Law Office Of William F. Underwood - May 2021

Justice MONTHLY

229-888-0888 • www.puttingpeoplefirst.law

MAY 2021

One Year Down—Many More toGo REFLECTING ON OUR FIRST ANNIVERSARY AND MANY OTHER ‘FIRSTS’

One year ago, as a pandemic enveloped our world, Priscila and I stood on the Lee County Courthouse steps and were married by Probate Judge Melanie Gahring. In attendance were her two assistants, who stood an appropriate 6 feet away from us. It was indicative of “the times,” but it was a surreal moment filled with tears and excitement for what was to come.

Little did we know just how soon it would all come.

Weeks after our marriage, we found out Priscila was pregnant, and this past January our daughter, Isabella was born. We lived with a pandemic and prepared to become parents — all within our first year of marriage! It’s been a whirlwind, to say the least. The biggest — and hardest — lesson I’ve learned so far is that it takes work to blend two lives and cultures together. If I had to sum it up into one word, I’d call it compromise. My life no longer consists of Rawson and I eating pizza on the couch until we fall asleep. Instead, it’s late-night diaper changes and more pets in the house. Both Priscila and I have had to adapt. Of course, this took some work. For me, this was learning about new traditions. I had no idea that Brazilians celebrate each month of marriage, not just the year. It’s nothing fancy, but they acknowledge another month of marriage with a nice dinner, a card, or a simple “happy anniversary.” Admittedly, I did not get off to a great start with this tradition, but I’ve since corrected the course. Since we started celebrating every month, I’ve grown fond of this little tradition. It's nice to maintain a small token of appreciation on a regular basis — especially now that we’re parents. Isabella has essentially become our “hobby.” We spend all day with her, and we’re at the mercy of her schedule. (I now understand why people get “dad bods.”) Regardless of how tired we are, we love watching Isabella grow. She just started moving her tongue and her arms on her own, and she’s started to smile more, too! Watching Priscila become a mom has been amazing. Being a mom is a 24/7 gig, and she may not always feel like she’s doing a good job, but I would be lost without her. She was so organized

throughout her entire pregnancy and has known exactly what to do each step of the way. She’s the queen of preparation. From where I stand, she’s a much better mother than she realizes. As we approach Mother’s Day, I can’t help but be grateful that I have Priscila by my side and as Isabella’s mom. I’ve learned how to change diapers and how to burp Isabella, but Priscila makes everything easier. She’s a great partner for this adventure. As for my own mom, I’d be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge this as her first Mother’s Day as a grandma. She’s fulfilled the role seamlessly. It brings me joy to send her pictures of Isabella and see how she lights up whenever she has a chance to hear about her granddaughter. Isabella may not remember anything right now, but I can’t wait for them to develop a relationship in the future. I’ve been very blessed and fortunate in the past year. While everything else was anything but easy, marrying Priscila, welcoming Isabella into our lives, and sharing that with my mom and family has made our first year of marriage all that more special. Here’s to many more happy years.

-William F. “Trey” Underwood, III

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IN DEFENSE OF RELAXATION

WHY YOU NEED TO TAKE YOUR VACATION DAYS

I f you’re one of the 50% of Americans who would prefer a higher salary over paid vacation days, then the thought of relaxing by the pool probably makes your skin crawl. According to a 2019 Allianz Global Assistance survey, most Americans would only give up their vacation days for a 48% raise, but as Forbes reports, about 1 in 5 workers would only need a 24% raise to willingly fork over their vacation days. The rise of what experts are calling “performative workaholism” is evident in the hustle-and-grind culture of working long hours, skipping lunches, working throughout the weekend, and taking very few breaks. But medical and psychological experts caution that addiction to the hustle comes at a price. Recent evidence suggests that working long hours over extended periods of time actually makes you a worse employee. As exhaustion creeps in, your ability to complete even the most mundane or simple task decreases. In those moments, it’s important to take a short break, but it’s also vital to recognize when your body needs an extended refresher. This could make you better at your job. According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Luxembourg, Ireland, and Norway have some of the world’s most productive workers. Coincidentally, they also provide many vacation days.

