SC Appleseed to Host Series of Public Forums re: Foreclosure

Hot off the press!

SC Appleseed Legal Justice Center will host a series of three public forums around the state in response to the foreclosure crisis. Check the flyer below for more information.


ABA 2010 Commission on Homelessness and Poverty Coming to Charleston

ABA 2010 Commission on Homelessness & Poverty Lawyers Working to End Homelessness are meeting in Charleston at the end of this month.

And, from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. on Friday, October 29th, they’ll be presenting on emerging best practices for Veterans at the Charleston School of Law.

For more information, check out the flyer – Homeless Veterans Justice Initiative Program FALL BUSINESS MTG Charleston SC.

No RSVP is needed and there is no cut-off date.  If anyone has any questions they can contact Jeff Yungman at 843-723-9477 ext. 114 or by email.

For additional information about how Crisis Ministries is helping out our veterans, check this out – VA gives Crisis Ministries $1.2 M to help homeless veterans.


Bicycle Camp For Children with Special Needs

Volunteers Needed!

Lose the Training Wheels – Bicycle Camp For Children with Special Needs

When: July 26-July 30, 2010
Where: North Charleston Convention Center, 5001 Coliseum Drive Charleston


Session A 8:30-9:45
Session B 10:00-11:15
Session C 11:30-12:45
Session D 1:45—3:00
Session E 3:15-4:30

Registration Fee: $175

Majority of camp costs will be covered by grants and donations. Some scholarship money is available upon request.

Hosted by: Down Syndrome Association of the Lowcountry

Fundamental Requirements

  • Ages 8-21
  • Have the use of all limbs
  • Possess adequate vision to see and avoid obstacles
  • Ability to separate from caregiver and work within a group

For more information and an application go to or call (843) 553-3725 and leave message.
For immediate questions please contact Gene Carpenter, camp coordinator, at

For more, click Bike Camp4.

Guest Blogger: Cynthia Cothran, LRE Director at the SC Bar

Help make mock trial rock!


Volunteers Needed!

It is that time of year again!

The Law Related Education (LRE) Division is seeking volunteers for its growing mock trial programs, which teach middle and high school students about the legal system through trial role playing. Mock trial volunteers enjoy the thrill of competition while scoring and presiding over trials. LRE not only needs volunteers to score the competitions, but attorney coaches to help prepare the teams.


Competitions Dates and Locations are as follows:

October 31, 2009 Middle School Mock Trial Regional Competitions (Charleston (full), Columbia, Conway and Greenville)

November 21, 2009 Middle School Mock Trial State Competition (Lexington) (full)

February 27, 2010 High School Mock Trial Regional Competitions (Charleston, Columbia, Conway, and Greenville)

March 12-13, 2010 High School Mock Trial State Competition (Columbia)


If anyone is interested in serving as an attorney coach instead of a scoring judge, there are several high schools that need attorney coaches that are as follows:

Berkeley County: Cane Bay High School

Horry: Carolina Forest High School

Richland: Lower Richland High School, Ridgeview High School, Spring Valley High School

York: Nations Ford High School, Westminster Catawba Christian School

Pickens: D.W. Daniel High School

All mock trial volunteers earn pro bono credit for their hours dedicated to the mock trial program. To learn more or volunteer, contact Cynthia H. Cothran at or at (803) 252-5139.

Attorneys + Depression= Deadly Mix

October 4-10, 2009:  Mental Illness Awareness Week

Right now I’m wearing two hats – that of  Attorney and Mental Health America of South Carolina Board Member. And it’s for my love for both that I bring this topic to the forefront. As I received the e-newsletter from MHA SC announcing Mental Illness Awareness Week, I was reminded of information I’d heard a few years back when I attended a Lawyers Helping Lawyers annual conference in Charleston – Attorneys are diagnosed with clinical depression at 4 times the rate of the general population.



And, the Lawyers Helping Lawyers conference also quoted statistics about attorneys and addiction. Again, the profession tends toward higher rates of alcohol and substance abuse than most.

My goal today is to let attorneys who are feeling depressed know that You Are Not Alone. And there is hope.

You can get a free anonymous online screening from MHA SC. And if you want to talk with someone, contact Lawyers Helping Lawyers (LHL) at 1-(866) 545-9590 or contact an LHL committee member directly. This is a confidential program.

Don’t wait to get help. It may save your practice. It can save your life.


PS – A really great video on suicide and its impact is available online at

Upcoming SC Events

Here are some noteworthy events coming up in May 2009. Feel free to add them to your calendar.


