Medical Univ. of South Carolina v. Arnaud, No. 25866.

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
Citation602 S.E.2d 747,360 S.C. 615
Docket NumberNo. 25866.
PartiesMEDICAL UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CAROLINA, Respondent, v. Dr. Philippe ARNAUD, Appellant.
Decision Date07 September 2004

360 S.C. 615
602 S.E.2d 747

MEDICAL UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CAROLINA, Respondent,
v.
Dr. Philippe ARNAUD, Appellant

No. 25866.

Supreme Court of South Carolina.

Heard June 23, 2004.

Decided September 7, 2004.


360 S.C. 616
Francis T. Draine, of Columbia, for appellant

Stephen L. Brown, Nancy Bloodgood, and Carol B. Ervin, of Young, Clement, Rivers & Tisdale, L.L.P., of Charleston, for respondent.

Justice MOORE:

Respondent (MUSC) filed a breach of contract and declaratory judgment action against appellant (Dr. Arnaud) following Dr. Arnaud's refusal to leave his employment. The trial court granted MUSC's motion for summary judgment. After certifying this case from the Court of Appeals pursuant to Rule 204(b), SCACR, we affirm.

360 S.C. 617
FACTS

Dr. Arnaud entered into an Agreement of Resignation (agreement) with MUSC in July 1998. In this agreement, Dr. Arnaud agreed to irrevocably resign his employment with MUSC's Department of Immunology and Microbiology as of June 30, 2002, in exchange for a ten percent increase in his base salary for the fiscal years of 1998/1999, 1999/2000, 2000/2001, and 2001/2002. No attempt was made to modify the agreement after signing.

In August 2001, Dr. Arnaud attended a seminar concerning the Teacher and Employee Retention Incentive (TERI) program. Dr. Arnaud's impression after the seminar was that if he entered TERI, his participation in the program would give him the right to keep his position at MUSC.1

As of October 1, 2001, Dr. Arnaud entered the TERI program, which did not affect his job in any manner. The Dean of MUSC wrote Dr. Arnaud a letter on October 22 informing him that, although he had entered the TERI program, he would still have to retire at the end of June 2002 pursuant to his agreement with MUSC.2 Joe Good, General Counsel to MUSC, wrote a letter to Dr. Arnaud on December 10, 2001. In this letter, Good indicated that Dr. Arnaud's TERI participation would not alter the prior agreement and that Dr. Arnaud's employment would terminate in June 2002. However, in April 2002, counsel for Dr. Arnaud sent a letter to Good stating that Dr. Arnaud was entitled to work at MUSC

360 S.C. 618
for another five years from the date he entered the TERI program.3

During his deposition, Dr. Arnaud gave inconsistent testimony. He testified Good told him TERI superseded the agreement and that he could continue to work under TERI. However, he also testified he was not told by anyone that TERI would supersede his agreement. Specifically, Dr. Arnaud acknowledged that no one in his department had informed him that after he entered TERI, his previous agreement was no longer in effect and that he would be guaranteed a job for five years if he signed up for TERI. Dr. Arnaud stated that Good, the counsel for MUSC, told him resignation agreements could be changed and new agreements could be entered into, but, he acknowledged, counsel was not specifically talking about his agreement. Dr. Arnaud testified Good told him that, even though the agreement did not mention TERI, he could join TERI. Dr. Arnaud acknowledged that Good did not tell him he did not have to resign in June 2002.

Holly Maben, the benefits coordinator of MUSC, gave an affidavit in which she stated she told Dr. Arnaud the agreement controlled over his TERI application and he would have to terminate his employment on June 30, 2002, despite his TERI participation. She stated he was given five years on the TERI application only so he could continue TERI participation if he decided to work for another state employer when he left MUSC.4

The trial court found MUSC was entitled to summary judgment on its breach of contract claim and was entitled to...

