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South Carolina
Judicial Department
Supreme Court Published Opinions - May 2005

Note: Beginning in June 2012, opinions will be posted as Adobe PDFs. You can download a free copy of Adobe Reader here.

The summary following each opinion is prepared to offer lawyers and the public a general overview of what a particular opinion decides. The summary is not necessarily a full description of the issues discussed in an opinion.

5-2-2005 - Opinions

25976 - Miller v. Aiken

The Court accepted a certified question from the United States District Court and concluded an automobile insurer which provides only non-liability “collision and other named perils” coverage is not an “automobile insurance carrier” under S.C. Code Ann. § 38-77-160 (2002), and is thus not required to offer underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage.

5-2-2005 - Orders

ORDER - In the Matter of Miles L. Green
This is an order placing an attorney on interim suspension.
ORDER - Amendments to the South Carolina Rules of Civil Procedure
Order amends Rules 5(a) and 30(a) of the South Carolina Rules of Civil Procedure
ORDER - Amendments to Rule 227, SCACR
5-9-2005 - Opinions

25978 - In the Matter of John B. Bowden

This is a disciplinary opinion in which the Court publicly reprimanded an attorney.

25979 - In the Matter of Barry W . Bellino

This is a disciplinary opinion indefinitely suspending an attorney.

25980 - Gadson v. Hembree

In this case, the Court concluded under S.C. Code Ann. § 44-53-520(i) (2002) a seizing agency has a duty to take reasonable steps to maintain property upon issuance of a seizure warrant. However, this duty does not require a seizing agency to commence legal action to protect property subject to a seizure warrant against a condemnation action initiated by the city.

25981 - In the Matter of Former Dillion Cty. Magistrate Frank D Lee

This is a judicial disciplinary opinion in which the Court publicly reprimands a magistrate.

25982 - In the Matter of Former Chesterfield Cty. Magistrate Harold T. Conway

This is a judicial disciplinary opinion in which the Court publicly reprimands a magistrate.

25983 - State v. Jackson

Appellant was convicted of grand larceny greater than $5000 and sentenced to ten years. The Court affirmed and held the trial court did not err in admitting a photograph of the appellant at a Halloween party where he was dressed as a prisoner and in refusing to allow the appellant to introduce polygraph results in rebuttal.

25984 - Pittman v. Stevens

This is a medical malpractice case. The jury returned a verdict for the doctor. The Court held the trial court did not err in failing to charge the jury two requested instructions: 1) that conformity to custom is not in and of itself the exercise of due care as a matter of law and 2) when a great degree of danger is present, the doctor has a duty to respond in proportion to the risk. `

5-23-2005 - Opinions

25985 - In the Matter fo Hattie E. Boyce

This a disciplinary opinion in which the Court publicly reprimands an attorney.

25986 - Owners Insurance Co v. Clayton

The Court affirmed a circuit court order holding that an insurance policy exclusion did not apply.

25987 - Doe v. Crooks

This is a sexual-abuse action. The Court affirmed the circuit court's grant of summary judgment to the respondent. The appellant's action is barred under the statute of limitations.

25988 - State v. Smalls

This Court granted certiorari to determine whether the trial court had subject matter jurisdiction to enter a guilty plea

5-31-2005 - Opinions

25989 - State v. Dudley

While extraterritorial jurisdiction is not a component of subject matter jurisdiction, it involves such a fundamental question that it can be raised at any juncture.

25990 - Overcash v. South Carolina Electric and Gas Co.

In this case, the majority opinion declined to recognize a common law cause of action under the doctrine of public nuisance for purely personal injuries. The majority also concluded there is no private, statutory cause of action for public nuisance under S. C. Code Ann. Section 49-1-10.

25991 - Coon v. Coon

This is a divorce case. The Court granted a writ of certiorari to review the Court of Appeals' opinion reversing the family court's decision to vacate an order dividing Mr. Coon's disposable retired pay. The Uniformed Services Former Spouses' Protection Act (USFSPA) does not limit the family court's subject-matter jurisdiction to distribute more than half of disposable retired pay to the non-service-member spouse. The USFSPA pre-empts state law, but not state-court subject-matter jurisdiction. The family court therefore erred in vacating the order for want of subject-matter jurisdiction. Thus, the Court affirmed the Court of Appeals' decision to reverse and remand.