Car Accident Attorney inPacolet, SC

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CHSA Law, LLC Fighting
for Your Rights in Pacolet, SC

When an accident comes without warning, even the most prepared person can fall victim. One moment, you're walking to a restaurant after a long day of work. The next moment, someone else's negligence and carelessness change your life forever. Personal injury victims aren't just the victims of negligence they suffer from pain, concern over family and ability to work. Often, these victims do not have the luxury of worrying about work and family, because they're clinging to life in an ER. Without a personal injury attorney in Pacolet, SC, by their side, they mistakenly provide official statements to insurance agencies and accept settlement offers that only account for a fraction of what they have lost.

If you have recently been hurt in an accident, you may be asking questions like:

  • "What happens now?"
  • "How will I pay for my hospital bills?"
  • "Will I get fired from my job?"
  • "Will I be able to function independently ever again?"

With more than 100,000 car accidents in South Carolina every year, we hear these questions every day. Our hearts hurt for those who are suffering due to no fault of their own. Accident victims are not only left with questions like those above; they're also forced to deal with costs associated with medical bills, car repair, follow-up appointments, and loss of income.

While reading these facts can be bleak, there is a silver lining. South Carolina law dictates that those who are found responsible for your pain and suffering may be obligated to pay for your expenses. CHSA Law, LLC exists for that exact reason to make sure that negligent parties are held accountable. We fight on your behalf to make sure you get the compensation you deserve. We aren't afraid to go toe-to-toe with greedy insurance agencies who do not have your best interests at heart.

Our overarching goal is to protect your rights, and our law firm is uniquely positioned to do so, with attorney Michael Dill‘s vast experience in the auto insurance industry.

Personal Injury Attorney Pacolet, SC
Service Areas

We offer comprehensive vehicle representation for a number of different automobile accidents, including:

  • Distracted Driving
  • Drunk Driving
  • Rollovers
  • Multi-Vehicle Accidents
  • Automobile Defects
  • Roadway Defects
  • Speeding
  • Reckless Driving
  • Uninsured Motorists or
    Underinsured Drivers
  • Rear-End Collisions
  • Car Rental Accidents
  • RV Accidents

If you know you have been involved in one of the car accidents above, the time to seek experienced representation is now. Generally, car accident victims have three years from the date of their injuries to file a personal injury claim in Pacolet. That time frame can be reduced in certain circumstances. When a wrongful death is involved, surviving family members must take action in a similar time frame.

The bottom line is that speed is of the essence in these cases. When we sit down with you to learn more about your accident, we will help you understand South Carolina law so that you are fully informed before taking legal action. The sooner we can dig into the details of your case, the sooner we can fight for your rights.

We Recover Compensation
When You Need It Most

The law states that personal injury victims are entitled to compensation for the full extent of their injuries. Why? Because the primary goal of injury compensation in Pacolet, SC, is to help the victim return to the state they would have been in, if the accident never occurred. In the literal sense, doing so isn't possible. The law cannot reverse the incredible suffering and pain that accompanies a severe injury. As such, personal injury victims are entitled to receive a financial reward that equals those damages.

How much compensation you get depends on the facts and nuances of your case. With that said, you may be able to recover compensation for the following needs:

  • Rehab-Related Expenses like
    Physical Therapy
  • All Medical Expenses
  • Pain and Suffering
  • Long-Term Disability
  • Lost Wages and Loss of
    Future Income Earning Ability
  • Disfigurement
  • Emotional Distress
  • Mental Anguish

If you or someone you love was recently injured in a car wreck, contact our office today to speak with a personal injury lawyer in Pacolet, SC. The sooner you call, the sooner we can begin fighting for your rights and the compensation you need.

 Personal Injury Lawyer Pacolet, SC The-Cobb-Dill-Hammett-Difference
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What Our Clients Say

The Role of Negligence in Your
Pacolet Personal Injury Case

If there were one common truth that we can count on, it's that life is unpredictable. Sometimes, accidents just happen. However, when recklessness and negligence come into play in situations where accidents cause personal injuries, the negligent party can be held responsible under South Carolina law. For victims to have a chance at compensation, the party responsible for the accident must be proven to be negligent. When a party or parties are negligent, they fail to take appropriate care when performing an action, like driving an automobile.

 Car Accident Attorney Pacolet, SC
At CHSA Law, LLC, our team works to prove negligence
for our clients by proving:
  • The defendant had an obligation to look out for your safety.
  • The defendant did not uphold that duty.
  • There was causation between the defendant's breach of duty and the injuries you sustained.
  • You suffered real damages.

