South Carolina law firm is turning 100, still going strong


In this May 2022 photo, Bill Harvey III stands next to a painting of his grandfather, W. Brantley Harvey Sr., who founded the Harvey and Battey law firm in Beaufort, S.C., in 1922, at the firm's offices on Craven Street. The firm turns 100 this month.  (Karl Puckett/The Beaufort Gazette via AP)

In this May perhaps 2022 photograph, Bill Harvey III stands future to a painting of his grandfather, W. Brantley Harvey Sr., who founded the Harvey and Battey regulation business in Beaufort, S.C., in 1922, at the firm’s workplaces on Craven Street. The business turns 100 this month. (Karl Puckett/The Beaufort Gazette via AP)


The Beaufort regulation business of Harvey and Battey — whose lawyers have served as some of the major political figures in Beaufort County and the point out — turns 100 yrs outdated this thirty day period.

That helps make it the oldest legislation agency in Beaufort County, explained Monthly bill Harvey III, the grandson of the founder, and a single of the oldest in South Carolina.

Even so, the century-aged company, housed in a nondescript constructing on Craven Street in Beaufort’s historic downtown, is not gazing in the rear-see mirror, Harvey adds. It is working with the milestone as a springboard for long term growth.

“Generally, when you consider of something that is as aged as 100 yrs, you think of it as dying — previous and dying,” Harvey advised The Beaufort Gazette and Island Packet. “We are not. We have a very fascinating, pretty energetic group of young attorneys.”

W. Brantley Harvey Sr. established Harvey and Battey in 1922.

Harvey III, Harvey Sr.’s grandson and the third generation of Harveys in the firm, credits “dedication to integrity” and the firm’s concentrate on public assistance, as opposed to chasing the “almighty dollar,” for Harvey-Battey’s longevity.

“Integrity is hard to preserve, and you can eliminate it extremely swiftly,” Harvey III mentioned. “Kind of like standing. You only have a person integrity, and it’s extremely tricky to manage with a multi-personnel corporation.”

Alex Murdaugh, 53, who labored for yet another 100-furthermore-year-aged South Carolina business, is a case in stage in how immediately authorized reputations can be shed.

PMPED, a Hampton-centered organization began in 1910 by Randolph Murdaugh Sr., Murdaugh’s grandfather, improved its name to Parker Regulation Group in the wake of Alex Murdaugh’s alleged scheme to steal $8.4 million from customers, which has led to 15 indictments made up of 79 prices.

Condition Sen. Tom Davis, R-Beaufort, who has been with Harvey-Battey for 37 a long time, observed that W. Brantley Harvey Sr. and Randolph Murdaugh Sr. have been 2nd cousins.

Even though Harvey Sr. moved to Beaufort and entered into public lifetime and services, explained Davis, Murdaugh stayed in Hampton County and created a strong legislation company.

“It’s type of interesting that two cousins variety of went on distinctive paths,” Davis mentioned.

Lively IN General public Support

Harvey Sr. died in 1981.

W. Brantley Harvey Jr., his son and Bill Harvey III’s father, joined the company in 1955. He was born in Walterboro and grew up on The Place in Beaufort. He died in 2018.

Colden R. Battey Jr. joined the business in 1963. He’s retired but however spends a handful of several hours in the business office each day.

The firm’s lawyers have been energetic in community services and politics from the starting.

Harvey Sr. was elected to the South Carolina Residence of Representatives in 1924, just two a long time soon after he established the firm, and once again 1926, ahead of becoming a member of the South Carolina Senate in 1928. He represented Beaufort County for 24 a long time right up until 1952. He was the principal author of the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act.

Harvey Jr. was elected to the Dwelling in 1958 and served 16 several years right until 1974. He served as lieutenant governor from 1975­ to 1978. And he played a significant position in getting the Beaufort campus of the University of South Carolina and in establishing the Complex Higher education of the Lowcountry as a single of the state’s 16 technical schools.

Both of those were Democrats.

“We have not affirmatively promoted community services,” Harvey III claimed, “but I consider it’s been a hallmark of our longevity.”


Political involvement proceeds now.

Davis, the longtime Harvey-Battey lawyer and Republican condition senator, reported Harvey Jr. was a mentor. He received involved with community support simply because of the case in point the elder lawyer set.

“We each experienced a enthusiasm for safeguarding the setting,” claims Davis of Harvey Jr. “We both cared about education and learning. We have been each pretty frugal about revenue.”

And nearly 100 yrs right after Harvey Sr. very first was elected to the Senate, Davis signifies that very same district.

“I’m really very pleased of the organization,” Davis mentioned. “I’m happy of the background of general public company we have.”

For his part, Harvey III has served as the town attorney for the Metropolis of Beaufort for the earlier 35 several years. He appears at that posture as a “quasi-general public company,” and he will take satisfaction in possessing helped shape the city’s insurance policies and progress in that position.

Colden Battey Jr. assumed a lot more responsibility in jogging the firm when Harvey Jr. was pursuing his political occupation. But Battey also was included in general public provider domestically, serving as chairman of the Beaufort County Council for 8 years. And he was on the board of the Beaufort Jasper Larger Training Fee for 17 yrs.

FIRM’S Cases

Now, the organization has 8 attorneys, and Harvey III reported it’s the only total-service regulation firm in Beaufort, working towards own injuries, actual estate, estate and relatives law amid other specialties.

“There are particular items we really don’t do,” he mentioned, “but there’s not many.”

The business a short while ago fixed a multi-million-greenback private damage situation in which an 83-calendar year-aged foreign nationwide was struck by a auto in Charleston, Harvey III said. Part of the circumstance has been settled for $3 million, while lawyers keep on to do the job on the remaining settlement.

Harvey III is most proud of a $39.4 million settlement from a 2014 nationwide course-action lawsuit involving energetic responsibility company members who ended up overcharged on house loan fascination charges by JP Morgan Chase Financial institution. The business represented Marine Corps Capt. Jonathon Rowles, the lead plaintiff, who alleged the lender violated the Servicemembers’ Civil Reduction Act. That law was enacted in 1942 to safeguard deployed users of the military from monetary duress while on energetic responsibility.

“We resolved that circumstance quite favorably for customers of the military,” Harvey III explained.

The company is selecting new attorneys, he reported. And it’s in the method of opening an workplace in Okatie.


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