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South Carolina
JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT
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South Carolina Court Administration
South Carolina Supreme Court
Columbia, South Carolina

ROSALYN W. FRIERSON
DIRECTOR

1015 SUMTER STREET, SUITE 200
COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA  29201
TELEPHONE:  (803) 734-1800
FAX:  (803) 734-1355

MEMORANDUM

TO: 

Magistrates and Municipal Judges

FROM: 

Robert L. McCurdy, Assistant Director

RE:  

Time Disposition Orders for Summary Courts

DATE:   

February 15, 2011

I have attached two Orders of the Chief Justice dated February 14, 2011, revoking and replacing two previous Orders of the Chief Justice dated June 26, 1980.  The Orders provide administrative time lines for disposal of civil and criminal cases, to include traffic, in magistrates and municipal courts.  The previous Orders required that civil cases be disposed within ninety (90) days of filing, and criminal cases, to include traffic, be disposed within sixty (60) days of filing.  The new Orders provide the following guidelines:

Should you have questions concerning these Orders, please do not hesitate to contact this Office.

RLM/mhb
Attachments


2011-02-14-01

The Supreme Court of South Carolina

RE:  Disposition of Criminal Summary Court Cases


ORDER


The judges of the magistrate and municipal courts of South Carolina being a part of the statewide unified judicial system, and pursuant to the provisions of Article V, Section 4, South Carolina Constitution,

IT IS ORDERED that each magistrate and municipal judge of this State shall try or otherwise dispose of all non-jury criminal cases, including non-jury traffic cases, within sixty (60) days of the return of the charging paper to the court, in the absence of good cause shown to the court.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that each magistrate and municipal judge of this State shall try or otherwise dispose of all criminal cases, including traffic cases, in which a  jury trial has been requested within one-hundred twenty (120) days of the return of the charging paper to the court, in the absence of good cause shown to the court.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that magistrates and municipal judges shall report, upon request, to the Office of South Carolina Court Administration the reason that any criminal cases, including traffic cases, have not been tried or otherwise disposed within the time limits prescribed in this Order.  The provisions of this Order in and of itself raise no substantive rights or defenses to parties involved in magistrate or municipal court criminal cases, including traffic cases.

This Order revokes and replaces the previous Order of the Chief Justice dated June 26, 1980, addressing the timely disposition of criminal summary court cases, including traffic cases.  The provisions of this Order are effective immediately and remain in effect unless amended or revoked by subsequent Order of the Chief Justice. 


  s/Jean Hoefer Toal
Jean Hoefer Toal
Chief Justice

February 14, 2011
Columbia, SC

2011-02-14-02

The Supreme Court of South Carolina

RE:  Disposition of Civil Magistrate Court Cases


ORDER


The judges of the magistrate courts of South Carolina being a part of the statewide unified judicial system, and pursuant to the provisions of Article V, Section 4, South Carolina Constitution,

IT IS ORDERED that each magistrate of this State shall try or otherwise dispose of all non-jury civil cases within ninety (90) days of the date on which the complaint or other pleading initiating the action was filed, in the absence of good cause shown to the court.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that each magistrate of this State shall try or otherwise dispose of all civil cases in which a  jury trial has been requested within one-hundred twenty (120) days of the date on which the complaint or other pleading initiating the action was filed, in the absence of good cause shown to the court.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that magistrates shall report, upon request, to the Office of South Carolina Court Administration the reason that any civil cases have not been tried or otherwise disposed within the time limits prescribed in this Order.  The provisions of this Order in and of itself raise no substantive rights or defenses to parties involved in magistrate court civil cases.

This Order revokes and replaces the previous Order of the Chief Justice dated June 26, 1980, addressing the timely disposition of civil magistrate court cases.  The provisions of this Order are effective immediately and remain in effect unless amended or revoked by subsequent Order of the Chief Justice. 

  s/Jean Hoefer Toal
Jean Hoefer Toal
Chief Justice

February 14, 2011
Columbia, SC