After an accident occurs, it is critical to take certain steps to help prove the responsible party's negligence and maximize the compensation you rightly deserve.

Steps to Maximize Compensation
After an Accident in Pacolet, SC

All too often, car wreck victims don't get the compensation they need because they failed to take the proper steps after their accident. Don't let this be you. By having comprehensive records of your car accident and its aftermath, you have a much better chance of protecting your rights and maximizing compensation for your bills and injuries. If you have been injured in an automobile accident in Pacolet, follow these steps before doing anything else:

1.

Go to a Doctor

First and foremost, seek medical attention for any injuries that you have sustained. You might not realize it now, but your injuries may be more complex and serious than you think. Damage like head trauma and back injuries are not easy to diagnose on your own and sometimes take time to surface. A full medical examination will help reveal the extent of your injuries, lead to a quicker recovery, and help document the injuries you sustained. This last part is essential to prove the significance of your injuries.

 Law Firm Pacolet, SC
2.

File an
Accident Report

The second step you should take is to report your injuries to the correct authorities. The authorities change depending on the circumstances of your accident. If you were involved in a car wreck in Pacolet, you should file your report with the highway authorities and any associated insurance agencies. Regardless of where you were injured and how the wreck occurred, the biggest takeaway here is to file a report. That way, you have an established, official record of the incident that can be referred to down the line.

Personal Injury Attorney Pacolet, SC
3.

Preserve Evidence
if Possible

Personal injury cases in Pacolet are won with evidence. It might sound like the job of the police, but it's important that you try to secure any evidence that you can collect relating to your accident, especially if you are injured. Evidence in auto accident cases tends to disappear quickly. By preserving evidence soon after the accident, it can be used in court. For example, if you cannot get a witness statement immediately after your wreck, their testimony may come across as less reliable. Completing this task on your own can be quite difficult, especially after a serious accident. That's why it's so crucial to complete the last step below.

 Personal Injury Lawyer Pacolet, SC
4.

Contact a Lawyer

One of the most intelligent, important steps you can take after a car accident is calling a personal injury attorney in Pacolet, SC. At CHSA Law, LLC, we will assist you with every step of your personal injury case to ensure that your rights are protected. That includes gathering all types of evidence relevant to your case. When we investigate your accident, we will determine the person who is liable for your losses. If there are multiple liable parties, we will hold each one accountable for their negligence.

Every personal injury case is different, which is why experience counts when it comes to car accident compensation. Our track record speaks for itself, but no number of past results will guarantee a perfect outcome. What we can guarantee, however, is our undivided attention and fierce dedication to your case, no matter the circumstances. Unlike other personal injury law firms in Pacolet, you can have peace of mind knowing your best interests always come first at CHSA Law, LLC.

 Car Accident Attorney Pacolet, SC

Common Car Accidents in
Pacolet, SC

At CHSA Law, LLC, we have years of experience handling some of Pacolet's most complicated car accident cases. Some of the most common cases that come across our desks include:

Drunk Driving Accidents

Drunk driving is a major problem in the Lowcountry. Drunk drivers are incredibly irresponsible and regularly cause fatal accidents because they drive physically and mentally impaired by alcohol. Drunk drivers have slower reaction times, delayed reflexes, and impaired vision, making them unfit to operate a motor vehicle. In auto wrecks, drunk drivers often come away with minor injuries compared to their victims, which is a bitter pill to swallow

Individuals who make a choice to drive drunk cause accidents by weaving in and out of traffic, going over the speed limit, failing to see pedestrians, and ignoring traffic laws. They may run cars off the road, rear-end vehicles, hit them head-on, or even cause a vehicle to roll over.

Drunk driving accidents in Pacolet care result in horrible injuries, such as:

  • Burns
  • Broken Bones
  • Head Injuries
  • Brain Trauma
  • Spinal Cord Injuries
  • Soft Tissue Injuries
  • Mental Anguish

If you are injured or have lost a family member due to an impaired or drunk driver, our team of personal injury lawyers in Pacolet can help. We have extensive experience with car accident cases and can explain your rights in simple, plain terms. It is important to know that you can file a personal injury suit regardless of the criminal case outcome against the drunk driver.

