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South Carolina: Pending Legislation Update

Posted By USFN, Tuesday, March 13, 2018
Updated: Monday, March 12, 2018

March 13, 2018 and May 1, 2018

by Ronald Scott and Reginald Corley
Scott & Corley, P.A. – USFN Member (South Carolina)

House Bill 4520
This bill is currently before the South Carolina House. If enacted, it would provide that there be a derivation clause requirement on all deeds and mortgages, executed after June 1, 2018, to include a clause setting forth the name of the party who prepared the mortgage. To be successfully recorded by the clerk of court/registrar of deeds, HB 4520, in effect, will require that all deeds and mortgages include identifying contact information regarding the preparer of the instrument.

One possible reason for this proposed bill is for the state lawmakers to seek compliance, by mortgage lenders and banks, with the state’s extremely strict Unauthorized Practice of Law requirements that a South Carolina-licensed attorney be involved in all aspects of real estate mortgage closing. See Matrix Financial Services Corp. v. Frazer, 384 S.C. 134, 714 S.E.2d 532 (2011), citing State v. Buyers Serv. Co., 292 S.C. 426, 357 S.E. 2d 15 (1987) (Performing a title search, preparing title and loan documents, and closing a loan without the supervision of an attorney constitutes the unauthorized practice of law).

Senate Bill 864
This bill is pending in the South Carolina Senate. It relates to the filing and recording of fees that may be charged by the registrar of deeds. SB 864 includes a $35 flat rate fee for certain documents to be filed and recorded, as well as a flat fee of $10 for other specified documents. SB 864 parallels its companion bill, which is currently at the same stage before the South Carolina House as bill 3337.

Senate Bill 833
This proposed bill is presently before the South Carolina Senate. If passed, SB 833 will authorize the governing body of a state county to create a procedure and method of enforcement that requires owners of residential and/or commercial real property to keep the property clean; free of rubbish, conditions that constitute a nuisance, debris, and other disorders that make the property unsightly.

Status Check — All three of these bills were pending as of April 2018. The status of each bill was viewed as of April 19 and is reported as follows:

House Bill 4520 — On January 9, 2018, House referred to Committee on Judiciary (in Committee).
Senate Bill 864 — On January 9, 2018, Senate referred to Committee on Judiciary (in Committee).
Senate Bill 833 — On March 14, 2018, Senate Committee report: “Favorable with amendment Judiciary.”

Go to http://www.scstatehouse.gov/billsearch.php, then enter a bill number to view the current status of a specific bill and its contents.


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