Columbia, SC:

Friday, May 1 – P&A’s Annual Gala: Celebrating Abilities: An Evening of Jazz and Art

To benefit Protection and Advocacy for People with Disabilities, Inc. (P&A)

6:00 to 9:00 p.m. on the 17th floor of the Meridian Building.

Admission: $50 per person, sponsorships available


Friday, May 8 – University of South Carolina School of Law GRADUATION


Saturday, May 9 – South Carolina Bar Young Lawyer Division’s 3rd Annual Justice Jam

To benefit Sistercare

7:00 p.m. at Sudworks in Five Points

Admission: $5 per person


Tuesday, May 12 – Women After Five 16th Annual Reception and Silent Auction
To benefit Sistercare
5:30 to 8:00 p.m. at the Columbia Conference Center
Admission: $40 per person donation requested


Beaufort, SC:

Friday, May 22 – CODA 2009 Carolina Spring Fling

To benefit CODA and Lowcountry survivors of domestic violence

6:30 to 9:30 p.m. at the University of South Carolina Beaufort Hargray Building and Harvey Plaza

Admission: $50 per person or $40 per person for groups of 10 or more


Charleston, SC:

Saturday, May 16 – Charleston School of Law GRADUATION



Save the Dream Tour Brings Hope to Homeowners

When: MARCH 13th – 16th

Where: Columbia, SC

What: NACA Save the Dream Event allows some homeowners to restructure their mortgages the same day

Hosted by: Representative James Clyburn

Cost:  FREE

Thousands line up to meet with Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America (NACA) counselors to discuss their mortgages and keep their homes. According to an article in the Columbia Regional Business Report (CRBR), more than 10,000 people participated in the first three days of the Save the Dream event. NACA’s role is to work with homeowners and lenders to stave off foreclosures; often by reducing mortgage rates.

U.S. House Majority Whip James Clyburn was instrumental in bringing the group to Columbia. According to the CRBR report, Rep. Clyburn noted that “homeownership is the most widespread access to wealth in this country.”

According to an article in The State, 202 counselors were on hand to evaluate each homeowner’s situation; which averaged 45 minutes per case.

Even though the special event ends today, NACA will continue its work in South Carolina at its offices in Columbia and Charleston as well as its nearby offices in Augusta, Georgia and Charlotte, North Carolina.

If you are a homeowner and have questions, click here or call toll-free 1-888-302-NACA. Information is also available in Spanish here. (Español aquí)


SC Bar Pro Bono Winner Announced

Philip A. Middleton

Congratulations to Philip A. Middleton of Charleston, South Carolina!

The South Carolina Bar announced Tuesday that Philip A. Middleton of Charleston will be awarded the 2008 Pro Bono Award at its House of Delegates meeting on Thursday, January 22, during the 2009 Bar Convention at the Myrtle Beach Marriott Resort at Grande Dunes.

Mr. Middleton was selected for his significant contributions and ongoing pro bono work dedicated to an indigent client. Specifically, in 2008, after two years and countless hours of time and out-of-pocket expenses devoted to the case, he settled a land fraud case in Charleston County.

For more about Mr. Middleton and the Pro Bono Award, click here.

Stay tuned for more information about Mr. Middleton and the award next week as SC Access to Justice attends and will blog and Twitter LIVE from the South Carolina Bar Convention!


PS – I hope Mr. Middleton will be poised to pose for a photo (reference our earlier post You Could Be Famous)

SC Attorneys: Are you looking for a short-term Pro Bono Project?

Looking for a short-term Pro Bono Opportunity? Look no further!

From the South Carolina Bar:

Phone bank date change — volunteers still needed!

Volunteers are needed to staff upcoming Ask-A-Lawyer phone banks.

The Florence/Myrtle Beach phone bank has been changed to February 25.

Phone banks will also be held in Columbia on March 10; Greenville/Spartanburg on April 15; and Charleston on May 20 to assist the public with its legal questions.

To volunteer, please contact Debbie Morris at (803) 799-6653, ext. 158.


2 FREE Legal Clinics

NEWS from the South Carolina Bar, online at


• November 17–real estate issues, featuring Thomas H. Brush of the Brush Law Firm, PA. The clinic will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Dorchester Road Regional Library located at 6325 Dorchester Rd. in N. Charleston.   

• November 18–health care power of attorney, living wills, DNR orders and power of attorney, featuring Robin Grossman Poliakoff of Young Clement Rivers, LLP. The clinic will be held from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Center for Women located at 129 Cannon St. in Charleston.   

The seminars are free for anyone who would like to attend. A schedule of other upcoming seminars throughout the state is available online at For more information, contact the South Carolina Bar Pro Bono Program at (803) 799-4015, ext. 158 or (800) 395-3425, ext. 158.