 Law Firm Pacolet, SC

Rental and RV Accidents

When accidents happen in RVs or rental cars, people are often unsure of their rights. This confusion is understandable since there are additional insurance and legal issues that must be accounted for in these cases.

Fortunately, the lawyers at CHSA Law, LLC, have the experience to help you with complex car accident and RV cases. Attorney Michael Dill worked in the auto insurance industry before becoming an attorney. He also has an undergraduate degree that includes a focus on risk management and insurance. When it comes to rental and RV accidents, we review each client's case with a fine-tooth comb. Once we understand your accident, our team will explain your rights and options in easy-to-understand terms.

If you were involved in an accident while driving an RV or a rental vehicle, you may find that your auto insurance company, the rental car's insurance company, and the other party's insurance carrier will try to deny your claim. Situations like these call for a bold, experienced personal injury attorney in Pacolet, SC, who isn't afraid of large corporations and insurance groups. We have extensive experience with insurance companies and know how to interpret policies. As your advocate, we will ensure that you receive the coverage and compensation you are entitled to, even if an insurance company says you aren't.

We can help you seek compensation in cases that involve:

  • Injuries from Boating Ac
    cidents
  • Rental Cars Injuries
  • RV Accidents
  • Jet Ski Injuries
  • Golf Cart Injuries
  • Rental cars
  • Boat accidents
  • ATV Accidents

Victims of RV and rental car accidents (as well as their families) may be entitled to compensation for pain and suffering, medical expenses, and lost income or benefits. Our personal injury lawyers work with life-care planners, medical experts, and economists to determine the amount of compensation you will need.

Personal Injury Attorney Pacolet, SC

Texting While Driving and
Distracted Driving Accidents

We live in a time where just about everyone has their eyes glued to their phones. Often, this happens in situations where the person needs to be paying attention, like when they're driving an automobile. Taking a few moments to glance down at your phone can cause irreparable damage to other drivers. That is why texting while driving is illegal in Pacolet. Typically, this crime is met with a minor traffic violation. However, when a distracted driver injures another motorist, you can seek compensation through a legal suit. If you have been injured in such a situation, our team can help you hold the negligent driver accountable for your losses and damages.

Texting takes drivers' minds and eyes off the road and their hands off the wheel. Because they are not paying attention to their driving,

They miss crucial road signs and information such as:

  • Changes in the Flow
    of Traffic
  • Traffic Lights
  • Traffic Signs
  • Work Zones
  • Bicyclists
  • Lane Changes
  • Incapacitate Cars and
    Motorists

At CHSA Law, LLC, we represent injury victims in Pacolet who are involved in all types of car accidents, including distracted driving. We work with vigor to recover the full amount of compensation you and your family will need to recover. You can rely on our attorneys for dedicated, representation throughout your case. Unlike some distracted driving lawyers in Pacolet, we will assist you with all aspects of your accident, including access to good medical care if needed.

 Personal Injury Lawyer Pacolet, SC

Unflinching Legal Advocacy. Compassionate Care

At CHSA Law, LLC, we are proud of our commitment to our clients. We pledge to provide them with the highest quality legal representation in Pacolet and treat them with respect, empathy, and compassion. If you are suffering from the results of a dangerous car accident, know we are here to assist.

We will help you seek compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and additional losses. Surviving family members may also recover funeral expenses and compensation for the personal loss of a loved one, including the deceased's future income and benefits. When you or your family's health and financial security are on the line, trust the best choose CHSA Law, LLC.

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Latest News in Pacolet, SC

Man pleads guilty to embezzling thousands from Upstate town

PACOLET, S.C. (WSPA) – A Spartanburg County man pled guilty to embezzling over $500,000 from an Upstate town.Callis Anderson Jr., a contractor, was arrested by South Carolina Law Enforcement Division for defrauding the Town of Pacolet b...

PACOLET, S.C. (WSPA) – A Spartanburg County man pled guilty to embezzling over $500,000 from an Upstate town.

Callis Anderson Jr., a contractor, was arrested by South Carolina Law Enforcement Division for defrauding the Town of Pacolet by embezzling money from a renovation project.

The project was to renovate an old mill building into a senior center.

Anderson Jr. was contracted between 2014-2016 to work on the renovation, according to officials.

“That dream was stolen from the town by this greedy person, Mr. Anderson,” Pacolet Town Administrator Patrick Kay said. “It will never be what was originally dream up for the town.”

The judge ordered Anderson Jr. to pay $115,000 in restitution. He is also under probation and will face jail time if he violates it.

