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In re Amendments to Lawyers' Fund for Client Protection of The South Carolina Bar Rules of Procedure

Supreme Court of South Carolina

March 20, 2009

In re: Amendments to the Lawyers' Fund for Client Protection of the South Carolina Bar Rules of Procedure

          ORDER

          JEAN H. TOAL C.J.

         In accordance with Rule 411(c)(2), South Carolina Appellate Court Rules, the South Carolina Bar has proposed a number of amendments to the Lawyers' Fund for Client Protection of the South Carolina Bar Rules of Procedure. The amendments seek to expedite claims by providing specific deadlines for processing claims. The amendments also include a new section governing confidentiality of applications, proceedings, and reports.

         We grant the Bar's petition to amend the Lawyers' Fund for Client Protection of the South Carolina Bar Rules of Procedure, as set forth in the attachment to this Order. These amendments shall be effective immediately.

         IT IS SO ORDERED.

          John H. Waller, Jr. J., Costa M. Pleicones J., Donald W. Beatty J., John W. Kittredge J.

         LAWYERS' FUND FOR CLIENT PROTECTION OF THE SOUTH CAROLINA BAR RULES OF PROCEDURE

         SECTION II. APPLICATION FOR REIMBURSEMENT

         6. If the lawyer is a member in good standing of the South Carolina Bar, the applicant's cooperation in grievance proceedings against such lawyer shall be a prerequisite to the granting of relief to such applicant from the Fund. The Committee may require that a claimant prosecute or cooperate in appropriate civil proceedings against the accused lawyer as a prerequisite to the granting of relief to such applicant from the Fund.

         SECTION III. PROCESSING APPLICATION

         1. The Committee shall cause reasonable investigation of any applications coming to its attention, either by applications for reimbursement or by certification from the Commission on Lawyer Conduct, its agents, or the Board of Governors of the South Carolina Bar.

         2. The Chair of the Committee shall cause each such application to be sent to a member of the Committee or other member of the South Carolina Bar for investigation and report. A copy of the application shall be served upon or sent by registered mail to the last known address of the lawyer who it is claimed committed the dishonest act. Whenever possible, the application will be referred to a member of the Committee or member of the South Carolina Bar who practices in the Judicial Circuit wherein the alleged defalcating lawyer practiced.

         3. When, in the opinion of the member to whom application has been referred, the application is clearly not for a reimbursable loss, no further investigation need be conducted. A report with respect to such application shall be made as hereinafter specified by the member to whom the application was referred.

         4. A member to whom a report is referred for investigation shall conduct such investigation in such manner as deemed necessary and desirable to determine whether the application is for a reimbursable loss and to guide the Committee in determining the extent, if any, to which the application shall be paid from the Fund.

         5. Any information obtained by the member from the files of the Commission on Lawyer Conduct shall be used solely by or for the Lawyers' Fund for Client Protection Committee; ...


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