Law Offices of Paul Levin - July 2018

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CONNECTICUT SUMMERS ARE HARD TO BEAT So Many Attractions, All About an Hour Away

T here’s nothing like a Connecticut summer. Every direction provides an opportunity to experience something new and exciting. If you head east, you have the shoreline of the Long Island Sound with great beaches. Head west and there are rolling hills and beautiful mountains. From the moment you start your car, you’re one hour from a bounty of unforgettable moments. We live in a small state, but we sure have huge attractions. Paul lives west of the Connecticut River, and Kelly lives east, but they both love the variety Hartford has to offer. The abundance of opportunities for children is incredible. Lake Compounce is a local staple for most of us, but it’s surprising how few people know it’s the oldest amusement park in the country. Boulder Dash has been voted the No. 1 wooden roller coaster, mainly because you feel like you’re being transported into the past as you cut through the luscious green trees of summer. If you and your kids aren’t thrill-seekers, you can head over to the Beardsley Zoo in Bridgeport. The Amur tiger cubs are a must-see. Both Reka and Zeya are sure to melt your heart. Of course, there’s the Lego factory, where you can get a behind-the-scenes tour of one of the world’s most nostalgic toys. If you want to kick it up a notch, the Connecticut Science Center offers a mind-blowing experience that will leave your kids flabbergasted. While human-made attractions are engrossing, the natural beauty of Connecticut is really where our great state captivates the soul. From the summertime festivities of the great mountain resorts to the recreational lakes all maintained by the state, our New England gem provides outdoor adventures unlike any other. If you don’t believe us, you haven’t been to Litchfield County. The picturesque landscape will make you feel like you’ve been transported into a greeting card. “WHILE OUR STATE HAS AN INCREDIBLE SELECTION OF ACTIVITIES, IT’S THE PEOPLE WHO MAKE CONNECTICUT GREAT.”

Let’s not forget the nautical and historical Mystic shoreline area — Mystic Village, Mystic Seaport, and the Mystic Aquarium. While you’re out that way, how about stopping for a delicious shore dinner along the water? Also, don’t forget the U.S. Naval submarine base in Groton, the “Submarine Capital of the World!” Between the Submarine Force Library and Museum and the tours on the USS Nautilus, there’s wonderful intrigue and history for all ages. We also have two of the finest casino locations in eastern Connecticut with plenty of entertainment and shopping for all. With our beautiful city of Hartford smack-dab in the middle of New York and Boston, you’d think we’d have middle-child syndrome. But for those of you who are natives, you know that the unique attractions and accessibility make this place a hidden treasure. We can’t picture living anywhere else. While our state has an incredible selection of activities, it’s the people who make Connecticut great. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a harder-working or more genuine group of individuals. From blue-collar farm hands to Yale graduates who just couldn’t leave, it is the people in this community who create a place worth living in. Whether it’s at one of these spots or your secret hideaway, when you head out for your summertime adventures, try reflecting on what makes this place great to you. You’ll feel more than contentment; you’ll feel pride. –Paul Levin and Kelly Kasheta

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Every summer, parents across the country have to deal with the same delicate problem. They want to make sure their kids continue to learn without feeling like they’re being assigned tasks. After all, summer homework is every child’s worst nightmare. Luckily, you don’t have to rely on math problems and book reports to keep your child’s development from taking a two-month vacation. Here are a few mentally stimulating activities that are as educational as they are fun. For Little Ones: Homemade Bubbles Bubbles fascinate young children, so why not spend a day making your own solution and experimenting with different types of bubbles? The formula is simple: 1 part dish soap (Dawn or Joy work best) to 10 parts water. Optionally, you can also include 1/4 part glycerin. The process of making the solution will teach ratios, and finding creative ways to blow bubbles fosters problem-solving skills and creative thinking. For Teenagers: Family Dinner Party Cooking teaches so many important skills: math, science, nutrition, concentration, cultural understanding, following directions, Practicing law is nothing like how it plays out in a Hollywood production, but that’s a story for a different time. The truth is that even though everything is perfectly staged, the plot is well-written, and the bad guys always lose, some TV and movie lawyers do possess traits and talents a real attorney can respect. Here are three fictional lawyers we’d want representing us. Elle Woods A little dog named Bruiser, a timid disposition, and a whole lot of pink sure don’t deter us from wanting Elle Woods on our legal team. Practicing law requires a tireless work ethic and the backbone to stand up for what’s right. But beyond that, practicing law demands the highest standard of preparation, and no one prepares like Elle Woods. To drive it home, she might be a slow starter when it comes to delivering an argument, but few are better at finishing it. Lt. Daniel Kaffee In some cases, the law gets dirty. You’ll have your character attacked and dragged through the mud. The law requires resolve and passion. “A Few Good Men” is an all-time classic because it displays Lt. Kaffee’s MENTALLY STIMULATING ACTIVITIES FOR SUMMER Learning That Doesn’t Feel Like School

