Supreme Court Seal
South Carolina
JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT
Site Map | Feedback

RULE 11. INVESTIGATION BY ASSIGNED MEMBER

Upon receipt of the completed application, the circuit chair shall promptly appoint the assigned member. The assigned member shall conduct an investigation sufficient to enable the rendering of an informed recommendation. The assigned member's recommendation shall be written and contain the reasons for it. This report shall be submitted to the circuit chair, with a copy to the Bar office, as soon as possible and not later than ninety (90) days after appointment of the assigned member, unless the time is extended by the circuit chair pursuant to Rule 12. The circuit chair shall send a copy of the report to each of the parties and notification of the circuit chair's concurrence or nonconcurrence with the recommendations of the assigned member.

The attorney shall respond to the issues raised in the application within thirty (30) days of being contacted by the assigned member. The assigned member may extend the period for response once and by no more than 30 days.

The parties to the dispute and any witnesses on their behalves shall make themselves available for interview at a time and place designated by the assigned member within the time required for the assigned member to make a report. If a party or a witness cannot, for any reason, be present at the designated time and place, that witness or party shall submit a written response to the assigned member within fourteen (14) days of the date the assigned member designated as the interview date, unless the assigned member grants the party or witness an extension. The party or witness may also submit a statement in writing, provided such statement is delivered to the assigned member on or before the date designated for the interview of that party or witness. The response to questions along with the written statement, if any, together shall constitute the complete statement of the party or witness concerning the dispute. In the event a party fails to respond, then the assigned member must render a decision based upon the available materials.

The assigned member may encourage resolution of the dispute by compromise where the circumstances warrant such effort. Efforts at compromise may include mediation of the dispute by the assigned member. Compromise or consent agreements, whether written or oral, become the final decision of the Board fifteen (15) days after the date of a letter from the circuit chair to the parties confirming the agreement.

If the amount in dispute does not exceed $1,000, in lieu of appointment of an assigned member, the circuit chair may assign the dispute to the staff of the Bar for an expedited investigation and recommendation. The staff in its discretion may make findings based on written submissions by the parties or on such other information as may be necessary to render an informed recommendation. In the event of such assignment, the staff shall have the same powers and be governed by the same duties and procedures as would an assigned member.

Amended by Order dated December 6, 2011.