Where a defendant alleges ineffective assistance of prior trial counsel or appellate counsel as a ground for post-conviction relief or collateral relief under any procedure, the applicant shall be deemed to have waived the attorney-client privilege with respect to both oral and written communications between counsel and the defendant, and between retained or appointed experts and the defendant, to the extent necessary for prior counsel to respond to the allegation. This waiver of the attorney-client privilege shall be deemed automatic upon the filing of the allegation alleging ineffective assistance of prior counsel and the court need not enter an order waiving the privilege. Thereafter, counsel alleged to have been ineffective is free to discuss and disclose any aspect of the representation with representatives of the State for purposes of defending against the allegations of ineffectiveness, to the extent necessary for prior counsel to respond to the allegation.

In the case of a defendant who has been convicted of a capital offense and sentenced to death, the defendant’s prior trial counsel or appellate counsel shall make available to the capital defendant’s collateral counsel the complete files of the defendant’s trial or appellate counsel. The capital defendant’s collateral counsel may inspect and photocopy the files, but the defendant’s prior trial or appellate counsel shall maintain custody of their respective files, except as to the material which is admitted into evidence in any trial proceeding.

Terms Used In South Carolina Code 17-27-130

  • Allegation: something that someone says happened.
  • Appellate: About appeals; an appellate court has the power to review the judgement of another lower court or tribunal.
  • Capital offense: A crime punishable by death.
  • Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.