Archive for January, 2014

Should there be automatic de novo review of temporary custody and support orders?

I’ve previously complained that South Carolina’s handling of family court temporary hearings violate due process.  This is because allowing such hearings to proceed on affidavits alone–and affidavits that do not have to be exchanged until the temporary hearing–do not allow parties to prepare to defend the allegations or confront the witnesses against them. The November […]

The Burgess opinion and “The End of Men”

Every published opinion tells a story and the January 15, 2014 Court of Appeals opinion in Burgess v. Burgess, 753 S.E.2d 566 (S.C. App. 2014), tells a particularly interesting one.  Like Hanna Rosin’s “The End of Men: And the Rise of Woman,” Burgess demonstrates a culture that defines men primarily as providers and shows little use […]

Court of Appeals finds family court improperly determined downsized husband’s earning capacity

In the January 15, 2014 opinion of Burgess v. Burgess, 407 S.C. 98, 753 S.E.2d 566 (Ct. App. 2014), the Court of Appeals reversed and remanded the family court’s alimony and attorney’s fees award, finding that the family court had improperly imputed too high an earning capacity to husband. Husband worked in commercial real estate. […]

Supreme Court affirms lower courts’ ruling on transmutation of husband’s business

The January 15, 2014 Supreme Court opinion in Pittman v. Pittman, 407 S.C. 141, 754 S.E.2d 501 (2014), affirmed the Court of Appeals and family court’s determination that husband’s premarital surveying business had been transmuted into marital property while modifying the reasoning justifying the decision.  At trial the family court found this business to be transmuted and awarded […]

2013 again provides a dearth of published family law opinions

There are literally hundreds of commonplace but unresolved family law issues in South Carolina.  Yet, at the rate our appellate courts issue published family law opinions, these unresolved issues pile-up faster than our appellate courts resolve them. In 2013, our appellate courts issued fourteen published family law opinions: six from the Supreme Court and eight […]