment funding and the responses to the governor's veto of the Judicial Department information technology budget.

Judicial vacancies
The Judicial Merit Selection Commission is accepting applications for the judicial offices listed on 
this media release. Correspondence and questions should be directed to the Judicial Merit Selection Commission: Jane O. Shuler, Chief Counsel, P.O. Box 142, Columbia, SC 29202, (803) 212-6629. The Commission will not accept applications after noon on Thursday, Aug. 9. For more information, click here

Worker's Compensation Commission survey
The Bar has implemented the first of a bi-annual survey of Workers’ Compensation Commissioners to provide feedback and evaluate performance based on the experiences of those who have practiced before them. The survey has been distributed to members of the Bar's Workers' Compensation Section.

S.C. Bar Foundation awards $1.89 million in grants
Every day we see people help one another: doors opened for strangers, money placed into needy hands and food prepared for hungry souls. Through Bar Foundation grantees, people are given aid in other ways–the elderly are protected from fraud, men are given the tools necessary to succeed as fathers, and youth are inspired to become active and responsible citizens. This year, the Foundation is awarding $1.89 million in grants to 
18 organizations whose missions connect South Carolinians with legal education, assistance and services that they need. Foundation support is made available through the IOLTA program as well as donor support. Please help us so we can help them.

New publication release
The S.C. Bankruptcy Practice Manual, Revised Second Edition by Jan M. Baker, C. Jennalyn Dalrymple and Lydia A. Eloff
The S.C. Bankruptcy Practice Manual, Revised Second Edition (2012) discusses the basic tenets of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code and features helpful practice tips specifically tailored for practice in South Carolina. This helpful how-to manual also includes a user-friendly CD containing the entire book with hypertext links to local and federal rules.

New Ethics Advisory Opinion issued
The Ethics Advisory Committee has issued a new opinion. The text of all opinions is available 
12-10 The lawyer who represented a client (now deceased) against her spouse in a prior action should produce items to the spouse, who is acting as the executor of the client’s estate, only to the extent that the lawyer can determine that the deceased client or the probate court specifically authorized release to the spouse. Any other information should not be released absent a court order.

Introducing the OfficeMax Partner Advantage
The Bar has teamed up with OfficeMax® to introduce the OfficeMax Partner AdvantageSM program. Members will enjoy savings of 31 to 88 percent off the manufacturers’ list price on the most frequently purchased items, a five percent discount on more than 12,000 products in the OfficeMax net priced catalog (excludes all paper products) and discounts on certain ImPress® print and document services. Start saving today on office supplies, furniture, technology and printing services. For more information on OfficeMax Partner Advantage, call (800) 248-6343 or e-mail

PMAP–Your guide to …
Getting paid. Guiding client expectations regarding fees at the outset is extremely important to ensuring you get paid at the end of the case. By clearly stating your payment policy in your client engagement letter, you greatly increase your chances of getting paid once the work is complete. Keeping an accurate record of the time spent on each task and billing at regular intervals can also reduce the time you have to spend trying to collect unpaid fees. For more in-depth advice on how to make sure the invoices you send out get paid, check out
this article from Attorney at Work. For free practice management advice, call (803) 799-6653, ext. 183 or e-mail

Advance Sheet update
July 11, 2012
The S.C. Supreme Court affirmed the Appellate Panel of the Workers' Compensation Commission, holding that the shooting and killing of a suspect by a deputy sheriff while on duty was not an "unusual or extraordinary" employment condition such that mental injuries arising from that incident are compensable under the Workers' Compensation Act.
Bentley v. Spartanburg County, No. 27140, is available online.
Justice Hearn dissented in a separate opinion in which Justice Beatty concurred.

In this action for defamation based on a statement by the chief banking officer for First Reliance Bank, the Court affirmed the circuit court’s ruling of summary judgment in favor of the respondents, finding that the statement made by the banking officer to Pennell regarding Fountain’s credit history was not defamatory, and even if it was, the respondents were protected by a qualified privilege.
Fountain v. First Reliance Bank, No. 27141, is available online.

The Court affirmed the trial court's admission of both a tape recording between the appellant and the victim and a forensic interview tape. The Court opined that the S.C. Legislature intended the consent provision in the Wiretap Act to encompass the vicarious consent of a parent on behalf of a minor child. Additionally, there was evidence at the suppression hearing from which the Court of Appeals could conclude that the parent had a good faith and objectively reasonable basis for recording the phone conversation. The Court found no error in the trial court's admission of the forensic interview videotape, as it offered no improper testimony and included no bolstering testimony that would invade the province of the jury.
State v. Whitner, No. 27142, is available online.
Justice Pleicones concurred in a separate opinion in which Acting Justice Eugene C. Griffith concurred.

The Court affirmed the circuit court's denial of the appellants' motion to stay the proceedings and compel arbitration as the appellant failed to offer sufficient evidence that the transaction involved interstate commerce to subject the parties' agreement to the Federal Arbitration Act.
Bradley v. Brentwood Homes, No. 27143, is available online.

