Joe Miller LawJune 2017


F ollow U s

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Summer is a time for big vacations and travel plans. There’s something about warm weather after a long winter that makes people want to get away from their daily routines. This summer, my big plans involve — hopefully — taking a trip somewhere with my family. I don’t mean we need to grab our passports and take to the skies. If we can just get out into the woods and do some camping, I’ll be happy.

quarters in the caboose. In the past decade, automatization changed the way trains function, demanding fewer people. Without a full crew, there was no need for cabooses anymore. Seeing a creative opportunity, one of the Heavenly Acres owners decided to go around and buy up various cabooses. The cabooses at Heavenly Acres aren’t just decoration, they’re additional rental units for the campgrounds. While the exteriors look like they could still be hooked up to a passing train, the interiors have been completely renovated. They each have beautiful hardwood floors, new beds, air conditioning, an updated kitchen and bathroom, and a nice deck leading up to the door. The result is a comfy cabin of sorts, perfect for our family of four. I started in railroad law myself and have a soft spot for trains. My girls, Dalya and Emmi, love going to the campground, too, especially when they were younger and could climb all over the safety bars throughout the caboose. We haven’t been to Heavenly Acres for a few years now, but I would definitely like to visit again. In the summer, there’s a lot to do, including hiking, swimming, and other fun family activities.

reminded that life’s too short. You need to get out there and appreciate the people you have and enjoy time with loved ones while you still can. When we’re swept up in the stress of a busy week or even the comfort of daily schedules, it’s easy to forget how fleeting life really is. We never know when our time together is going to end.

Summer is a great time to step out of our schedules and take some time to be with the people we love. I’m trying to do that more often, whether that means taking a trip the beach house, hiking through the woods, or enjoying those rare nights when I get to be home in time for dinner. My family is important to me, and I love every second we’re together. – Joseph Miller

My wife, Carol, isn’t a big fan of tents, so we tend to pick campgrounds with cabins. There’s a place I really like near Shenandoah National Park called Heavenly Acres. Located right at the bottom of the Blue Ridge Mountains, you can expect any site in the area to be beautiful, but Heavenly Acres has a special feature you won’t find at many other places: There are train cabooses scattered throughout the campsite. Years ago, at least six people were required to run a train, and they shared sleeping

It’s been a rough year for us on the family front. We’ve lost loved ones and were

If you belong to a union or other labor-related group and want to schedule my presentation at your group’s speaking arrangement, you can do so by calling 888-694-7994 . The presentation is free of charge, offers important information for taking appropriate action in Virginia workers’ compensation cases, and everyone in attendance gets a free copy of my book, “10 Traps and Lies that Can Ruin Your Virginia Workers Compensation Case.” Education is the best way to protect yourself from making a mistake, so call now before it’s too late.

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Back in 1957, Cyril Northcote Parkinson wrote a book called “Parkinson’s Law.” It was all about time management and workflow, and it centered around one idea: The more time you have to do something, the longer it will take. If you have something you do two nights a week, odds are your chores will be done those nights so you can get to the hobby. The rest of the week? Not so much. Besides the obvious — turning off the screens — there are other tricks to managing your time for hobbies. One great way? Just schedule hobby time into your planner or calendar. Set a reminder on your phone, and when the time comes, just go do it, no excuses. Another trick, if you know you won’t get to it later, is to do your chores early in the morning. That way, when you come home from work, they’re all done, and you have time to work on your hobbies. Oh, and bonus — you come home to a clean house! In fact, hobbies have a lot of benefits. They “can be a healthy escape,” according to Dr. Beth Howlett, “and can be very beneficial to mental health.” And some

hobbies — like reading and exercise — can even boost your career success, according to the Washington Post. Plus, unusual hobbies, like beekeeping or playing a funky instrument, make for great conversation starters. There are also plenty of affordable hobbies that “trick” you into staying active, like geocaching or Ultimate Frisbee. Consider something outside of your comfort zone — with a welcoming community that’s happy to show newcomers the ropes. Never be afraid to stop people who are doing something that looks fun and ask them what’s going on. That’s how you learn! Dr. Kurtz sums it up best: “Maybe there’s something you’ve always wanted to do,” or “maybe something you used to love but stopped doing.” Her advice? Take that thing and run with it. “Just don’t follow that phrase with, ‘Ah, well. Maybe someday — when the kids leave the house or when I retire.’” Because we all know what that means!

A hobby? Who’s got time for that? Well, you do — at least according to psychologist and professor Jaime Kurtz. “We habitually waste time, creating the illusion of busyness. Facebook, email, Netflix — pick your poison,” she writes in Psychology Today.


