Showing posts from May, 2019

The SC Insurance Data Security Act: Ask Some Questions to Evaluate Your Security Program

The  South Carolina Insurance Data Security Act  (“Act”), fashioned after the  NAIC Insurance Data Security Model Law  (Model Law), went into effect on January 1, 2019. South Carolina was the first state in the nation to pass this legislation, and others (Ohio, Mississippi), have followed suit. The Act requires that each South Carolina person licensed or authorized by the South Carolina Department of Insurance (DOI) a “Licensee” must implement, no later than July 1, 2019, a “comprehensive written information security program” (“Program”) designed to protect nonpublic information (NPI) and the security of the Licensee’s information system. In addition, the Act requires a Licensee to report to the Director of the DOI within 72 hours following an actual or potential “cybersecurity event.” S.C. Code Section 38-99-40(A) (Section 6(A) of the Model Act). While South Carolina Licensees (hopefully) are well down the path to meeting the Act’s requirements, the following may be u

Legalized, But Regulated: Commercial Hemp in South Carolina

On December 20, 2018 the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018  (the "2018 Farm Bill") became law.  Following closely on the heels of the 2018 Farm Bill, on March 28, 2019 the South Carolina Hemp Farming Act  ("S.C. Hemp Farming Act") was signed into law.  The following is a brief overview of the status of hemp (also called "commercial hemp" or "industrial hemp") farming and regulation in South Carolina in the wake of the 2018 Farm Bill and the S.C. Hemp Farming Act. Background The terms "hemp" (which has non-drug connotations and uses) and "marijuana" (no further explanation necessary) describe the same plant genus: cannabis. The difference between the two is generally based on the relative amount of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) contained in the plant. Hemp plants are cultivated to produce fiber and seeds and very little if any THC. Marijuana plants, on the other hand, are cultivated to produce more THC. THC

It's All "Backup" Nowadays? Wrestling With the Stored Communications Act

Shoulda' Seen My Servers .... Disputes of all kinds (between individuals, between businesses, between individuals and businesses, etc.) often highlight who said what to whom. In the information age, what better place to look for what has been said than in email communications? And as is often the case in litigation between jilted lovers and former business partners (acting like jilted lovers?), one party either has or can guess the email password of the other. However, attorneys and their clients must be very careful in gaining access to email communications to which they are not a party. The Stored Communications Act (SCA), a 1986 federal statute  prohibiting unauthorized access to emails in certain circumstances, has been given very different readings by the South Carolina Supreme Court and the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. The SCA The SCA provides a civil cause of action against anyone who “intentionally accesses without authorization a facility through which

Lamps Plus and Class Arbitration: A Journey Through Some South Carolina Past

But Bazzle Keeps Coming Back Up .... Introduction: Class Arbitration Castles Burning ....     Years ago this platform discussed at some length how more than one United States Supreme Court (SCOTUS) decision has considered the South Carolina Supreme Court's decision in Bazzle : in the context of who decides issues of arbitrability, as well as whether arbitration agreements allow classwide arbitration. (For that background, click here . For a broader survey of arbitration and class actions in the context of SCOTUS and South Carolina-- at least at that point in time-- click here ). SCOTUS recently took up the issue of class arbitration again, ruling in Lamps Plus that an ambiguous contract to arbitrate could not authorize class arbitration. Lamps Plus extended the rationale of  Stolt-Nielsen , a 2010 SCOTUS decision concluding that an agreement that is "silent" on the question of class arbitration could not compel the parties to classwide arbitration. As