Archive for January, 2010

Less adultery = more divorce?

While many in our culture believe contemporary folks wallow in sin, merely from the fact that women in our culture expect greater respect than they might have expected fifty or one hundred years ago makes me believe that the amount of male infidelity is actually declining over time.  The multiple and long-term affairs of Franklin […]

South Carolina’s new Responsible Father Registry

Beginning January 1, 2010, South Carolina implemented a Responsible Father Registry.  S.C. Code Ann. § 63-9-820.  This registry is designed to allow men who have potentially fathered a child to register as the child’s possible father.  The purpose of the registry is to simplify notice requirements for termination of parental rights and adoptions proceedings. With […]

Rules of engagement

Sometimes I think I have potential as a marriage counselor if and when I hang up my law license.  Sixteen years of practicing family law and, if you’re paying attention, you begin to learn why marriages work and why they go bad.  Typically they go bad not because one spouse or the other changed for […]

Calvin Morris: An Appreciation

Today [January 22, 2010] I attended the funeral of Calvin Morris.  Calvin would be on the short list of favorite clients. I first met Calvin when his disability attorney asked me to assist him.  A family court judge had sentenced Calvin to jail for failing to pay his child support, which Calvin had fallen behind […]

Supreme Court reaffirms that professional goodwill is not marital asset; finds abuse of discretion in family court’s alimony award but provides no explanation to justify its modified award

Today’s Supreme Court opinion in Dickert v. Dickert, 387 S.C. 1, 691 S.E.2d 448 (2010), resolved interesting issues of equitable distribution and alimony.  However on the alimony issue greater explanation of its rationale would have been useful.  Further the court failed to explain the factors approving the attorney fee award. Dickert involved the dissolution of a […]

Supreme Court clarifies equitable distribution in a long-term marriage and slowly moves South Carolina to a community property state status

The January 4, 2010 Supreme Court opinion in Dawkins v. Dawkins, 386 S.C. 169, 687 S.E.2d 52 (2010) was explicitly intended to clarify for the bench and bar “the apparent trend at the appellate level to find an abuse of discretion when an equitable division award in a long-term marriage deviates from an equal division, and […]

Court of Appeals clarifies standards for service of notice of UIFSA action and issuance of child support bench warrant

The December 30, 2009 Court of Appeals opinion in SCDSS v. Johnson, 386 S.C. 426, 688 S.E.2d 588 (2009), clarifies the service requirements for notification of attempted registration of a foreign order under the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA) and clarifies when the court can issue a bench warrant for an alleged failure to pay support. […]