News + Press

May 23, 2013

May 22, 2013

Welcome to the South Carolina Bar's E-Blast! 
May 23, 2013
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.

Deadline is June 1 to update contact information for the Lawyers Desk Book
Production of the 2013-14 Lawyers Desk Book is underway, and address changes must be made by June 1 to be reflected in the new edition. All changes in contact information are handled by the
S.C. Attorney Information System (AIS) exclusively, and you must log on to AIS to update your information. Complete contact information will be published for all Bar members, to include name, organization, mailing address, phone number and e-mail address.

If you have not entered your fax number in AIS, the Bar does not have it on file. While AIS does not require fax numbers, you must enter one if you would like it to appear in the Lawyers Desk Book. To ensure your zip code matches the address published, please do not enter two addresses (P.O. Box and Street) in a single address field. Please review your information carefully, as it will be published as entered in AIS.

Administrative suspensions for failure to comply with CLE requirements
The S.C. Commission on CLE and Specialization has furnished
this list of lawyers who have failed to file reports showing compliance with CLE requirements, or who have failed to pay the filing fee or any penalty required for the report of compliance, for the reporting year ending in February 2013. By order of May 22 they are suspended from the practice of law.

List of accounting professionals available
Looking for an accounting professional who has been educated on the intricacies of law office trust accounts?
View the list of CPAs who completed the “Trust Accounting for Law Firms” class, co-sponsored by the S.C. Association of Certified Public Accountants and the S.C. Bar.

Hearing scheduled
The Committee on Character and Fitness has scheduled a hearing on June 12 on the petition of David Arthur Braghirol for reinstatement.

Advance Sheet update
May 22, 2013
The S.C. Supreme Court found constitutional the requirement of S.C. Code Section 23-3-540(C) that individuals convicted of CSC-first or lewd act on a minor mandatorily submit to electronic monitoring upon their release from incarceration or violation of their probation or parole. However, the Court found the final sentence in S.C. Code Section 23-3-540(H) unconstitutional, since it permits lifetime satellite monitoring with no opportunity for judicial review for persons convicted of CSC-first or lewd act on a minor. The Court opined, “[t]he complete absence of any opportunity for judicial review to assess a risk of re-offending … is arbitrary and cannot be deemed rationally related to the legislature’s stated purpose of protecting the public from those with a high risk of re-offending.” As a result, the Court invalidated that provision of Section 23-3-540(H) and affirmed as modified the decision of the circuit court.
State v. Dykes, No. 27124, is available online.
Justice Pleicones concurred in result only. Justice Hearn dissented in a separate opinion in which Justice Beatty concurred.

This opinion, originally filed Mar. 6, 2013, was withdrawn, substituted and refiled May 22, 2013. The Court granted certiorari to review the Court of Appeals’ decision affirming the order of the S.C. Workers’ Compensation Commission (Commission). The Commission awarded Sparks 500 weeks of compensation for total and permanent disability, but denied him lifetime benefits because he did not suffer “physical brain damage” within the meaning of Section 42-9-10(C) of the S.C. Code. The Court opined that to qualify as “physical brain damage” under Section 42-9-10(C), there must be physical brain damage that is both permanent and severe as a result of a compensable injury. Because there is substantial evidence to support the Commission’s finding that Sparks did not suffer said type of damage, the Court affirmed the judgment of the Court of Appeals.
Sparks v. Palmetto Hardwood, No. 27229, is available

This opinion, originally filed Mar. 6, 2013, was withdrawn, substituted and refiled May 22, 2013. In this workers’ compensation case, the Court reversed the decision of the Court of Appeals, and remanded the case to the S.C. Workers’ Compensation Commission for a determination of MMI, permanency and whether Crisp’s injury constitutes “physical brain damage” under Section 42-9-10(C) of the S.C. Code. The Court reiterated its holding in Sparks v. Palmetto Hardwood, Op. No. 27229 (S.C. Sup. Ct. refiled May 22, 2013) (Shearouse Adv. Sh. No. 23 at 47), that to qualify as “physical brain damage” pursuant to Section 42-9-10(C) of the S.C. Code, the brain damage must be physical, permanent and severe.
Crisp v. SouthCo., No. 27230, is available online.
Justice Pleicones concurred in a separate opinion.

In this business dispute, affirmed in part, reversed in part and remanded, the Court determined that under Delaware law, a claim for breach of fiduciary duty accrues at the time of the breach. In a merger context, the breach takes place when the directors fix or adopt the terms of a merger contract. Thus, any alleged breach in the instant case occurred when the SCI board adopted and publicly announced the terms of the merger with FITG. Because the petitioner released all claims he held against SCI following the SCI board’s adoption and announcement of the merger terms, but prior to the merger’s completion, the Court determined the petitioner held a valid claim at the time he signed the release. As a result, the petitioner’s suit could not be sustained, and his case was dismissed with prejudice. Lastly, the Court held the Court of Appeals correctly found the trial court erred in dismissing the respondents’ defenses and counterclaim relating to the release.
Menezes v. W.L. Ross & Company, No. 27254, is available online.
Justice Pleicones concurred in result only.

In this criminal appeal, the Court adopted the federal standard regarding duplicitous indictments, holding that a defendant will prevail on appeal when he establishes both that an indictment was duplicitous and that he was prejudiced by the duplicity. Although in the instant case the Court found the indictment was duplicitous, the Court determined Samuels did not suffer any prejudice. The Court further determined the circuit court did not err in sentencing Samuels for assault of a high and aggravated nature since a jury found him guilty of that offense. Accordingly, the Court affirmed Samuels’ conviction and sentence.
State v. Samuels, No. 27255, is available online.

The Court granted a motion to stay this matter for a period of 60 days since the parties have reached and are preparing settlement documents for presentation to and approval by the trial court. The Court reminded the bench and bar that action on a settlement may not be taken by the lower court, except with regard to matters not affected by the appeal, while the matter is pending before the Court.
Lancaster v. Georgia-Pacific Corp., No. 2013-000175, is available online.

Firm announcements
Heather M. Cairns announces the opening of Cairns Law Firm, LLC located at 2537 Gervais St., Columbia 29201. (803) 771-6979.

Keable & Brown, PA
announces its relocation to 109 Laurens Rd., Bldg. 2, Ste. A, Greenville 29607, (864) 250-4000 and that Joel F. Geer has joined the firm as of counsel.

The Law Office of Burnett & Cairns, Inc.
 announces its name has changed to The Law Office of Shannon K. Burnett, Inc. and remains located at 109 N. Main St., Blythewood 29016. (803) 786-1758.

Smith Moore Leatherwood, LLP
announces that Hall Provence has joined the Greenville office located at 300 E. McBee Ave., Ste. 500, 29601. (864) 242-6440.

Willson Jones Carter & Baxley, PA announces that Tucker Cecil and Sarah G.J. Verstraten have joined the Charleston office located at 421 Wando Park Blvd., Ste. 100, 29464. (843) 284-1080.

May 29
Employment and Labor Law Section Immigration Law Committee Meeting, Conference Call

June 11
Health Care Law Section Council Meeting, Conference Call

June 14
Elder Law Committee Meeting, Conference Call

June 17-21
S.C. Supreme Court Institute, Columbia

June 21
Ethics Advisory Committee Meeting, Bar Building

June 28
Animal Law Committee Meeting, Conference Call

To be added or deleted from the E-Blast mailing list, please contact Donna Oelhafen in Membership Services at or (803) 799-6653, ext. 171. To change your e-mail address, you must log on to AIS at

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