The Supreme Court of South Carolina




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


TO: Chief Judges for Administrative Purposes; Circuit Solicitors; Public Defenders; Attorneys Certified as Lead Counsel in Capital Cases; Clerks of Court.
FROM: Jean H. Toal
RE: Report on Expenses for Capital Indigent Defense
DATE: July 22, 2002

As you may be aware, S.C. Code Ann. 16-3-26(J) requires the Judicial Department to prepare a biennial report regarding fees and expenses in capital cases.  In order to issue a comprehensive report, I feel it is necessary to examine the entire issue of expenses involved in capital litigation.  To that end, I have issued the enclosed order.

I believe that the issue of funding for capital litigation is extremely important and that a review of expenses in previous cases is critically needed.   An extensive review will allow the promulgation of fair and reasonable standards to be used in assessing the propriety of fees and costs in future cases.  Further, the issuance of standards will allow more meaningful participation by circuit judges who are asked to approve fees and costs in ex parte proceedings.

With the full cooperation of all those involved with capital cases I am confident the report will be able to fulfill the above goals.  The order asks that all information regarding expenses and fees be submitted to me within thirty days.  Please send the information to:

Rachel Beckford
Chief Staff Attorney
South Carolina Supreme Court
PO Box 11330
Columbia, SC  29211

I fully understand that some information may be difficult to locate and do not hesitate to contact Rachel should you experience problems in meeting that deadline.  She can be reached by telephone at 803-734-1160.

I thank you in advance for your participation in this important project.