Judge David R. Duncan was appointed as a judge of this Court on May 26, 2006. He has faithfully and tirelessly served since that time and will begin his well-deserved retirement on June 1st. As advised in a prior announcement, no new cases have been assigned to Judge Duncan since March 5, 2023. Unfortunately, the decrease in case filings experienced in recent years prompted the Circuit Courts and the Judicial Conference of the United States to determine that many vacancies around the country, including our court’s, should not be filled at this time. Judges Burris and Gasparini will continue to hold hearings in all three divisions. The transfer of cases currently assigned to Judge Duncan (approximately 4,275 cases) to the other judges will be completed afterhours on May 31, 2023. Thereafter, with some exceptions due to the respective judge’s conflict, the case assignments are as follows:
• Charleston Division – Judge Gasparini is assigned all cases.
• Greenville Division – Judge Burris is assigned all cases.
• Columbia Division:
o Judge Burris is assigned all cases from Aiken, Bamberg, Barnwell, Calhoun, Chester, Darlington, Dillon, Edgefield, Lancaster, Lee, Marion, or Richland Counties (this constitutes counties where Chapter 13 cases are assigned to Trustee Mathews).
o Judge Gasparini is assigned all cases from Chesterfield, Fairfield, Florence, Kershaw, Lexington, Marlboro, Newberry, Orangeburg, Saluda, or Sumter Counties (this constitutes counties where Chapter 13 cases are assigned to Trustee Simmons-Beasley).
Self-scheduling calendars have been posted for May through September.
Conduit Mortgage Payments in Chapter 13
For Chapter 13 cases assigned to Judge Gasparini and Columbia cases assigned to any judge, parties should continue to follow procedures found in Operating Order 22-04 Conduit Mortgage Payments in Cases Assigned to Judge Duncan and Judge Gasparini for any case filed on or before June 9, 2023. As announced on April 28, 2023, the Operating Order 23-01 Conduit Mortgage Payments in Chapter 13 Cases governs all Chapter 13 cases filed on or after June 10, 2023, throughout the district assigned to any judge.
Chambers Guidelines and Chapter 13 Confirmation Form Orders
Due to Judge Duncan’s retirement, new common Chambers Guidelines and Chapter 13 Confirmation Form Orders (final and redline versions, now identical throughout the district), both effective June 1, 2023, will be posted. Changes were made with brevity and consistency in mind and are not substantively significant. With these changes, Judges Burris and Gasparini have no separate Chambers Preferences posted at this time.
The judges and the Court will endeavor to avoid disruption resulting from this change and appreciate your patience during this time of transition. If you need further assistance, please contact 803-765-5436 and you will be directed to appropriate Court staff.