In this civil action, the S.C. Court of Appeals reversed and remanded the decision of the circuit court. The court erred in admitting the temporary injunction order into evidence and in admitting the expert’s written report and its attachments to the extent that the written report included the preliminary injunction order. The court found that the remainder of the expert’s testimony did not prejudice the appellants.
Allegro v. Scully, No. 4997, is available online.

In this appeal arising out of a contract for the conveyance of real property, the court affirmed the trial court’s order. The court found, inter alia, that the appellants abandoned the issue of unfair trade practices, making only conclusory arguments in their brief and failing to cite any law or authority in support of their argument; the trial court properly granted summary judgment on the claim of abuse of process because the appellants failed to present evidence meeting the essential elements of an abuse of process claim; and the argument for malicious prosecution was abandoned on appeal as the appellants summarily argued that the trial court erred in finding their claim was not ripe, but failed to cite any law or authority in support of their argument.
D.R. Horton v. Wescott Land Company, No. 4998, is available online.
Judge Pieper concurred in a separate opinion.

In this declaratory judgment action, the court affirmed the special referee's order, which concluded that the appellant's predecessor in title granted an appurtenant easement across her property to the prior owner of an adjoining parcel. The deed as a whole showed the grantor's intent to convey an appurtenant easement and did not impose an unreasonable burden on Steedley's property.
Proctor v. Steedley, No. 4999, is available online.

The court affirmed the order of the special circuit court judge compelling arbitration of a dispute involving an alleged breach of contract. The alleged breach resulted from Harrelson Nissan, Inc.'s (Harrelson) failure to obtain credit life insurance in connection with the lease of an automobile. The court concluded that the lease between Walden and Harrelson did not create a duty to insure, and therefore, the Federal Arbitration Act governs the lease and compels arbitration.
Walden v. Harrelson Nissan, No. 5000, is available online.

Readmission hearing scheduled
The Committee on Character and Fitness will conduct a hearing on August 17 on the petition for readmission of W. Benjamin McClain Jr.

Trustees appointed
By order of June 27 M. Elizabeth Crum and John Wesley Crum III have been appointed to assume responsibility for the law practice of David H. Crum.

In memoriam
John Jennings Kerr, 66, of Isle of Palms died July 4, 2012. His obituary can be found

Mary Ruth McCutcheon Baxter, 69, of Conway died July 9, 2012. Her obituary can be found

Firm announcements
Jessica Brilhante announces the opening of Brilhante Law Office, LLC located at 10 Pinckney Colony Rd., Bldg. 300, Ste. 318, Bluffton 29909. (843) 815-8561.

James T.H. Buxton announces the opening of Buxton Legal Group, LLC located at 1470 Ben Sawyer Blvd., Ste. B-8, Mt. Pleasant 29464, (843) 606-2397, and that Brian M. Collie has joined the firm as an associate.

Clawson and Staubes, LLC announces that M. Kyle Thompson has joined the Greenville office located at 223 W. Stone Ave., 29609. (864) 331-8940.

Farnsworth Law Offices, LLC announces that Perry B. "Buck" DeLoach Jr. has joined the firm as an associate located at 2 Williams St., Greenville 29601. (864) 250-9119.

Elizabeth A. Franklin-Best announces that she has joined Blume, Norris & Franklin-Best, LLC located at 900 Elmwood Ave., Ste. 101, Columbia 29201. (803) 765-1044.

Gallivan, White & Boyd, PA announces that Curtis L. Ott has joined the Columbia office as partner located at 1201 Main St., Ste. 1200, 29201. (803) 779-1833.

Karen R. Crane, LLC announces that it is now McManaway Law, LLC and remains located at 522 N. Church St., Greenville 29601. (864) 283-6040.

McNair Law Firm, PA announces the opening of its Kentucky office located at 1010 Monarch St., Ste. 380, Lexington, KY 40513. (859) 455-8080.

Rikard & Protopapas, LLC announces its relocation to 1329 Blanding St., Columbia 29201. (803) 978-6111.

Sweeny, Wingate & Barrow, PA announces that Richard McLawhorn has joined the Hartsville office located at 115 Cargill Way, Ste. B, 29551. (843) 878-0390.

July 13
ADR Commission Meeting, Conference Center

July 17
We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution Training, Bar Building

July 19
Family Law Section Council Meeting, Bar Building
Law Related Education Technology Training, Bar Building

July 20
Ethics Advisory Committee Meeting, Bar Building

July 27
Dispute Resolution Section Council Meeting, Conference Call
Elder Law Committee Meeting, Bar Building
Law Related Education Committee Retreat, Nelson Mullins (Columbia)
Professional Responsibility Committee Meeting, Bar Building

July 31 
Foundations of Democracy Training, Bar Building

August 2
Community Association Law Committee Meeting, Bar Building

August 7
Environment and Natural Resources Section Council Meeting, Conference Call

August 14
Construction Law Section Council Meeting, Conference Call

August 15
Memory Hold the Door Committee Meeting, Bar Building
Real Estate Practices Section Council Meeting, Conference Call

August 16
Family Law Section Council Meeting, TBA

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