The Mayor, Ned Camby, said he’s glad Anderson is being held accountable for his actions, even if the town is not getting the full amount back.

From the Attorney General’s Office:

South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson announces that the contractor charged in one of the largest frauds against a small town in South Carolina in years has pleaded guilty and been ordered to pay restitution of $115,000.

Callis J. Anderson, Jr., 68, pleaded guilty to Breach of Trust, Obtaining money or property Under False Pretenses, and Embezzlement felony charges in front of acting Circuit Judge Daniel Martin on Monday afternoon.

On Tuesday afternoon, Anderson provided $60,000 of the restitution immediately and was sentenced to two 10-year sentences and a one-year sentence, with all sentences suspended to five years of probation, provided the balance of the restitution is paid.

Attorney General Alan Wilson, who assigned prosecutors from his office to handle the case, emphasized the importance of prosecutions such as this one. “Contractor and other white-collar fraud can be every bit as devastating as losses from other types of crimes. For small towns, the outcome is especially devastating because they have less public money and are disproportionally hurt by these schemes,” Wilson said.

The case began in 2014 when the town of Pacolet had a dream to build a Senior Center, which they planned to do by transforming an old mill building Milliken had gifted the town. The town obtained gifts and grants to secure funding for the project and then hired Anderson to oversee the largest and final portion of the project, the transformation of part of the Mill’s old cloth room into a senior activity center, complete with a commercial kitchen so healthy meals could be prepared at the center.

The state alleged, and Anderson pleaded guilty to, taking money that was to be for the kitchen and other portions of the project and stealing it. Because of Anderson’s theft, the town ran short of money and had to take out a loan, which was supposed to be sufficient to complete it. Anderson embezzled a portion of that money as well and never completed the project, resulting in the town being in debt and having to repay grants and loans without getting the desired recreation center.

Reached for comment, Pacolet Mayor Ned Camby indicated “Today was a great day. Callis Anderson—the man who stole the town of Pacolet’s hopes and dreams of a beautiful, welcoming, and special place for all its citizens, but especially its senior citizens, to get together and play, eat, and socialize, has been held accountable for what he did to our town.”

The case was investigated by South Carolina Law Enforcement Division Special Agents Jacob Pridgen and Todd Ruffner and South Carolina Attorney General Investigator Valerie Williams and prosecuted by Deputy Attorney General Donald Zelenka and Special Assistant Attorney Generals Tracy Meyers and John Meadors. Mr. Anderson was represented by attorneys Rick Vieth, Jennifer Wells, David Collins, and Stephen Denton, all of Spartanburg.

SPARTANBURG, SC (WSPA) — Multiple streets and roads in Western North Carolina and the Upstate have closed due to flooding from the onslaught of rain.

Bagwell Farm Road is closed until further notice due to debris. Drivers are asked to use Glenn Forest Boulevard as a detour for Bagwell Farm Road.

Hatchett Road in the Walnut Grove area is also closed.

According to Broad River Fire & Rescue, part of NC-9 is closed at High Rock Acres. There are trees and power lines down across the area. Additionally, roads are icy, so drivers have been urged to avoid travel.

In Greenville, parts of the Prisma Health Swamp Rabbit Trail, areas of Unity Park, the River Street underpass, the McDaniel underpass and the Sliding Rock Creek Bridge are closed.

Water is rushing down steps at Greenville High School. Students are having an e-learning day due to the weather.

Boilings Springs Road at Sugar Creek is closed due to the road being flooded.

A flash flood warning has been issued for Greenville County until 3 p.m.

Streets in Hendersonville are flooded due to large amounts of rain. The city has asked that individuals to not walk, swim or drive through the flood waters.

According to the City of Hendersonville, barricades have been put in areas impacted by flooding. Drivers are urged to not drive around barricades. Citations will be given out to drivers who ignore barricades.

The area’s Flood Response Plan has been upgraded to Flood Level 3, which means that flooding is actively happening.

The following roads and intersections are closed either by the City or the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT):

Laurens County

Residents in Laurens County shared images of flooding in the area.

A small SC town trusted him with a dream. Now half its annual budget is gone.

PACOLET — Next door to Pacolet Town Hall sits a historic mill building that once was the center of the small Upstate town’s industry, but now languishes in disrepair.The town had a vision to reclaim the Pacolet Mill Cloth Room and Warehouse’s former glory by renovating it into a senior center.But nearly a decade later and more than $500,000 in public funds gone, the building rots and the contractor entrusted to fix it has been convicted of fraud.The money amounts to roughly half the annual budget for th...

