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The Supreme Court of South Carolina


TELEPHONE: (803) 734-1584
FAX: (803) 734-1167


TO: Circuit Court Judges
Family Court Judges
Clerks of Court
Members of the Bar
FROM: The Honorable Jean H. Toal
RE: Motion Fee
DATE: August 16, 2002

Effective July 1, 2002, Act No. 329 of 2002 amended the Code of Laws by adding § 8-21-320, which requires a fee of $25.00 to be collected for every motion made in the Court of Common Pleas and Family Court. The fee does not apply to family court juvenile delinquency proceedings, nor to family court matters involving rules to show cause in child and spousal support matters. The legislation also exempts matters involving indigents. The revenues from the motion fee must be separately transmitted to the state treasurer to be used exclusively by the Judicial Department.

Rule 7(b)(1), SCRCP provides that "[a]n application to the Court for an Order shall be by motion which, unless made during a hearing or trial in open court with a court reporter present, shall be made in writing, shall state with particularity the grounds therefore, and shall set forth the relief or Order sought. The requirement of writing is fulfilled if the motion is stated in a written notice of the hearing of the motion." Generally, all written, filed motions that fall into this definition and do not fall under the exceptions stated in the paragraph above require the $25.00 fee. All matters traditionally exempt from a filing fee do not carry the $25.00 fee on motions subsequently made in those cases. In those instances where it is not clear whether the motion fee applies, the applicable statute or rule should serve as a guide. If the word application, petition, motion, or affidavit appears in the statute or rule and no exemption applies, the motion fee should be assessed.

To promote uniformity in the application of the $25.00 motion fee, the following listing is provided as a guide. We will continue to monitor the situation, and inform you of any additions or changes to this list. If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact Court Administration at (803) 734-1800.

A. Motions Requiring the $25.00 Fee

1.  Motion for Order of Publication: § 15-9-710: $25.00.
2.  Rule 12, SCRCP Motions: $25.00.
3. Motion for Court Approved Settlement: $25.00.
4.  Motion for Release of Counsel: $25.00.
5. Motion for Substitution of Counsel: $25.00.
6. Consent Orders: $25.00. (See Rule 43(k), SCRCP).
7.  Supplemental Pleadings: Rule 15(d), SCRCP: $25.00.
8. Motion for Default Judgment: Rule 55, SCRCP: $25.00, regardless of whether damages are liquidated or unliquidated.
a.  Motion to Set Aside Default: Rule 55(c), SCRCP: $25.00.
9. Motion for New Trial: Rule 59, SCRCP: $25.00.
10. Motion to Alter or Amend Judgment: Rule 59(e): $25.00.
11. Motions Made in Court, Reduced to Writing: $25.00.
12. Motion to Amend a Motion: $25.00.
13. Motion for Order of Continuance: $25.00.
14. Motion for Substitution of Parties: Rule 25, SCRCP: $25.00.
15. Motion of Intervention: Rule 24, SCRCP: $25.00.
16.  Motion Requesting Physical and/or Mental Examination: Rule
35, SCRCP: $25.00.
17.  Rule 50, SCRCP.
a. Motion for Directed Verdict: $25.00.
b. Motion for Judgment Notwithstanding the Verdict: $25.00.
c. Motion for New Trial: $25.00.
18.  Motion for Request for Jury Instruction: Rule 51, SCRCP:
19.  Motion for Amendment of Judgment: Rule 52(b), SCRCP:
20. Motion for Summary Judgment: Rule 56, SCRCP: $25.00.
21.  Motion for Relief from Judgment or Order: Rule 60, SCRCP: $25.00.
22.  Motion for Seizure of Person or Property: Rule 64, SCRCP: $25.00
23. Motion for Execution or Assistance: Rule 70, SCRCP: $25.00.
24.  Motion for Appointment of Receiver: Rule 66, SCRCP: $25.00.
25.  Single Motion Applied to Multiple Cases: $25.00 Per Case.
26.  Subsequent Motions to Master: $25.00.