So, what’s great about taking a vacation? Experts at a Midwestern hospital system, Allina Health, report that stepping away from work for a short period of time can decrease your risk of heart disease, improve your quality of sleep, create a better mood, and boost your relationships. Researchers in the Netherlands even found that simply planning for and anticipating a vacation can improve your happiness level! If you can’t stand the thought of taking time off, you’re not alone. More than 40% of respondents in a 2016 survey said they felt they couldn’t take a vacation because there wasn’t anyone to cover them. Communicate your concerns with your employer to find a compromise. Start slow, too. Schedule a long weekend and pack your days with activities, like getting a massage, hiking, or traveling to a local destination. Look to travel sites like Expedia, Airbnb, and Travelocity for local deals and tips on the best vacation methods. Soon, you’ll be the biggest advocate for taking time off.

JUSTICE DENIED

3 TRICKS OF INSURANCE ADJUSTERS EXPOSED

After an accident, your biggest foe can be the friendly insurance adjuster. They may appear to be helpful, but insurance adjusters are in the business of protecting their company’s money — not you. To be good at their jobs, adjusters usually deploy the following tricks to get you to comply for less than what you’re owed. They try to settle quickly. You just want life to return to normal after an accident or injury, and insurance adjusters take advantage of that to get you to settle for much less than you are rightfully owed. Once this agreement is finalized, the insurance company will fully release its liability and close the case. It’s extremely difficult to receive more compensation — even when related injuries crop up in the future. Speak with an attorney before accepting or denying a “quick” offer. They say you don’t need an attorney. If only that were true. Insurance claims should be easy, but they’re not. Each one comes with unique circumstances that can affect the outcome, and insurance adjusters are aware of this because they deal with it every day. They have the advantage, and they

don’t want you to gain your own expert by hiring an attorney. An attorney levels the playing field and limits their ability to leverage the components of your case against you. They want to take a recorded statement. On its surface, this seems fair. You can explain what happened, and there’s a recorded document of that disclosure. However, insurance companies will use your own statements to disprove the case. They lead with questions and tactics designed to diminish your situation. For example, simply saying “I’m fine” can lead insurance companies to claim that your reported injuries and costs are excessive or falsified. This will endanger your case. Speak with an attorney before agreeing to a recorded statement. While many seem nice and friendly, insurance adjusters usually have underlying motives that have little to do with your well-being. Hire your own expert to protect you from their devious actions. Call the Law Offices of William F. Underwood, III, P.C. at 229-888-0888 and experience what it’s like to have your needs put first.

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STAY LOCAL AND SAFE

WITH THESE 3 DESTINATIONS!

Admission: $63 for children, $77 for adult Website: CityPASS.com/Atlanta

School will be done soon, and that means cookouts, family vacations, and late summer nights are just around the corner! Thanks to vaccination rollouts, families can enjoy local, low-risk activities without fearing the spread of COVID-19. So, make this summer one to remember with these budget-friendly local destinations.

We Value You! At the Law Offices of William F. Underwood, III, P.C., the trust we build with our clients is our most valuable asset. To show our appreciation, we would like to thank our clients who have referred others to us since our April newsletter: Rhonda Burns-Dukes & LaJuana Shorter Your recommendations are greatly treasured by everyone at our office. Clients can also leave their comments on our services through Google Reviews! These statements give us critical feedback and help other clients who are facing stressful life situations find dependable lawyers. Previous and current clients can also receive free notary services at our office. Learn more about this service by giving us a call at 229-888-0888. Visiting any large city, like Atlanta, can be expensive, but you can avoid the added costs of visiting your favorite attractions with CityPASS. With just one purchase, you are guaranteed admission to the Georgia Aquarium, World of Coca-Cola, and Zoo Atlanta, plus admission to two additional locations of your choosing. This makes Atlanta much more affordable for those who want to visit while being selective of the locations you feel safest to visit. Explore and relax at the Golden Isles Where: St. Simons, Jekyll, Sea, and Little St. Simons islands When: Check with each destination for hours of operation Admission: Varies by activity Website: GoldenIsles.com Whether you want to spend the day kayaking along the sea and relaxing at the beach or you want to plan a family day at the local water park, the Golden Isles is the perfect spot to escape without ever leaving Georgia. Made up of four small islands, the Golden Isles features a variety of beaches, golfing, hikes, fishing opportunities, and more. Choose from resorts and water parks, or opt to keep your trip natural and free with hiking and kayaking! Whatever you want to do, you can find it at the Isles.