PACOLET — Next door to Pacolet Town Hall sits a historic mill building that once was the center of the small Upstate town’s industry, but now languishes in disrepair.

The town had a vision to reclaim the Pacolet Mill Cloth Room and Warehouse’s former glory by renovating it into a senior center.

But nearly a decade later and more than $500,000 in public funds gone, the building rots and the contractor entrusted to fix it has been convicted of fraud.

The money amounts to roughly half the annual budget for the town of 2,300, town manager Patrick Kay told The Post and Courier.

Earlier this week, Spartanburg contractor Callis J. Anderson Jr. pleaded guilty to felony embezzlement, breach of trust and obtaining money under false pretenses.

The South Carolina Attorney General’s Office said it weighed whether it was better to take the 68-year-old to trial where he faced as much as two decades in prison or strike a deal that would have the town get back at least a portion of the money.

In 2019, the State Law Enforcement Division accused Anderson of stealing $568,360 from the town between the time he was awarded the renovation contract in 2014 to 2017.

In the Aug. 14 deal, Anderson was sentenced to five years probation on the condition that he pays back $115,000 of the money he was paid.

The town had hoped for much more.

“He stole a dream,” Kay said. “He stole a portion of the community’s future. The $100,000, the town appreciates giving something back, but it pales in comparison to what he actually stole.”

Anderson’s attorney, Rick Vieth, didn’t respond to The Post and Courier’s request to comment.

The Attorney General’s office said that while the restitution is not all of the money that was taken, Anderson wouldn’t agree to a deal that required him to pay more.

“It was best for the town to get the $115,000 rather than zero,” Robert Kittle, spokesman for the Attorney General’s office, told The Post and Courier. “It’s a sure thing with the plea, but not necessarily for the trial.”

New family center to help address struggles of Pacolet community in Spartanburg County

PACOLET — Residents living in rural areas of eastern Spartanburg County will have more accessibility to programs to improve their quality of life once the new Benjamin E. Mays Family Center opens in September.Spartanburg School District 3 donated the former Middle School of Pacolet building on Sunny Acres Road for the new center. The school closed in June 2021 after the school district consolidated Cowpens Middle School and Middle School of Pacolet.Pacolet, a town of about 2,500 residents, has struggled economically in re...

PACOLET — Residents living in rural areas of eastern Spartanburg County will have more accessibility to programs to improve their quality of life once the new Benjamin E. Mays Family Center opens in September.

Spartanburg School District 3 donated the former Middle School of Pacolet building on Sunny Acres Road for the new center. The school closed in June 2021 after the school district consolidated Cowpens Middle School and Middle School of Pacolet.

Pacolet, a town of about 2,500 residents, has struggled economically in recent years. It once relied on the textile industry to support jobs. With little industry and few jobs, the town's poverty rate is 21.2 percent, above the national average of 13.6 percent. The new center aims to help reverse these trends and offer renewed hope by providing access to services and programs offered through local non-profits.

Spartanburg News

"We are trying to build a resource center with programming and bring them to Pacolet so they don't have to travel to Spartanburg," said Jerry Rice, executive director of the Benjamin E. Mays Family Center. "I have been here the last four months working on getting to know people and develop relationships."

Rice said the center will open Sept. 7 with Favor Upstate providing support services for individuals and families affected by substance abuse disorders. Over the next several months, SC Works will begin providing job search and training opportunities at the center. ReGenesis Health Center, Hope Center for Children and First Steps Spartanburg will also partner with the center to offer services.

Spartanburg Politics

"We have some agreements already in place," Rice said. "There will be other programs run out of the center. People who live in small rural communities have to drive to Spartanburg for everything. We are working to find an easier way for them to get resources so they can can become self sufficient."

Spartanburg School District 3 donated 25 computers for the center, which will include conference space for meetings. The 50,000-square-foot building has two hallways connected to a space formerly used as a media center. Rice said the building remains in good shape and is scheduled to be cleaned in September. The former cafeteria space could be used to host meetings as well. Rice is also working with local churches to make people aware the center will be opening.

"The reception is people have been really positive," Rice said. "Trying to get the word out in a small community can be complicated and churches are going to be key in helping us do that."

