This morning while traveling on Augusta Street in Greenville, South Carolina around 9:10 a.m.,  I was in the right hand lane headed to drop off our two dogs when suddenly and without warning a Ford SUV came directly into my lane striking the driver’s side quarter panel and causing me to run into and over the right side curbing. Prior to contact I was edging to the right and pressing on the horn in an effort to prevent the collision but to no avail. After being run into and over the curbing I pulled into the exit of DryClean USA , I checked on the dogs that were a little shaken up in the back seat but more importantly noticed the other driver continuing down the road. I felt confident he knew what had happened considering he jerked back into his lane then put on brakes to stop but after I went off into a parking lot, continued on. 

Needless to say I was furious but more importantly I knew, not having a witness or third party to verify what had just happened, I was SOL (not a lawyer term). Why would I be &*^* out of luck you ask? Well in South Carolina in order to utilize your own uninsured coverage against someone that is unknown to you several circumstances have to happen, one of those being a witness to the collision. (  S.C. Code 38-77-170).  I got back onto the road and noticed he had been paused by a stop light further down the road. In an expedient manner, but not over the speed limit, I was able to get beside him to try and wave him over. Short of shooting me the bird, he simply gave me a facial expression I will keep throughout the process and waved back at me. I then got behind him and dialed 911 to pass along the make, model, and license tag number of his vehicle. After doing so, I then pulled beside him again and mouthed, "P-O-L-I-C-E" and showed him my phone. A funny thing happened, he pulled over. 

After pulling over into a church parking lot, I got off the phone with 911 and told them I would call back if I needed police assistance. He rolled down his passenger window and I said, "Man, you ran me off the road and kept going! What’s your deal?". A lot of my "fight or fight" response lowered when I saw he had two minors in car seats in his back seat. He immediately apologized saying, "I’m sorry, I must have had the sun in my eyes and just didn’t see you there beside me." I said, "Well, you saw me go off the road then you didn’t stop when I flagged you down. Why was that?" He just shrugged his shoulders and asked if anything was wrong with my vehicle and told me he had Travelers Insurance. Rather than wait on hour on police to do a report from conversations they hear from both of us, I simply used my Iphone to record down him saying his information, along with the date and time of the collision.  (I DONT RECOMMEND ANYONE ELSE USING THIS METHOD! ALWAYS NOTIFY POLICE).  In addition to having police come if you want to document things with your phone, go ahead. 

A more thorough evaluation of the vehicle indicates a noticeable impact point on the driver’s front quarter panel, ground up passenger front rim, and alignment that needs to be inspected at this point. My right shoulder and wrist are a little jammed from impact of curb but we will have to let medical professionals determine any injuries. Depending on how cooperative the at fault driver is in disclosing the truth to his own insurance company will be the true test of character. I will provide his name, work information, address and other particulars as needed, if needed to help with any further revelations. 

Most times the investigating officer will not write a ticket for "hit & run" if the other driver is actually there. Don’t get upset, just try and get the other driver to admit to it while you record them. 

LESSONS TO BE LEARNED FROM A LEGAL AND PRACTICAL STANDPOINT

  • If you are ever side swiped, run off the road, or struck by another vehicle that does not stop you need to be able to prove an impact occurred, you need to have a witness, and you need to try and notify police of the make, model, and license tag number of the vehicle. Otherwise you are SOL;
  • Always call the police and have them do a report, then you have all information on the other driver you need without "trusting them to do the right thing";
  • Never trust the other driver will tell the truth later down the road or do the right thing, always get it documented, recorded, videoed, or some verification at that time or place. 

SEE ALSO

Hit-and-Run Accidents in South Carolina: What You Need to Know

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Photo of Trey Mills Trey Mills

Floyd S. “Trey” Mills III knows that suffering a personal injury through no fault of your own can be a nightmare for the victim and his or her family

Mr. Mills was born on April 24, 1978.  His parents, Floyd S. “Butch” Mills,

Floyd S. “Trey” Mills III knows that suffering a personal injury through no fault of your own can be a nightmare for the victim and his or her family

Mr. Mills was born on April 24, 1978.  His parents, Floyd S. “Butch” Mills, Jr. and Patricia Yarborough Mills, were originally from Newberry, South Carolina, and soon after the birth of Mr. Mills, his parents brought him back to be raised in the same county they grew up in.

