South Carolina Bar House of Delegates information

The next meeting of the SC Bar House of Delegates will begin at 11 am January 17, during the South Carolina Bar Convention at the Myrtle Beach Marriott Resort and Spa at Grande Dunes.

Please take a few minutes to review the summaries of key agenda items. Proposals include changes that would allow, but not require, e-mail delivery of court pleadings, discovery motions and responses, and other documents. This change would have an impact on many practice areas on virtually a daily basis.

If you would like more detail, you will also find the complete agenda packet at the link below.

If you have any questions or concerns about an agenda item, please call or email me by January 16. It is important to me to make sure your voices are heard during this decision-making process that affects all attorneys. In order to achieve that goal, I need your input.


m-smith1-web_mugMichael B. Smith
Morton & Gettys
Representing the attorneys of York and Union Counties in the SC Bar House of Delegates

Read a summary of key agenda items below.

You can download the full agenda here.

Consent Agenda:

Requests from Solo and Small Firm Section to amend bylaws Page 26 of agenda packet

Requests from Dispute Resolution Section to amend bylaws Page 33 of agenda packet

Report from the President

Report from South Carolina Bar Foundation, Inc. Page 45 of agenda packet

Request from Practice and Procedure Committee to Amend Rule 5(b)(1) and Rule 6(e), SCRCP: Changes would allow, but not require, court pleadings, discovery requests and responses, and other documents to be served via e-mail. It would require attorneys who want to use electronic delivery to provide e-mail addresses for delivery in a written consent to eliminate confusion about to where documents should be sent. Page 56 of agenda packet

Request from the Pro Bono Board to Amend Commentary to Canon 4B of the Code of Judicial Conduct, Rule 501, SCACR: Proposed amendment would update the South Carolina Code of Judicial Conduct to reflect comprehensive changes the American Bar Association made in 2007 to the Model Code of Judicial Conduct. These include a provision stating that judges are ethically permitted to encourage pro bono service. The changes also would clarify rules for judges’ participation in educational, religious, charitable, fraternal or civic organizations. Page 61 of agenda packet

Request from the Pro Bono Board to Amend Rule 426, SCACR: Proposed amendment would adopt the American Bar Association Model Rule on the Provision of Legal Services Following Determination of Legal Disaster. This would allow licensed out-of-state attorneys to provide pro bono legal services to qualified indigents in areas affected by major disasters such as hurricanes or floods. Page 77 of agenda packet

Request from the Professional Responsibility Committee to Amend Rule 3.8 of the Rules of Professional Conduct: Proposed changes outline steps prosecutors must take if they know of new, credible, and material evidence or information creating a reasonable likelihood a convicted defendant did not commit a crime of which the defendant had been convicted. Page 85 of agenda packet

Request from the Professional Responsibility Committee to Amend Rule 1.0, 1.1, 1.18, 4.4, 5.3, 5.5, and 8.5 of the Rules of Professional Conduct: The proposed changes govern when lawyers must obtain a client’s informed consent to work with lawyers outside the attorney’s firm; clarify when electronic communications establish an attorney-client relationship; clarify the definition of “inadvertently sent” electronic information and procedures for addressing such situations; clarify rules for using the services of non-lawyers within and outside the law firm; and clarify rules governing unauthorized practice of law and multi-jurisdictional practices. Page 92 of agenda packet

Request from the Dispute Resolution Section to Recommend that the Legislature repeal §38-77-710: The section of code provides for property damage arbitration paid for by counties. The statute, which dates to 1958, includes outdated filing fees and pay for arbitrators. Page 105 of agenda packet

Request from the Richland County Bar Association for Funding for the SC Supreme Court Security and Beautification Project: The proposed project includes parking-lot repairs and redesign, with landscaping and fencing. The Richland County Bar Association so far has raised $95,000 for the project and is asking the South Carolina Bar to contribute $10,000. Page 111 of agenda packet