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351Type of Legislation: General Bill GBIntroducing Body: SenateIntroduced Date: 20010220Primary Sponsor: McConnellAll Sponsors: McConnell, Holland and MartinDrafted Document Number: l:\s-jud\bills\mcconnell\jud0032.gfm.docResiding Body: SenateCurrent Committee: Judiciary Committee 11 SJSubject: Guardian ad Litem Program, court- appointed guardians ad litem provided in child custody disputes; Minors, Courts, FamilyHistory Body Date Action Description Com Leg Involved ______ ________ ______________________________________ _______ ____________ Senate 20010220 Introduced, read first time, 11 SJ referred to Committee Versions of This Bill
TO AMEND THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, BY ADDING SECTION 20-7-135, SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT COURT-APPOINTED GUARDIANS AD LITEM IN CUSTODY CASES MUST MAKE CERTAIN DISCLOSURES UPON THEIR APPOINTMENT.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. The 1976 Code is amended by adding:
"Section 20-7-135. (A) A guardian ad litem appointed by the family court in a custody case must, upon notice of the appointment but prior to the signing by the parties of the consent order for appointment, provide written disclosure to each party of the nature, duration, and extent of any relationship of the guardian ad litem, or a member of the guardian's immediate family residing in the guardian's household, with the parties and with the parties' attorneys.
(B) Failure to provide the written disclosure required by this section is grounds for either party to petition the court for the removal of the guardian ad litem and for the appointment of a substitute guardian ad litem. The court must remove the guardian ad litem and appoint a substitute guardian ad litem who must also comply with the provisions of this section.
(C) A guardian ad litem who has a relationship with either party or counsel to either party independent of a purely professional relationship must not accept appointment without the consent of both parties."
SECTION 2. This bill takes effect upon approval by the Governor and applies to guardians ad litem in custody cases appointed after the effective date of this Act.
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