“I was overburdened with my workers’ comp claim. Getting what was needed in a timely matter was frustrating. I was getting the runaround. Joe Miller Law was highly recommended from another law firm. I spoke with the paralegal, Lisa Hancock, at Mr. Miller’s firm. She was more than kind and pleasant and treated me like a family member. I wasn’t just another client. Ms. Hancock treated me with respect and compassion. She took care of all my needs and gave me inner peace as my full trust was in the hands of Joe Miller Law. This law firm comes highly recommended. I have referred others that have received the same treatment. Thank you, Joe Miller and Lisa Hancock. I am forever grateful to you!”

–Lloyd Edmonds, Norfolk, Virginia (March 21, 2017)

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We see this come up frequently with regard to cases where our clients are severely injured, particularly the ones where there is a very shocking trauma, such as a fall from a considerable height, a shooting, or another violent event that causes injury. What often occurs is that, over time, as the person heals from the physical injuries, he or she develops worsening symptoms such as severe insomnia and recurrent dreams about the accident. These are not just dreams, but actual experiences where the person feels as though they are “reliving” the work accident all over again. The person may wake up in a cold sweat or scream out during the night. The person may also experience “triggers” that set off severe panic episodes that can be so debilitating that he or she cannot function. There are also often elements of

depression surrounding the physical injuries and their consequences, which can prevent the injured worker from functioning with any degree of clarity or focus. These types of symptoms tend to be a part of what has come to be known as post- traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD . If you had a very severe trauma and have begun to experience these symptoms, it is important to seek psychiatric help as soon as possible. Usually, this treatment occurs after a referral or prescription by your authorized treating physician for psychiatric evaluation, so you can find out if you do, in fact, have PTSD and, if so, obtain appropriate care. What is most important is that you alert your workers’ compensation attorney of these symptoms, because it is important that the

diagnosis and treatment for the PTSD be added to your claim before the statute of limitations runs out. Otherwise, you may be forever barred from being compensated for the PTSD treatment. Even more importantly, we have often found that workers who are physically ready to return to work per their physicians are in no way ready to return to work from a psychiatric perspective, due to severe, lingering PTSD symptoms, which can render injured workers 100 percent disabled and unable to return to work. In order to prove this and obtain the appropriate work excuses, it is therefore imperative that injured workers receive the appropriate psychiatric care when required.


Joe’s Monthly ‘SOUL SNACKS’

Everything that has happened in your life until now is G-d’s will: if it’s G-d’s will, it’s the best thing in the world for you! This is not the spiritual level of the chosen few; this is simple Faith. - R. Arush Through idle chatter and evil speech about others, one brings upon oneself poverty. - R. Nachman

It’s officially the season of salads, and fruit salads are summer’s specialty! Enjoy this tasty dish as a side or main course. For some added protein, toss in a handful of slivered almonds or chopped pecans.

What You’ll Need ... • 1 pound strawberries, thinly sliced • 3 medium peaches, thinly sliced • 1 cup blueberries • 1 heaping tablespoon fresh basil or mint, chopped

• 2 tablespoons lemon juice • 1 tablespoon maple syrup • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar

1. In a medium serving bowl, combine the strawberries, peaches, blueberries, and basil. 2. Drizzle lemon juice, maple syrup, and balsamic vinegar on top. 3. Gently toss to combine. 4. Serve immediately, or chill for later. Step by Step ...

Recipe inspired by

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T he W ater of L ife | In Drought, One Man Fights to Save African Wildlife

Drought has ravaged much of Kenya. The government declared a national disaster in February of this year. It’s a drought that stretches through much of the Horn of Africa, into Somalia and Ethiopia, two countries that form the northern border of Kenya. Facing ecological disaster, a Kenyan pea farmer, Patrick Kilonzo Mwala, took it upon himself to save Kenya’s extraordinary wildlife — or at least do what he could with incredibly limited resources. He fills up his water truck and delivers what he can to a nearby water hole. On the verge of drying up, it’s a source of water the local wildlife depends on for survival. On any given day, elephants, buffalo, zebras, lions, and others compete for a chance to get their fill. Relying on donations from supporters, Mwala transports about 12,000 liters of water, or just over 3,100 gallons, to the water hole four times a week. The trip between his farm and the water hole is 45 kilometers (27 miles) round trip.

After making dozens of trips, Mwala says the animals now anticipate his return every other day. The animals will approach his truck, eager for a drink. On his Facebook page, Mwala posted, “Big giants … coming toward our truck with no fear, for we have a precious commodity they missed.” The Kenyan government hopes that this year’s rainy season brings relief, but in the meantime, Mwala will continue to do his part, dedicated to his task of bringing water to the animals four times a week. As part of his ongoing

conservation efforts, Mwala even founded a volunteer organization called Tsavo Volunteers, which you can learn more about at

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