Download This Bill in Microsoft Word format
Current Status Bill Number:View additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.
614Type of Legislation: General Bill GBIntroducing Body: SenateIntroduced Date: 19990316Primary Sponsor: FordAll Sponsors: Ford, BrantonDrafted Document Number: l:\s-res\rf\007judg.jh.docCompanion Bill Number: 63Residing Body: SenateCurrent Committee: Judiciary Committee 11 SJSubject: Family court judges, election of; to be elected by qualified voters; CourtsHistory Body Date Action Description Com Leg Involved ______ ________ ______________________________________ _______ ____________ Senate 19990316 Introduced, read first time, 11 SJ referred to Committee Versions of This Bill
TO AMEND SECTION 20-7-1370 OF THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO THE QUALIFICATIONS AND TERMS OF FAMILY COURT JUDGES, SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT FAMILY COURT JUDGES SHALL BE POPULARLY ELECTED FROM SENATORIAL DISTRICTS BY THE QUALIFIED VOTERS OF EACH DISTRICT; TO REPEAL SECTION 20-7-1410 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE NUMBER OF FAMILY COURT JUDGES ASSIGNED TO EACH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT; AND TO PROVIDE FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE OF JANUARY 1, 2000, FOR THESE PROVISIONS.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Section 20-7-1370 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 20-7-1370. A No person shall be eligible to the office of family court judge who is not at the time of his assuming the duties of such office a citizen of the United States and of this State, and has not attained the age of thirty-two years, has not been a licensed attorney at law for at least eight years, and has not been a resident of this State for five years next preceding his election, and is not a resident of the
circuit district wherein the family court of which he is a judge is located. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any former member of the General Assembly may be elected to the office of family court judge.
Any family court judge serving in office on the effective date of the provisions of this section requiring a family court judge to be at least thirty-two years of age and to have at least eight years of service as a licensed attorney at law who is not of that age or who has not been licensed for this required period of time may continue to serve for the remainder of his current term and is considered to have the requisite age and years of service as a licensed attorney at law for purposes of future re-elections to the office of family court judge.
Family court judges must be elected by the General Assembly for terms of six years and until their successors are elected and qualify. Family court judges shall be elected from judicial election districts, which shall be the same as the districts from which senators are elected. One judge shall be elected from each judicial election district by popular vote of the qualified voters of the district. The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court shall assign family court judges to the judicial circuits divided by the General Assembly and shall make reasonable efforts to assign judges to circuits according to geographical location.
C. Each family court judge shall hold office for a term of six years and until his successor is elected and qualifies, and at the time of his election he shall be an elector of a county, of and during his continuance in office, he shall reside in the county in which he is elected. The terms of all family court judges expire on the
thirtieth day of June thirty-first day of December of the year in which their terms are scheduled to expire.
D. For the purpose of electing family court judges, if more than one judge is to be elected from a circuit, each judgeship in that circuit shall be serially numbered beginning with the number (1) and the General Assembly shall elect a judge for each such judgeship. Any candidate for the office of family court judge in a circuit shall specifically file and run for a serially-numbered judgeship in that circuit.
E. When a vacancy occurs for an unexpired term in an office of family court judge, the Governor, upon recommendation of the Chief Justice, shall commission a temporary family court judge to fill such vacancy until such time as the General Assembly shall a special election is held to elect a successor who shall serve for the remainder of the unexpired term. Such temporary family court judge shall receive as compensation for his services the salary paid to a regular family court judge and in addition thereto shall also receive the subsistence and mileage as authorized by law for family court judges.
E. The terms of persons serving as family court judges on January 1, 2000, shall expire on December 31, 2001. The term of any family court judge whose term expires prior to December 31, 2001, shall be extended to December 31, 2001. Any vacancy occurring on or after January 1, 2000, and prior to January 1, 2001, shall be filled in the manner provided by law prior to January 1, 2000."
SECTION 2. Section 20-7-1410 of the 1976 Code is repealed.
SECTION 3. This bill takes effect January 1, 2000.
This web page was last updated on Wednesday, December 9, 2009 at 9:07 A.M.