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3058Type of Legislation: General Bill GBIntroducing Body: HouseIntroduced Date: 19990112Primary Sponsor: KirshAll Sponsors: Kirsh, RodgersDrafted Document Number: l:\council\bills\bbm\10026som99.docCompanion Bill Number: 532Residing Body: HouseCurrent Committee: Judiciary Committee 25 HJSubject: Noneconomic Damage Awards Act of 1999, Torts, CourtsHistory Body Date Action Description Com Leg Involved ______ ________ ______________________________________ _______ ____________ House 19990112 Introduced, read first time, 25 HJ referred to Committee House 19981209 Prefiled, referred to Committee 25 HJ Versions of This Bill
TO AMEND TITLE 15, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO CIVIL REMEDIES AND PROCEDURES, BY ADDING CHAPTER 32 SO AS TO ENACT THE "SOUTH CAROLINA NONECONOMIC DAMAGE AWARDS ACT OF 1999" WHICH PROVIDES FOR CERTAIN LIMITS ON THE AMOUNT AND TYPES OF DAMAGE AWARDS IN PERSONAL INJURY ACTIONS, AND WHICH PROVIDES FOR FINDINGS WHICH MUST BE MADE WITH REGARD TO SUCH DAMAGE AWARDS.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Title 15 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
Section 15-32-10. This chapter may be cited as the 'South Carolina Noneconomic Damage Awards Act of 1999'.
Section 15-32-20. As used in this chapter, unless the context clearly requires otherwise:
(1) 'Noneconomic damages' means subjective, nonpecuniary damages arising from pain, suffering, inconvenience, physical impairment, disfigurement, mental anguish, emotional distress, loss of society and companionship, loss of consortium, injury to reputation, humiliation, other nonpecuniary damages, and any other theory of damages such as fear of loss, illness, or injury.
(2) 'Actual economic damages' means objectively verifiable pecuniary damages arising from medical expenses and medical care, rehabilitation services, custodial care, loss of earnings and earning capacity, loss of income, burial costs, loss of use of property, costs of repair or replacement of property, costs of obtaining substitute domestic services, loss of employment, loss of business or employment opportunities, and other objectively verifiable monetary losses.
Section 15-32-30. In any personal injury action, the prevailing plaintiff may be awarded:
(1) compensation for actual economic damages suffered by the injured plaintiff; and
(2) compensation for the noneconomic damages suffered by the injured plaintiff not to exceed:
(a) two hundred fifty thousand dollars; or
(b) the amount awarded in economic damages, whichever amount is greater.
Section 15-32-40. (A) If liability is found in a personal injury or wrongful death action, the trier of fact, in addition to other appropriate findings, shall make separate findings for each claimant specifying the amount of:
(1) any past damages; and
(2) any future damages and the periods over which they accrue, on an annual basis, for each of the following types of damages:
(a) medical and other costs of health care;
(b) other economic loss; and
(c) noneconomic loss.
(B) The calculation of all future medical care and other costs of health care and future noneconomic loss must reflect the costs and losses during the period of time the claimant will sustain those costs and losses. The calculation for other economic loss must be based on the losses during the period of time the claimant would have lived but for the injury upon which the claim is based."
SECTION 2. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor, and applies to personal injury actions instituted on or after July 1, 1999.
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