Rice said the center could be used as a business incubator to encourage entrepreneurships. He noted that Pacolet and the surrounding rural communities continue to struggle since there are few jobs and barriers for some to transportation, however, programs at the center provide new opportunities.

"The old mill town has struggled over the years because everything was provided to them through the mill," Rice said. "They need to reach out and develop their own businesses and we can help them do that."

The Spartanburg Academic Movement has served as a consultant and lead in the center's grant writing process to secure more funding for programs. The center plans to use grant funding to offer a four-day program for 3K students. The Mary Black Foundation is also involved in working to secure funding for programs at the center.

Spartanburg News

"We are really excited about what they are doing in Pacolet," said Russell Booker, Spartanburg Academic Movement executive director, said. "They have done a really good job coming together in a strategic and thoughtful way with very little resources. Our role has been lead grant writer and support them in their overall work. What they will do is provide services not easily accessible in rural communities."

Benjamin E. Mays, a South Carolina native born in Greenwood County, was president of Morehouse College for 27 years and a mentor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who attended Morehouse. The Benjamin E. Mays Consolidated School in Pacolet was the first public school in the nation named after him.

Rice said the new center will include space to showcase Mays' life and contributions he made to the Civil Rights movement. A portrait of Mays hangs on a wall near the building's front entrance. Rice said the new center will bear Mays' name to honor his legacy and commitment to education throughout his life.

Middle School of Pacolet, formerly named the B.E. Mays Consolidated School, was built in 1953 to serve African American students. The name was changed to Pacolet Middle School in 1970 and later renamed Middle School of Pacolet in 1998 and Original Benjamin E. Mays School was added to the front of the building.

Upstate South Carolina Woman Hit With Tax Charges

“Render unto Caesar,” people. I don’t like oppressively high taxes – or the politicians who perpetuate them. That’s why my news outlet has pushed for years lower punitively high income tax rates – and other anti-competitive levies. But just because South Carolina has a regressive, job-stifling tax code does ...

“Render unto Caesar,” people. I don’t like oppressively high taxes – or the politicians who perpetuate them. That’s why my news outlet has pushed for years lower punitively high income tax rates – and other anti-competitive levies. But just because South Carolina has a regressive, job-stifling tax code does not give people the right to cheat the system.

Tax fraud only escalates hardship for the rest of us … which is why I support enforcement measures against tax cheats.

Earlier this week, agents of the S.C. Department of Revenue (SCDOR) exercised their enforcement authority against 51-year-old Shelley Ann Rochester of Pacolet, S.C. According to a news release from the agency, Rochester is charged with eight counts of assisting in the preparation of false returns, six counts of tax evasion, and one count of furnishing false tax statements.

The end result of all those alleged crimes? A total of $475,721 in “fraudulent medical deductions for tax years 2016 through 2021 on behalf of herself or others.”

***

Worth noting?

“The taxpayers whose returns were prepared by Rochester had no knowledge of the fraudulent returns and did not consent to them,” SCDOR’s release noted.

Which is probably one reason they weren’t charged in connection with this case …

Rochester owes the state of South Carolina $23,263 as a result of her alleged fraud, SCDOR noted, and could wind up paying tens of thousands of dollars in fines. She is also facing several years in prison.

Rochester was booked at the Alvin S. Glenn detention center in Columbia, S.C. on Thursday. Her case will be prosecuted by Allen Myrick in the office of S.C. attorney general Alan Wilson.

“By taking enforcement action against noncompliant taxpayers, (SCDOR) seeks to prevent unfairly increasing the tax burden on those who do comply,” the agency’s statement concluded.

Again, this news outlet is not in the business of defending big government in its routine pickpocketing of hard-working taxpayers … but as I have previously noted there is a big difference between clever accounting and outright theft.

SCDOR encourages anyone who knows or suspects individuals or businesses of committing state tax crimes – such as tax evasion or tax fraud – to submit a tax violation complaint form (.pdf) and email it here.

***

ABOUT THE AUTHOR …

Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven children.

***

WANNA SOUND OFF?

Got something you’d like to say in response to one of our articles? Or an issue you’d like to proactively address? We have an open microphone policy here at FITSNews! Submit your letter to the editor (or guest column) via email HERE. Got a tip for a story? CLICK HERE. Got a technical question or a glitch to report? CLICK HERE.