Visit the Flint RiverQuarium Where: 117 Pine Ave., Albany Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday–Sunday Admission: $5–$9 Website: FlintRiverQuarium.com

Explore our natural river basin without leaving Albany! The Flint RiverQuarium is the perfect day-trip destination for curious little scientists. Watch big river fish and turtles swim by, and learn how this diverse ecosystem of plants and animals work together for continued growth. Developed in response to the devastating 1994 flood, the Flint RiverQuarium provides educational opportunities and an expert approach to construction and preservation, all while protecting the Flint River habitat.

Plan your adventure with Atlanta CityPASS Where: Atlanta Hours: Valid for 9 consecutive days

EASY & HEALTHY GREEN RICE

This rice recipe is perfect for getting your kids to eat their greens without realizing it!

Ingredients • 1 cup tightly packed spinach leaves • 1 cup tightly packed kale leaves, stems removed • 1 1/2 cups vegetable stock • 2 tbsp full-fat coconut milk • 1 tsp kosher salt

• 1/2 cup yellow onions, finely diced

• 1/2 cup green peppers, diced • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced • 1 cup long-grain white rice

Directions 1. In a blender, purée spinach and kale with vegetable stock, coconut milk, and salt. Set aside. 2. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, sauté onions and peppers in olive oil until soft. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. 3. Stir in rice and cook and toast for 1–2 minutes before adding the blended mixture. Increase heat to bring to a boil. 4. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until liquid has evaporated, 15–20 minutes. 5. Remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving. Inspired by 101Cookbooks.com

Thank you for trusting us to serve you!

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229-888-0888 www.puttingpeoplefirst.law

1918 DAWSON RD. ALBANY, GA 31707

One Year Later: Celebrating Our Anniversary PAGE 1 The Benefit of Using Your Vacation Days PAGE 2 3 Tricks the Insurance Adjuster Uses So You’re Paid Less PAGE 2 Your Guide to Safe, Affordable Summer Trips! PAGE 3

Easy & Healthy Green Rice PAGE 3

99-Year-Old Betty White’s Secrets of Longevity PAGE 4

HOW TO LIVE TO 99 Betty White’s Secrets of Longevity

Beloved “Golden Girls” actress Betty White is still enjoying her golden years. The famed actress celebrated her 99th birthday this January. While she told People magazine that she’s “blessed with good health, so turning 99 is no different than turning 98,” she also had a few tips for folks looking to make it to their centennial birthday. Keep Laughing “Don’t take yourself too seriously,” White says. “You can lie to others — not that I would — but you cannot lie to yourself.” White has undoubtedly provided many laughs to viewers over the years, but she’s not just playing it up for the camera. Laughter is part of what keeps her young. Be Optimistic White says a good sense of humor also helps her keep a good attitude and look for the positive rather than “dwelling on the downside.” Avoiding negativity also gives her energy. “It takes up too much energy being negative,” she told People magazine. Stay Busy With nearly eight decades of acting under her belt, six Emmys on her shelf, and over 120 screen credits to her name, White is no stranger to hard work. As she told Parade in 2018, “I just love

to work, so I’ll keep working until they stop asking.”

Exercise Your Mind In addition to her busy work schedule, what keeps Betty White

sharp? Crossword puzzles! She told Katie Couric in an interview, “I’m addicted. An admitted addict. I just can’t put ’em down.”

Find a Cause White is a lifelong animal lover. She calls her golden retriever, Pontiac, “the star of the house.” While pet ownership itself comes with proven health benefits, White has channeled her love for animals in bigger causes. She’s been a trustee and board member of the Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association for over 40 years and has done work to help protect endangered species in the wild. Funds raised from White’s official fan club, Bet’s Pets, all go to support animal charities. Embrace Your Vices White told Parade she loves vodka and hot dogs “probably in that order,” which just goes to show that you don’t have to forgo your treats to live to 99.

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