SCBar // Memorandum for Authors
Memorandum for Authors

The following is a guide for authors submitting articles for publication in South Carolina Lawyer.

1. Editorial Purpose: The South Carolina Lawyer strives to present practical and informative material that is of interest to a broad range of South Carolina Bar members. Articles may focus on recent changes in the law, the effects of cases and rulings about which members of the Bar need to be informed, ethical considerations, quality of life issues and law practice management. Practical "how to" articles are also encouraged. The South Carolina Lawyer may publish brief opinion pieces submitted as letters to the editor or as "Viewpoints" with appropriate disclaimers. Additionally, the magazine encourages pro/con articles by two or more authors who take opposing views on important law-related issues. The magazine may also publish on occasion reprints from other periodicals at the discretion of the editorial board. As a rule, the South Carolina Lawyer does not publish:

  • profiles of individual lawyers or members of the judiciary, whether contemporary or historical figures;
  • reviews of books, software or products of any kind;
  • poetry or fiction;
  • cartoons;
  • humorous pieces without a substantive focus;
  • speeches, reminiscences or memoirs;
  • articles that reference pending legislation until the legislation has passed; or
  • columns on any particular area of the law or ex officio columns. The only exceptions are columns on legal writing (The Scrivener), legal ethics (Ethics Watch) and evidence and trial procedure (Beyond the Bar), which the editors believe are relevant to all lawyers.
Any changes in editorial policy will be made at the discretion of the editorial board of South Carolina Lawyer.

2. Article Preparation: Articles should be submitted on disk copy or via e-mail in WordPerfect or Word format. Word count should be between 2,000 and 3,000 words. Viewpoints should be 500 words or less.

Articles may be submitted to Rachel Kerley, South Carolina Bar, P.O. Box 608, Columbia, SC 29202-0608 or or to any of the editors listed in the magazine.

3. Style: Articles should be written in a straightforward manner and should aim to present practical information in a clear and readable manner. The style should be as non-technical as possible and "legalese" should be avoided. Humor is welcome where appropriate and examples that illustrate a point are usually helpful. Articles should be written for the average lawyer who is looking for usable information that is not difficult or time-consuming to read.

The scope of an article should be narrow for a clear focus. For example, an article on real estate practice management is too broad in scope, while an article on the use of computers in preparing residential sales contracts is well focused. Introductions that advise the reader of the importance and relevance of articles are encouraged. Short paragraphs and sentences are preferred. It is suggested that short subheads be used to break the copy in longer articles. Articles should not be written in outline form, however. Examples and lists can be useful. When an article includes tables, charts or forms, these should not be included within the body of the article but should be submitted on separate sheets.

Except when referring to a specific individual, articles should be gender neutral whenever possible. Articles should also be written in the third person, except when the author is relating a personal experience relevant to the subject of an article. Effective January 2013, South Carolina Lawyer will use endnotes with articles. Only citations should be included in the endnotes, which must fit into the 3,000 maximum word count for articles.

All articles are edited by the South Carolina Bar's Communications Division according to the AP Stylebook.

4. Author Credits: South Carolina Lawyer authors will receive bylines at the beginning of articles and credit lines at the end. The credit line will include the author's name; title; firm, company or school; city; and state if outside South Carolina. No biographical sketches will be included.

5. Author Prerequisites: South Carolina Lawyer articles must be written by a South Carolina Bar member, a current law professor or be co-authored by a South Carolina Bar member. Only one submission from an individual author will be published per year.

6. Multiple Authors: When more than one person has written an article, please designate one person who should be contacted about editorial changes.

7. Disclosure: It is important that each author disclose any relationship he or she may have with the firm, company or person producing any product or providing any service referred to in the article. The author should make full disclosure even when the relevance seems remote. Full disclosure will allow the editors to judge the objectivity of the author, to determine whether a real or apparent conflict of interest exists, and to determine whether disclosure should be made in publishing an article.

8. Copyright: It is the policy of South Carolina Lawyer that on all submissions of original articles the author assign their copyright in the work to the South Carolina Bar. Publisher may reprint, or authorize other entities to reprint, the material as deemed appropriate. The publisher has the right to authorize the reproduction, adaptation, public distribution and public display of the article as a contribution to South Carolina Lawyer in electronic media, computerized retrieval systems and similar forms; such authorization includes use of the article anywhere in the world by means of public display, conversion to machine readable form and reproduction and distribution of copies.

The South Carolina Bar is not required to secure the consent of the author before exercising the above named rights. In addition, the Bar has no duty or responsibility to negotiate, collect or distribute any royalties in connection therewith.

9. Warranty and Representation: Any article published in South Carolina Lawyer must be an original work of the author. By submission of an article to South Carolina Lawyer, the author warrants and represents that he or she has included no material in the article in violation of any rights of any other person or entity and that he or she has disclosed to South Carolina Lawyer all relationships with any person or entity producing any product or providing any service referred to in the article.

10. Multiple Submissions: If an article is submitted or accepted for publication elsewhere before acceptance by South Carolina Lawyer, the author agrees to notify the appropriate articles editor immediately.

11. Editing of Title and Text: South Carolina Lawyer reserves the right to change the title of any article accepted for publication and to edit the text of the article. Whenever possible, copies of edited articles will be sent to authors for comment. Articles may be sent for review to persons who are not members of the Editorial Board but who are considered experts on the subject matter of the article.

12. Return of Articles: South Carolina Lawyer does not return manuscripts. The author should keep the original or a disk copy and send a clean, clear photocopy or printout.

13. Payment for Articles/Complimentary Copies: South Carolina Lawyer does not usually pay for articles. Each author will be sent five complimentary copies of the issue in which the author's article appears.

14. Reprints: Reprint requests, including exact material to be reproduced as well as purpose of reprint, must be received in writing. Send to Andrew Clemons, Managing Editor, South Carolina Lawyer, PO Box 608, Columbia, SC 29202. Attribution must be made to South Carolina Lawyer.

15. Acceptance Policy: No single member of the Editorial Board or the Bar staff has the authority to commit to the publication of any article, even when the article has been specifically solicited by a member of the Board. All publication decisions will be made by the Editorial Board acting as a group. Articles will be scheduled for publication at the discretion of the Managing Editor in consultation with the Editor and the Board. If publication is particularly relevant to a certain date or time frame, the author should inform the editors of this relevance.

16. Author's Agreement: By permitting the publication of an article in South Carolina Lawyer, the author agrees to all the terms, provisions and policies stated in this Memorandum for Authors.

17. MCLE Credit: Authors may receive 2 hours MCLE credit for writing a magazine article that is at least 2000 words. To apply for credit, send a copy of the article with a cover letter stating the word count and whether or not there was a co-author to the Commission on CLE at P.O. Box 2138, Columbia, SC 29201.