Friedman Simon - May 2020

LEGAL BRIEF

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MAY 2020

Lessons FromMy Mother Finding Strength in Uncertain Times

I hope this newsletter finds you and your loved ones well. At the time of writing, our city is in the midst of a public health crisis. But, just as our team has worked tirelessly to provide the same quality representation despite the challenges, I am determined not to let this recent outbreak overshadow one of the most important dates on the calendar: Mother’s Day. Being a mom is a tough and often thankless job, so taking the time one day a year to show our gratitude is the least we can do. Many families will likely have their Mother’s Day traditions altered thanks to coronavirus concerns. Personally, I’m using this time to look back on the example my mother set for me and draw strength from her memory. I remember a chapter title of a self-help book that read “You Either Get It Or You Don’t.” Well, my mother was definitely a “get it” kind of person. She came from a generation that really had to fight for their place in the world — especially the women. Growing up, her parents dedicated their resources to send her brother to college, while she was expected to get by with a high school degree. This didn’t deter my mother, though.

She was both intellectually and emotionally intelligent and brought empathy and logic to bear in equal measure. My mother could disarm you with her wit, then empower you with her encouragement. Naturally, if you had a problem, she’s the one you brought it to. I came to my mother with every challenge I was facing, not because she’d solve the problem for me but because she’d show me I had the power to solve it myself. Now, as a parent, I look back and marvel at her ability to nurture and still allow her kids to learn self-reliance. I hope I can say I’ve passed on the same sense of empowerment to my own kids. But perhaps the most important lesson my mother taught me was to always be learning. She never gave up on her goal of getting an education, so on top of putting my sister and me through college, she earned her own degree. In fact, my sister received her graduate degree within days of when my mother and I graduated. It was an inspiring reminder that you can do anything you set your mind to.

she taught me — especially in moments of great uncertainty. I may not know what new challenges the future holds, but I have it on good authority that we have the inner strength to overcome them.

All in all, she was an incredible woman and an even better mother. I wouldn’t be who I am today without her example, and while she is no longer with us, I still turn to the lessons

Happy Mother’s Day,

“My mother could disarm you with her wit, then empower you with her encouragement. Naturally, if you had a problem, she’s the one you brought it to.”

Even to this day, my mother remains one of the smartest people I’ve ever known.

––––-Roger Simon

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Know the Full Cost of Your Accident

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are encouraging communities across the U.S. to practice social distancing. While this will help prevent the spread of the coronavirus, or COVID-19, it also means that social interactions will be minimal. In addition to impeding many industries and businesses, this has significant impacts on families and friends who can no longer visit each other in person. Luckily, the technology we have today allows us to stay in touch while still practicing social responsibility. SPRUCE UP EVERYDAY ACTIVITIES. Hopping on the phone or your laptop to video chat is a great way to reach out and catch up with loved ones. While folding laundry or doing other mundane chores, give a friend or your parents a call to idly chat; it can make your tedious tasks much more enjoyable. Video calls are also beneficial if, for example, you’re missing out on your daily workouts with a friend. Hop on a video chat to practice yoga, cardio, or other simple exercise routines together. LET YOUR KIDS CHATWITH FRIENDS. Kids can benefit from video chatting by staying in touch with their friends while school and other activities are canceled. Letting your kids connect to social media is a pretty big step, so consider signing them up for Yoursphere or Kidzworld, kid-friendly networks that let them keep in touch with their friends while you can monitor their activity. Get in touch with other parents to set up virtual play dates over video chats for your kids. They can even watch a movie or TV show together. HOST A MOVIE NIGHT. Speaking of movies, Netflix developed a unique way for people to watch movies and shows together: Netflix Party. If you have a desktop or laptop with a Chrome browser, visit NetflixParty.com to download the application. Once downloaded, open the movie or TV series you’d like to watch, create or join a “party,” then relax and enjoy the show while chatting with friends. These are only a few examples of how we can stay in touch during these concerning times. Talk with your family and friends and see what other creative ideas you can come up with together. Even though you may be apart from loved ones right now, virtual communication has never been easier or more plentiful. HOW TO STAY IN TOUCH WITH FAMILY AND FRIENDS While Following Social Distancing Guidelines

Under personal injury law, you are able to recover more than just medical expenses and lost wages caused by an accident. While it’s important to be compensated for both of these, they don’t capture the full scope of the life-altering harm associated with most accidents. That’s why you are allowed to pursue damages for pain and suffering. DEFINING PAIN AND SUFFERING The basic legal definition of pain and suffering is “the physical and mental distress suffered from an injury.” Thus, the term takes more into account than just visible wounds. Depression, loss of quality of life, embarrassment caused by scarring — these damages are given as much weight as broken bones. There are dollar values associated with surgeries and casts, but how do you begin to put a price on something like losing your ability to run around with your kids? CALCULATING THE INCALCULABLE Putting a price tag on traumatic life events is a difficult task, yet insurance companies will attempt to use impersonal formulas to try and arrive at a “fair” compensation. Typically, they’ll add up the measurable expenses of the accident then apply a multiplier to that number. There are several ethical problems with this approach. After all, the individual experiences and struggles of injury victims can’t be lumped together into a single equation. That’s why our personal injury lawyers at Friedman & Simon prefer to take what we believe is a more realistic and just approach. A BETTER PATH In contrast to the insurance companies’ formulas, we embrace the fact that pain and suffering is subjective, always keeping our client’s humanity at the forefront of our minds. Our experienced and compassionate lawyers will take the time to get to know you and your unique situation, so they can fight for your maximum compensation. If you’ve been injured and want a firm that will fight for your humanity, give us a call at 516-800-8000.