***

*****

Pacolet's funny lady has 1.2 million TikTok followers, competed on UK's 'The Circle'

Michelle Rider has always been able to find the humor in life and says she has her dad to thank for that.Growing up in the small town of Pacolet, Rider and her father recognized humor through everyday scenarios which later sparked her passion to become a comedian."My dad was a truck driver and loved to come home and tell these dirty, Johnny jokes," Rider said. "My dad would take me to go see Jerry Clower, and when he walked out on stage and be around people that were laughing was amazing for me. I ...

Michelle Rider has always been able to find the humor in life and says she has her dad to thank for that.

Growing up in the small town of Pacolet, Rider and her father recognized humor through everyday scenarios which later sparked her passion to become a comedian.

"My dad was a truck driver and loved to come home and tell these dirty, Johnny jokes," Rider said. "My dad would take me to go see Jerry Clower, and when he walked out on stage and be around people that were laughing was amazing for me. I wanted to do that when I grew up."

Rider decided to chase that dream and became the Southern comedian known as "Shelly Belly" on TikTok. She made several skits featuring adult themes about women and relationships. Her skits were popular and she decided to try stand-up comedy and performed for the first time at the Comedy Zone in Greenville.

"I just told my husband that I wanted to go and do an open mic," Rider said. "He looked at me like I was crazy, but all these funny things were in my head. It's about my life, being a woman, what women go through and all these things that are relatable."

From TikTok to 'The Circle,' social media boosts Rider's career

Rider's career began to kick off when her son arrived home from active leave in the Marines. Her son showed her a video that he made on TikTok, the social media app that allows users to create and share videos. Rider decided to check out the app and eventually reached a mind-blowing, 1.2 million followers.

"I did a video and said 'Look, I have 200 followers!' I thought I was something," Rider said. "He looked at me and said 'Mom, I have friends with 5,000 followers.' Challenge accepted. I was laying in bed one night and I did a video about my neighbor, and it just blew up."

Netflix's hit reality show, "The Circle," reached out to Rider, asking if she would be interested in auditioning. Next thing she knew, Rider was in the United Kingdom to compete in the show's third season with other contestants to win $100,000.

"The Circle" is a social media-based competition where contestants live in the same apartment building but are never allowed to meet and must communicate online. The show is similar to "Big Brother."

Rider was eliminated on episode three, but it didn't bother her and she continued with her growing career as a comedian.

"When I say that I went on 'The Circle' as myself, I meant it," Rider said. "The only benefit that came out of it was the [Netflix] logo and people recognizing me. I built my own brand and do everything on my own. I am thankful I had the experience, and it's not really owed to anyone but God."

The day before the show aired, Rider was laid off from her job at a distribution company. She was upset and trying to figure out her next steps, but her husband assured her that another door will open and she could continue to live her dream.

The bittersweet moment allowed Rider to focus on her dreams and further her career as a stand-up comedian.

The laughs that give back

Rider's platform has allowed her to not only accomplish her dreams but to give back to the community and fans. She said charity benefits are some of her most enjoyable shows.

"I'm doing a fundraiser in Greenville at the Think Tank Brew Lab for 'Just Say Something,'" Rider said. "I just got invited to do a benefit show in Georgia for domestic violence and child abuse. You do good for others and it will always come back to you."

Rider said the help and support of fellow comedians have helped her comedy career. Brandon Rainwater, a South Carolina comedian, is not only one of Rider's closest friends but is someone she considers a mentor.

"As a female, it's really hard," Rider said. "It's the hardest business to be in as a female. He [Rainwater] actually gave me my first show and the opportunities when a lot of people wouldn't. He's an amazing person and an amazing comedian."

Rainwater said Rider has both, the talent and the hustle.

"Her talent meets her hustle and not a lot of people can do that," Rainwater said. "Shelly is definitely putting in the work, and she definitely has her vision board planned out. It just works out together."

Rider recently announced she will be going on tour with comedian, Andrew Conn. The "Down Yonder Southern Tour" will take place on March 17-18 in Fort Worth, Texas. She also has tours scheduled with comedian Tanya Lee Davis.

Conn said he is excited about their upcoming tour together, and that their duo will make a shockwave.

"I think me and Michelle are gonna make a real good duo," Conn said. "We both started out on social media and both now into the millions of followers. It’s crazy how two strangers can meet and talk and then, boom, you're on together. I think we are going to make shockwaves in the standup comedy world!"

Rider will perform in Greenville at the Think Tank Brew Lab, located at 101 Airport Road, on May 4. To check out more tour dates, visit her website.

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