Education

Mr. Mills attended Newberry Academy from grades K-3, Gallman Elementary 4th grade, Rikard Elementary 5-6th grade, Mid-Carolina Middle School 7-8th grades, Mid-Carolina High School from 9-12th grades, Clemson University, and Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University.

Health Crisis

While Mr. Mills was a junior in high school he was chosen by his school to be a representative to Boys State.  This was a great honor and would have been an even better experience except, while at Boys State, Mr. Mills became unusually ill with blackouts, night sweats, and back pain.  Fortunately for Mr. Mills, his mother was an ER nurse at Lexington Medical Center, but unfortunately, for Mr. Mills that did not change his diagnosis of Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia.  Along with his diagnosis, Mr. Mills received a prognosis of two weeks.

Obviously, Mr. Mills has been blessed with his second chance at life and those who have been wronged by health care insurance companies and other types of insurance companies can feel confident in knowing that Mr. Mills can not only empathize with them but fight fervently for their side.  Mr. Mills’ cancer experience and his mother’s arduous yet unsuccessful battle against lung cancer were very trying times.  However, those real-world battles and experiences were nothing compared to the administrative and billing wars he had to encounter with Blue Cross Blue Shield Health Insurance. It seems BCBS would deny any charge over $1,000 without rational reasoning therefore prompting Mr. Mills to go to law school and carry the torch for those that were too ill to fight for themselves while the school yard bully beat them down.

College

Mr. Mills went on to Clemson University where he was very active in student activities along with academic accomplishments.  Mr. Mills was invited to join Calhoun Honor’s College, Sigma Pi fraternity, Golden Key National Honor Society, Student Government, IPTAY Student Advisory Board, and Tiger Brotherhood. Mr. Mills also worked as a student employee with IPTAY Scholarship Fund under the direction of Bert Henderson, formerly the Associate Athletic Director of Planned Giving at Clemson University.

Early Life

Mr. Mills was unsure of where his hard work and life experiences would best provide an adequate return to the outpouring of kindness he received during his cancer experience. Having received many blessings from the American Red Cross, Mr. Mills went on to be an Apheresis Donor Recruiter under the supervision of Barry Pollard at the American Red Cross Blood Donor Services in Columbia, SC after graduating Clemson University.

Running from his true calling, Mr. Mills fled to Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico to Teach English as a Foreign Language (TEFL).  Having spent a semester of college in Madrid, Spain, Mr. Mills thought he should be assisting foreign countries. Mr. Mills was certified by the Vancouver Language Centre in Guadalajara for his TEFL training.  Mr. Mills was in Guadalajara only a few months when September 11, 2001 occurred and helped him focus on his life priorities.

Law School

Mr. Mills went on to law school at Mercer University and clerked each summer trying to determine how he could best serve those less fortunate.  The corporate law firms never truly provided him with that personal feeling of assisting the common person in need.  It wasn’t until Mr. Mills became the first law clerk of the South Carolina Trial Lawyers Association under the supervision of Linda Franklin and lobbyist Michael Gunn that he realized where his education, life experience, drive, and hard work could truly benefit those who have been personally and directly affected by the negligence of another.  Mr. Mills wanted to be a coveted and much needed plaintiff’s trial attorney.  More importantly Mr. Mills realized the power of the faceless insurance companies, misinformed legislative members, and the true power of money and lobbyist in dictating laws.

What’s the one service you pay for all your life but you are actually penalized if you ever have to use it? Insurance.

Trammell & Mills

Mr. Ernie Trammell gave Mr. Mills his big break at leveling the playing field against the faceless and heartless insurance companies.  Mr. Mills works tirelessly every day in an effort to bring justice to those who have been wronged.  Mr. Mills has worked on both sides of the law and has been through some harrowing life experiences.  Mr. Mills has been tested and tried by many of the more traumatic events that life has to offer and now provides his services to the public.

Who would you rather have on your side? Someone whose resolve has been tested and tried? Or someone who has intertwined their morality and greed in such a way that they can’t tell one from the other?

Why haven’t you hired Mr. Mills to be your attorney yet?

Would you listen to the devil on how to get to Heaven? Then why listen to insurance adjusters?