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Court of Appeals Published Opinions - November 2006

Note: Beginning in June 2012, opinions will be posted as Adobe PDFs. You can download a free copy of Adobe Reader here.

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.

11-6-2006 - Opinions

4174 - Hackworth v. Greenville County

The Hackworths appeal the circuit court's grant of summary judgment on their action seeking recovery of $152,016 seized by the Greenville County Sheriff's Department. Mr. Hackworth signed a forfeiture agreement acknowledging the money was gambling proceeds and would be forfeited as part of a plea agreement. This Court affirmed the circuit court's holding that the Hackworths failed to assert their claims within the two-year statute of limitations.

4175 - Brannon v. Palmetto Bank

This Court reversed the circuit court finding Palmetto Bank was entitled to a directed verdict on the Brannons' causes of action for breach of contract and conversion. The mortgage contract between Palmetto Bank and the Brannons allowed Palmetto Bank to use insurance proceeds to pay off the mortgage debt. Since Palmetto Bank had a legal right use the insurance proceeds to set-off the Brannons' mortgage debt, Palmetto Bank cannont be held liable for conversion of those funds.

4176 - SC Farm Bureau v. Dawsey

The court affirms the denial of coverage, based on the specific wording of an insurance policy exclusion, for an unintentional injury resulting from an intentional act.

11-13-2006 - Opinions

4177 - State v. Sosbee

Sosbee was convicted of assault with intent to commit criminal sexual conduct with a minor in the first degree and committing a lewd act upon a child. He was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole and fifteen years, respectively. He appeals, arguing the trial court erred in: (1) sentencing him to life without the possibility of parole; and (2) allowing the State to amend an indictment where it changed the nature of the offense. We affirm.

4178 - Query v. Burgess

This is an action to determine title to real property. Appellant O. Grady Query brought a declaratory judgment action against respondents Carmen Burgess and the State of South Carolina seeking to establish ownership over certain marshlands abutting his Folly Beach property. The master found Query did not own the marshlands. The master concluded the State owned the marshlands based on the “public trust doctrine.” Query appeals, and we affirm.

11-20-2006 - Opinions

4179 - Wilkinson v. Palmetto State Transp. Co.

Appellants appeal a circuit court order affirming the Commission’s award of benefits to Respondent. Appellants’ argues the circuit court erred in affirming the Workers’ Compensation Commission’s: (1) finding an employer/employee relationship existed; (2) denial of a motion to include additional evidence; (3) finding that an occupational disability policy is a collateral source; (4) denial of a motion to join the provider of occupational disability policy, as a party defendant; and (5) denying the testimony of Appellants’ expert. We affirm.

11-27-2006 - Opinions

4180 - Holcombe-Burdette v. Bank of America

In this civil action, the Appellant avers that the Circuit Judge erred in ruling that Charles A. Burdette’s estate is not entitled to a share of the Trust referenced by Item VIII(2)(d) of the Last Will and Testament of Bennie W. Burdette on the ground that Charles A. Burdette failed to satisfy conditions precedent set forth in the express terms of Item VIII(2)(d), rendering him ineligible.

4181 - Wright v. Craft

In this civil action, the jury rendered the following verdicts: (1) Negligence-$25,578 actual damages and $12,789 punitive damages; (2) Unfair Trade Practices Act (UTPA)-$25,578 actual damages; (3) Motor Vehicle Dealer’s Act (MVDA)-$51,156 statutorily doubled actual damages. The Respondent elected to proceed on the jury verdict for UTPA of $25,578 actual damages. Pursuant to section 39-5-140 of the South Carolina Code, the Circuit Judge trebled the UTPA verdict, thereby rendering a verdict in totality against Appellant in the amount of $76,734. On appeal the parties posit multitudinous issues that run the spectrum and gamut involving failing to preserve issues, directed verdict, judgment non obstante veredicto, motion for new trial, an attack on the jury verdict in regard to an allegation of undue passion and prejudice, attorney's fees, and other legal matters.

4182 - James v. SC Employee Insurance Program

This appeal arises from a dispute about health insurance coverage under a group plan for state employees and their dependents. The State of South Carolina Employee Insurance Program appeals an order of the circuit court finding David and Linda James were entitled to coverage for a DOC Band for their infant daughter on the basis it was a medically necessary device to treat her conditions of plagiocephaly and torticollis.