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29 practice notes
  • Miller v. Blumenthal Mills, Inc., No. 4013.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • July 5, 2005
    ...be drawn therefrom must be viewed in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party. Medical Univ. of South Carolina v. Arnaud, 360 S.C. 615, 602 S.E.2d 747 (2004); Rife v. Hitachi Constr. Mach. Co., Ltd., 363 S.C. 209, 609 S.E.2d 565 (Ct.App.2005). If triable issues exist, those issues mu......
  • Hooper v. Ebenezer Senior Services, No. 4350.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • March 10, 2008
    ...to the non-moving party. Helms Realty, Inc. v. Gibson-Wall Co., 363 S.C. 334, 611 S.E.2d 485 (2005); Medical Univ. of S.C. v. Arnaud, 360 S.C. 615, 602 S.E.2d 747 (2004); Hackworth v. Greenville County, 371 S.C. 99, 102, 637 S.E.2d 320, 322 (Ct.App.2006); Rife v. Hitachi Constr. Mach. Co., ......
  • Moore v. Weinberg, No. 4209.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • February 20, 2007
    ...be drawn therefrom must be viewed in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party. Medical Univ. of South Carolina v. Arnaud, 360 S.C. 615, 602 S.E.2d 747 (2004); Rife v. Hitachi Constr. Mach. Co., Ltd., 363 S.C. 209, 609 S.E.2d 565 (Ct. App.2005). If triable issues exist, those issues m......
  • Singleton v. Sherer, No. 4346.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • February 25, 2008
    ...party. Catawba Indian Tribe of South Carolina v. State, 372 S.C. 519, 642 S.E.2d 751 (2007); Medical Univ. of South Carolina v. Arnaud, 360 S.C. 615, 602 S.E.2d 747 (2004); Moore v. Weinberg, 373 S.C. 209, 216, 644 S.E.2d 740, 743 (Ct.App.2007); Rife v. Hitachi Constr. Mach. Co., Ltd., 363 ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
29 cases
  • Miller v. Blumenthal Mills, Inc., No. 4013.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • July 5, 2005
    ...be drawn therefrom must be viewed in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party. Medical Univ. of South Carolina v. Arnaud, 360 S.C. 615, 602 S.E.2d 747 (2004); Rife v. Hitachi Constr. Mach. Co., Ltd., 363 S.C. 209, 609 S.E.2d 565 (Ct.App.2005). If triable issues exist, those issues mu......
  • Hooper v. Ebenezer Senior Services, No. 4350.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • March 10, 2008
    ...to the non-moving party. Helms Realty, Inc. v. Gibson-Wall Co., 363 S.C. 334, 611 S.E.2d 485 (2005); Medical Univ. of S.C. v. Arnaud, 360 S.C. 615, 602 S.E.2d 747 (2004); Hackworth v. Greenville County, 371 S.C. 99, 102, 637 S.E.2d 320, 322 (Ct.App.2006); Rife v. Hitachi Constr. Mach. Co., ......
  • Moore v. Weinberg, No. 4209.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • February 20, 2007
    ...be drawn therefrom must be viewed in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party. Medical Univ. of South Carolina v. Arnaud, 360 S.C. 615, 602 S.E.2d 747 (2004); Rife v. Hitachi Constr. Mach. Co., Ltd., 363 S.C. 209, 609 S.E.2d 565 (Ct. App.2005). If triable issues exist, those issues m......
  • Singleton v. Sherer, No. 4346.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • February 25, 2008
    ...party. Catawba Indian Tribe of South Carolina v. State, 372 S.C. 519, 642 S.E.2d 751 (2007); Medical Univ. of South Carolina v. Arnaud, 360 S.C. 615, 602 S.E.2d 747 (2004); Moore v. Weinberg, 373 S.C. 209, 216, 644 S.E.2d 740, 743 (Ct.App.2007); Rife v. Hitachi Constr. Mach. Co., Ltd., 363 ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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