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2009-UP-229 - Paul v. Ormond

THIS OPINION HAS NO PRECEDENTIAL VALUE.  IT SHOULD NOT BE CITED OR RELIED ON AS PRECEDENT IN ANY PROCEEDING EXCEPT AS PROVIDED BY RULE 239(d)(2), SCACR.

THE STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA
In The Court of Appeals

Ronald I. Paul, Appellant,

v.

J. Charles Ormond, Jr., Individually, and as a partner of the Law Firm of Holler, Dennis, Corbett, Ormond, Plante & Garner, Respondents.


Appeal From Richland County
L. Casey Manning, Circuit Court Judge


Unpublished Opinion No. 2009-UP-229
Submitted May 1, 2009 – Filed May 27, 2009  


AFFIRMED


Ronald I. Paul, pro se Appellant.

J. Charles Ormond, Jr., of Columbia, for Respondent.

PER CURIAM: Ronald Paul alleges the circuit court erred in granting summary judgment in favor of Charles Ormond, Jr. in actions for legal malpractice, breach of contract, misrepresentation, breach of fiduciary duty, and negligence, all of which relate to Ormond’s representation of Paul in an underlying condemnation action.  We affirm pursuant to Rule 220(b), SCACR, and the following authorities: 

1.  As to whether summary judgment was proper: Rule 56(c), SCRCP (stating summary judgment is proper when there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law); George v. Fabri, 345 S.C. 440, 452, 548 S.E.2d 868, 874 (2001) (explaining the purpose of summary judgment is to expedite the disposition of cases not requiring the services of a fact finder).  

2.  As to whether Paul was required to produce an expert witness to establish duty, breach of duty, and proximate cause in his legal malpractice action: Doe v. Howe, 367 S.C. 432, 446, 626 S.E.2d 25, 32 (Ct. App. 2005) (“The client’s burden of establishing proximate cause in a legal malpractice action requires that he prove that he would have obtained a better result in the underlying matter if the attorney had exercised reasonable care.”); McNair v. Rainsford, 330 S.C. 332, 342, 499 S.E.2d 488, 494 (Ct. App. 1998) (stating in a legal malpractice action, the plaintiff must generally establish the standard of care by expert testimony); Jernigan v. King, 312 S.C. 331, 334, 440 S.E.2d 379, 381 (Ct. App.1993) (“On a defendant’s motion for summary judgment, there will usually be no genuine issue of material fact unless the plaintiff presents expert testimony on the standard of care and its breach by the defendant.”).

AFFIRMED.[1]

HEARN, C.J., THOMAS and KONDUROS, JJ., concur.


[1] We decide this case without oral argument pursuant to Rule 215, SCACR.