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Is your teen or young adult hesitant to buckle up, especially while sitting in the back seat? New legislation has been passed to enforce backseat passengers buckling up. If signed by Governor Cuomo, it will become the law in New York. We understand the initial misconceptions. Because of the clear, glass windshield — and the potential of crashing through it — some believe the front seat of a car is more dangerous than the back seat. That’s a myth; riding in the backseat without a seat belt is often far more dangerous and lethal. At Friedman & Simon Injury Lawyers, we believe it’s important to stay up to date on car safety and recently passed laws. In a car wreck, back-seat passengers not wearing a seat belt are eight times more likely to have serious injuries, and three times more likely to suffer fatal injuries than those wearing a seat belt. If passengers aren’t buckled in properly, back-seat air bags are often not enough to protect them. They can be thrown over the front seats and into the dashboard or windshield at a far greater velocity than front-seat passengers. Unbuckled back-seat passengers are also two times more likely to kill the front-seat occupant because back-seat passengers can crash into the seat in front of them and cause fatal injuries for both occupants. Teenagers and young adults are left the most vulnerable by the existing New York State law, and according to the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS), they are also the least likely to buckle up SECURING THE FUTURE GENERATION WITH SEAT BELTS

compared to any other age group in New York State. In response, the New York State Senate and Assembly have passed new seat belt requirements. If the governor signs this into law, any passenger 16 years and older will be required to wear a seatbelt while in the back of a vehicle, even if they are using a ride-sharing service such as Lyft or Uber. This can save hundreds of lives and prevent tens of thousands of Americans from being seriously injured.

Help protect the future of young Americans and many others by reminding everyone to buckle up!

Springtime Cacio e Pepe

SUDOKU

Inspired by Eating Well

Nothing is more comforting than a big bowl of cacio e pepe, which is Italian for cheese and pepper. This dish combines a wholesome flavor profile with fresh, seasonal ingredients to satisfy any craving.

Ingredients

• 6 oz multigrain spaghetti • 8 oz fresh asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces • 1 tbsp olive oil

• 1 tsp lemon zest • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

• 1/2 tsp black pepper • 1 cup baby arugula

Directions

1. Heat oven to 425 F. 2. In a large pot, cook spaghetti until al dente. Reserve 1 cup of water before draining and put spaghetti in a covered pot to keep warm. 3. Line a 15x10-inch baking pan with foil and toss in asparagus and olive oil. 4. Cook asparagus for 5–7 minutes and sprinkle with lemon zest. 5. Add 3/4 cup of the reserved water, Parmesan cheese, and pepper to the spaghetti. Stir until creamy. 6. Toss in asparagus and arugula before serving.

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INSIDE THIS ISSUE

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A Source of Strength and Hope

Technology Saves the Day How Do You Calculate Pain and Suffering? About New York State’s New Seat Belt Requirements Springtime Cacio e Pepe

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You’re Not on House Arrest

HOW TO GET OUTSIDE SAFELY

HEAD TO A PARK

Many people think that to observe social distancing they have to stay inside, but that’s not true. People can leave their homes; they just have to be cautious when they do. In fact, getting outside to get some fresh air and stretch is good for your health. Dr. Roy Buchinsky, the director of wellness at University Hospitals Ahuja Medical Center, says that getting outside for a few minutes “increases serotonin and dopamine and makes you feel good.” During this time when anxiety is running high, taking a few minutes to step outside is incredibly beneficial for you and your family. Here are a few ways to get outside while practicing social distancing.

If you live near a park that is spacious enough to allow social distancing, get outside and exercise. Taking a walk and riding your bike by yourself or with others in your

immediate household are great options, but you should not travel in groups of more than 10. Also, keep in mind that many states have closed playgrounds in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19. In addition to your local parks, the National State Park Service announced in mid-March that it is suspending all entrance fees until further notice. Park officials hope to make it easier for the public to enjoy the parks that remain open, which are large enough for people to explore while maintaining social distancing. However, many parks have closed in response to the pandemic. To check for closures and to get more information, head to NPS.gov. Keep in mind that while you’re outside, it is absolutely essential to use caution and practice all of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations, which can be found at CDC.gov/ coronavirus. Be careful and stay safe.

STAY HOME FOR BACKYARD FUN

Your backyard is a great place to get outside without coming in close contact with other people. Put up the family tent for a staycation and enjoy a few camping activities, like roasting marshmallows for s’mores, telling stories, and watching the stars. For a fun daytime activity, plant a vegetable or flower garden. If you don’t have a backyard, take yourself or your pet for a walk around the block, just be sure to maintain the proper distance — 6 feet — from anyone who has the same idea.

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