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Judicial Reform States South Carolina

South Carolina Supreme Court

Pro Freedom
Total Judgeships: 

5 (0 vacancies)

Political Makeup: 

Non-Partisan

Location(s): 
Columbia
Caseload: 

350

Recent Cases

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LISTEN NOWThe Freedom Files Podcast Episode 45: Project Arizona Part 1Listen Here
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Autopsy Reports Are Not Medical Records Under FOIA

Wed, 07/16/2014

Perry v. Bullock: Under the South Carolina Freedom of Information Act, medical records are exempt from disclosure in court. This case brought to light the issue of whether or not autopsy reports are considered medical records and are thus exemptible in court. The District Court ruled in favor of the coroner, ruling that the autopsy reports are not medical records.

Decision

The Supreme Court of South Carolina affirmed the decision of the lower court by ruling that autopsy reports are not excusable under the FOIA. As a result, the reports are allowed to be accessed and introduced in court as evidence during a trial.

Read the full decision here
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FOIA Applicable to County Councils?

Wed, 06/18/2014

Lambries v. Saluda County Council: The Saluda County Council amended the agenda for their regularly held county meeting, leading them to make decisions on topics that the plaintiff argues were brought up and decided upon without notice to the public. Lambries argued that under the Freedom of Information Act, that County Councils are required to post all changes of agendas and, since they did not, the decisions made during that meeting are void.

Decision

The Supreme Court of South Carolina ruled that the FOIA does not apply to County Council’s agenda meetings that are regularly scheduled. The Court gave reason that FOIA’s notice statute doesn’t require an agenda to be posted and therefore the decisions made during the meeting that Lambries missed are still valid. If it did apply, the resulting work required by Councils would be substantial.

Read the full decision here
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Having a Right but Not Being Allowed to Exercise It

Thu, 04/24/2014

SC Libertarian Party v. SC Election Commission: The SC Libertarian Party requested acknowledgement that it had rights under the Equal Access to the Ballot Act and wanted approval from the Commission to hold a primary and have a referendum placed on the primary ballot.

Decision

The Supreme Court of South Carolina ruled in favor of the SC Libertarian Party, affirming that the Equal Access to the Ballot Act was in affect and that the Party had the right to hold a primary and introduce referendum questions. However, the Court approved the Commission’s action of denying the request of the Libertarian Party to actually hold a primary or place the question on the ballot.

Read the full decision here