B. Motions Requiring Fee With Special Conditions

1.  Motion for Referral to Master: Rule 53, SCRCP: If referred to Master by Motion or Consent of Parties: $25.00. If referred to Master by Motion of Court: No Fee.
a. § 14-11-310 requires various fees to be collected in Master's Court and retained by County. These fees will be collected in addition to the motion fee.
2.  Supplemental Proceedings: If conducted in the Court of Common Pleas: $25.00. If conducted by Master, refer to #1 above.
3.  Orders Mailed Directly to Court: No charge if proposed order is submitted pursuant to judge's instruction. Otherwise: $25.00.
4.  Amendment of Pleadings: Rule 15(a), SCRCP: Matter of Right within thirty days of Filing: No Fee. After thirty days: $25.00.
5.  Third Party Practice: Rule 14, SCRCP: Defendant as Third Party Plaintiff bringing in Non-Party, if done within ten days after service of original answer: No Charge. After ten days with leave of Court: $25.00.
6.  Joinder, Permissive Joinder, Misjoinder, and Non-Joinder of Parties: Rules 19, 20, and 21, SCRCP: If by Motion of Party: $25.00. If by Motion of the Court: No Fee.
7.  Depositions before Action or Pending Appeal: Rule 27, SCRCP: If by Petition of Party: $25.00.
8.  Depositions Upon Oral Examination: Rule 30, SCRCP: If leave of Court required: $25.00.
9. Motion for Dismissal: Rule 41, SCRCP.
a. (a)(1): By Plaintiff by Stipulation, without leave of Court: No Fee.
b. (a)(2): By Order of Court: $25.00.
c.  (b): Involuntary Dismissal, Non-Suit: $25.00.
10. Motion to Consolidate or Sever: Rule 42, SCRCP: If requested by Party: $25.00. Upon Court's own Motion: No Fee.
11.  Rule 43, SCRCP
a. Rule 43(j): Motion for Right to Open and Close: $25.00.
b.  Rule 43(k): Agreement of Counsel
1.  If reduced to the form of a Consent Order or Written Stipulation signed by Counsel and entered in the record: $25.00.
2.  If made in open Court and entered in the record: No Fee.
12.  Rule 65, SCRCP: All actions contained in the Rule require separate filing fees; subsequent Motions in same action: $25.00.
13. Post-Conviction Relief: If exempt from filing fee due to Indigency, No Further Fee for Subsequent Motions by Defendant Required. Attorney General's Motion to Dismiss: $25.00.
14.  Motion to Enforce Settlement: $25.00, but may be shifted to other Party by judge.
15.  Motion to Compel: Rule 26, SCRCP: $25.00, but may be shifted to other Party by judge.
16. Rule 40, SCRCP
a. (a): Request for Jury or Non-Jury in Pleadings: No Charge.
b. (c): Transfer to Jury Trial Roster by Agreement: $25.00.
c.  (d): Objection to Transfer: $25.00.
d.  (e): Request Transfer to Jury Roster Nine Months to Twelve Months after Filing: $25.00.
e. (g): Motion to Strike from Jury Trial Roster: $25.00.
f. (i): Continuance: $25.00.
g. (j): Requires New Filing Fee and New Case Number: No Motion Fee.
h. (k): Alternate Method of Transfer to Jury Roster: $25.00.
17. Motion for Order of Protection from Discovery; Motion to Quash: Rules 24, 37, and 45, SCRCP: $25.00, but may be shifted to other Party by judge.
18.  Motion for Temporary Relief in Family Court: Rule 21, SCRFC: $25.00. This Motion may include numerous standard forms of relief, such as temporary custody, visitation, support, etc. However, only one fee charged.
19. Matters Involving Rule to Show Cause in Court Ordered Custody and Visitation Cases: $25.00.
20.  Subpoena Duces Tecum for DSS Child Support Cases: $25.00, but may be shifted to other party by judge.

C. Motions With No Fee

1. Sexually Violent Predator Cases: Regulation exempts filing fee. No subsequent Motion Fees.
2. General request for Subpoena: No Fee.
3.  Matters Involving Rules to Show Cause for Spousal Support: No Fee. No Subsequent Motion Fees.
4. Matters Involving Rules to Show Cause for Child Support: No Fee. No Subsequent Motion Fees.
5. Juvenile Delinquency Matters in Family Court: No Fee. No Subsequent Motion Fees.
6. Matters Involving Indigency in Common Pleas or Family Court: No Fee. No Subsequent Motion Fees.
7. Matters Involving Orders of Protection from Domestic Abuse: No Fee. No Subsequent Motion Fees.
8. Matters Involving Abuse and Neglect: No Fee. No Subsequent Motion Fees.