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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.
3-1-2023 - Opinions
A jury found Respondent Randy Wright guilty of assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature. The court of appeals reversed Wright's conviction and remanded for a new trial, holding (1) the trial court erred in denying Wright's request that the jury be individually polled and (2) the trial court's denial of the request was reversible per se. State v. Wright, 432 S.C 365, 370, 373, 852 S.E.2d 468, 471-72 (Ct. App. 2020). We affirm the court of appeals' opinion.
We granted a writ of certiorari to review the court of appeals' decision in State v. Boston, 433 S.C. 177, 857 S.E.2d 27 (Ct. App. 2021). We now dismiss the writ as improvidently granted.3-8-2023 - Opinions
Busse appealed his conviction for second-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor, claiming a statement the deputy solicitor made during closing argument improperly vouched for the victim's credibility. The court of appeals affirmed. We find the deputy solicitor's statement did not amount to vouching. We affirm.3-15-2023 - Opinions
In this attorney disciplanary matter, the Court imposes a public reprimand.
In this attorney disciplinary matter, the Court imposes the sanction of disbarment.
In the attorney disciplinary matter, the Court imposes a definite suspension of ninety days.3-29-2023 - Opinions
Pursuant to Rule 244, SCACR, the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina certified the following question to this Court: Under South Carolina law, may an auto insurer validly limit underinsured motorist property damage coverage to property damage to vehicles defined in the policy as "covered autos"? We hold insurers are required to offer UIM property damage coverage and therefore answer the certified question "no."
In USAA Casualty Insurance Co. v. Rafferty, we held South Carolina Code section 38-77-160 (2015) requires automobile insurers to offer underinsured motorist (UIM) property damage coverage, and that coverage cannot be limited to an insured's "covered auto." Op. No. 28144 (S.C. Sup. Ct. filed Mar. 29, 2023) (Howard Adv. Sh. No. 12 at 18). We rely upon Rafferty and affirm the circuit court's order reforming Appellant's UIM endorsement to cover "damage to or loss of any tangible property."
The Court answers the certified question from the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina by holding that S.C. Code Ann. § 61-2-145(C) (2022) does not create a private right of action in favor of an injured party against the business's insurer.