News & Blog

Compensation for Injuries Sustained for Unexplained Falls Arising in the Course and Scope of Employment

By Gibbs Leaphart The South Carolina Supreme Court reversed two Court of Appeals decisions last week in workers’ compensation.  In addressing two similar cases involving level floor falls, the Court apparently sought to clarify the analysis of idiopathic and unexplained falls in workers’ compensation law with what it believed to be shifting the burden to the […]

Posted on January 27th, 2015

Hill: It Takes a Village to Raise a Lawyer

As attorneys, we all work hard to give the impression that we are in control and can handle whatever the other side or the court may throw at us.  We try to give our clients the idea that we have all the answers.  Yet, we cannot do it alone.  We need a village to succeed. […]

Posted on January 6th, 2015

Domestic Violence in South Carolina and Our Efforts to Curb It

By Bess DuRant South Carolina has a serious domestic violence problem.  36,000 incidents of domestic violence occur in South Carolina every year.  Doug Pardue, Glenn Smith, Jennifer Barry Hawes, & Natalie Caula Hauff, Till Death Do Us Part, The Post and Courier, available at  Moreover, several of those incidents resulted in the woman’s death, […]

Posted on December 18th, 2014

Families Helping Families

Our Sowell Gray family adopted two families to help this year for Christmas through The Palmetto Project, Families Helping Families.  With the generous donations of our staff and attorneys, we are able to donate all of these presents to the families!

Posted on December 11th, 2014

A Perspective from the Chair of Leadership Columbia

By Nick Haigler Leadership Columbia (LC) Class of 2015, comprised of 60 existing and emerging leaders with the Columbia area, kicked off their year in August with orientation at Edventure and in September with a class retreat at Camp Kinard in Batesburg.  From these incredible experiences, the class has chosen and developed their class project, […]

Posted on November 26th, 2014

Tyson certified as Circuit Court mediator

COLUMBIA, SC – Rob Tyson, member of Sowell Gray Stepp & Laffitte, LLC, has been certified by the South Carolina Supreme Court’s Board of Arbitrator and Mediator Certification as a Circuit Court mediator. This certification allows Tyson to serve as a neutral and impartial communicator between parties to encourage and facilitate resolution of a dispute. […]

Posted on November 12th, 2014

Watson: Lawyers proudly work to assist military veterans

As Veterans Day approaches, we salute our military’s role in preserving the freedoms we sometimes take for granted. Every day members of our nation’s military serve on the front lines, risking their lives to protect the freedoms and democracy we enjoy. The South Carolina legal community is proud to serve and assist our veterans who […]

Posted on November 11th, 2014

Richland County Bar Association Past Presidents Reception

We hosted a reception honoring the past presidents of the Richland County Bar Association in our office yesterday evening. It was so nice to speak with those who helped shape the history of the Richland County Bar.  A good time was had by all!  

Posted on November 7th, 2014

The 38th Annual SCWCEA Conference Wrap-up, including the importance of file review during the first 150 days of a claim

By Bob Horner The Sowell Gray Stepp and Laffitte workers’ compensation team recently attended the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Educational Association (SCWCEA) 38th Annual Educational Conference in Hilton Head, South Carolina.  The Annual Conference is designed to educate those who are involved in workers’ compensation claims in the state, including attorneys, employers, and claims’ adjusters.  […]

Posted on November 3rd, 2014

Sowell Gray included in 2015 edition of Best Law Firms in America

Sowell Gray Stepp & Laffitte, LLC has been ranked among the nation’s most prominent law firms in key practice areas by U.S. News – Best Lawyers, a publication that recognizes the top practices in the nation, including four Tier One rankings. Sowell Gray was recognized as a Tier One law firm in four areas: commercial litigation; […]

Posted on November 3rd, 2014

Sowell Gray participates in Light the Night Walk

Sowell Gray’s team raised over $3390 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night Walk! Many thanks to our generous family, friends and colleagues who helped us reach our goal. We had a great time participating in this special event!

Posted on October 31st, 2014

Beard elected to South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Education Association Board

Grady Beard, a member of Sowell Gray Stepp & Laffitte, LLC, has been elected to the Board of Directors of SCWCEA. Beard was unanimously elected by the board to fill an unexpired seat. SCWCEA is a non-profit organization of over 800 workers’ compensation professionals in South Carolina that conducts educational programs and provides educational resources […]

Posted on October 29th, 2014

Five Tips on Appellate Writing from a Former Law Clerk

By Ben Gooding When I first started at the South Carolina Court of Appeals, a fellow law clerk described my new place of employment as a “written court.” At that time, the description didn’t make much sense to me.  However, over the next two years, I discovered the description was actually quite fitting.  While parties […]

Posted on October 15th, 2014

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Light The Night Walk

Sowell Gray will be participating in the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Light The Night Walk at Finley Park on Thursday, October 30. The funds raised will provide treatments to save the lives of patients affected with these diseases. There are multiple ways you can help. You can walk with us and hundreds of others; you can make […]

Posted on October 10th, 2014

SCWLA Convention

The South Carolina Women Lawyers Association is celebrating its 20th Anniversary at this year’s convention, held in the Isle of Palms. Sowell Gray is well represented at the convention- Tina Cundari, Betsy Gray, Amy Hill, Becky Laffitte and Beth Richardson are all in attendance! Betsy Gray was asked to speak on a panel of former South Carolina Bar presidents […]

Posted on October 10th, 2014

Fourth Circuit expands the scope of Rule 60(a), FRCP

By Bobby Stepp Rule 60(a) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that “[t]he court may correct a clerical mistake or a mistake arising from oversight whenever one is found in a judgment, order, or other part of the record.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(a). In Sartin v. McNair Law Firm, P.A., 756 F.3d […]

Posted on September 29th, 2014

A look inside the John Belton O’Neall Inn of Court

By Alexis Lindsay, Inn Secretary The first meeting of the year for the John Belton O’Neall Inn of Court took place on Wednesday, September 17th at the Bar Conference Center. Our local Inn is modeled off of London’s Inns of Court, and its purpose is to foster excellence in professionalism, ethics, civility, and legal skills. […]

Posted on September 22nd, 2014

Recent Supreme Court FOIA Rulings

By Rob Tyson This summer, the South Carolina Supreme Court has issued three rulings concerning the application of the Freedom of Information Act, S.C. Code Ann. §§ 30-4-10 et seq. (1991 & Supp. 2013) (“FOIA”).  See Lambries v. Saluda County Council, Op. No. 27400 (S.C. Sup. Ct. filed June 18, 2014) (Shearouse Adv. Sh. No. […]

Posted on August 28th, 2014

Workers’ Compensation: Kickball injury arose out of and in the course of employment

In a 3-2 decision, the South Carolina Supreme Court reversed a decision of the Workers’ Compensation Commission today and held that the claimant was entitled to workers’ compensation benefits for injuries he sustained during a kickball game.  The court found that because claimant organized the game as a company “team building event” that claimant was […]

Posted on August 27th, 2014

Legal Malpractice: Withdrawal from the attorney-client relationship

The South Carolina Court of Appeals affirmed a $270,000 jury verdict today against an attorney for legal malpractice.  In its opinion, the Court of Appeals reminds the bar that “[a]n attorney may not end an attorney-client relationship, and thus relieve himself of the duties arising under it, by unilaterally deciding to allow another attorney to […]

Posted on August 27th, 2014