creativity, time management, and more. Even better, it doesn’t feel like learning; it feels like fun. Encourage your older children to take the reins for preparing regular meals throughout the summer. You can pick guiding themes, like “a trip to Mexico” or “pasta party,” but let them choose the recipes and prep the meals on their own. For the Entire Family: An Educational Field Trip Field trips always inspire excitement in students, and you’ll find the same goes for your family members. You can tailor your destination to the interests of your kids for maximum engagement. If you have a family of art lovers, head to a museum for some inspiration and discussion. Kids who prefer the outdoors will enjoy a nature walk or hike. You can bring along a field guide to identify flora and fauna. These trips may not pack the thrill of a water park, but they’re fun in an entirely different way.

AND THE QUALITIES THAT MAKE THEM GREAT 3 Hollywood Lawyers We’d Want Representing Us

emotional journey throughout his case. The highs, the lows, and the bitter arguments are consistent occurrences over the course of a trial. Sometimes it means taking it on the chin. Other times, it means fighting back. Lt. Kaffee can do both. Harvey Specter Cases often settle out of court. The reasons will always vary, but when that settlement drops, a lawyer is paid to do one thing: win. Harvey Specter is a winner. Regardless of the circumstances, this “Suits” attorney always finds a way to pull one out for his client. His knowledge of law may not compare with the other two attorneys on this list, but his charisma and bravado make him an undeniable force to be reckoned with. Being an effective attorney often revolves around working with the general public. Sometimes a case hinges more on a person than it does on the facts. When that’s the case, we want Harvey. These three fictional lawyers have qualities our team proudly brings to the table every time we step into a conference room or courtroom. Knowledge, passion, and charisma are just a few characteristics every great lawyer possesses. Give us a call and let us show you!

Attorneys Paul Levin & Kelly Kasheta

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WHERE DO HOMEOWNERS GO FROM HERE? Behind the Scenes of Connecticut’s Crumbling Foundation Crisis

Lack of Oversight A Department of Consumer Protection study determined that Becker’s Quarry, the primary source of concrete at the time, has a significant amount of pyrrhotite. While the rock has proven to be an issue, JJ Mottes, the company that extracted the aggregate, maintains that all materials met regulation standards for use. They point the finger at multiple unregulated building contractors who are no longer in existence. Left Holding the Bag While everyone tries to blame each other, residents of Connecticut are left without a solution. Insurance companies are denying claims, the statute of limitations has run out, the state can’t cover all the funding, and the federal government has declined an attempt to bring disaster relief from FEMA. With projected costs of $150,000–$250,000 to repair a single affected home, many homeowners are left with no choice but to abandon ship. There is one glimmer of potential hope. In early May, the Connecticut Legislature passed a relief plan aimed at assisting families facing this disaster. An added $12 annual surcharge to the 900,000 homeowner insurance policies would create a $9.3 million fund aimed at relief for those who suffer this horror. That’s one potential step torward solving a billion-dollar catastrophe.

The people of Connecticut are being hung out to dry. Imagine watching helplessly as your home, the most prized possession you’ll ever invest in, collapses before your eyes, and you’re not able to do anything about it. For thousands of homeowners, this nightmare is a reality. We are in the middle of a crisis. Homes built in the late ‘80s aren’t just experiencing cracks in their foundations. Their concrete base is giving way to the earth and taking the American dream with it. The wake of disaster this epidemic has caused goes beyond just the loss of physical property; it extends into the financial future of each family affected. Rep. Kelly Juleson-Scopino is one of the many local politicians who is pushing for intervention on the matter, but it’s not just because of her calling to the community. She bought her dream house in 2012 for $300,000. It’s now worth only $86,000. Pyrrhotite When concrete is quarried from a work site, it is supposed to be tested for impurities. The most common foundation killer for our region is pyrrhotite. When this mineral is exposed to oxygen and water, it will eventually swell and crack.




Buffalo Dogs and Celery Slaw

Happy birthday to Jack! Jack just turned 6 in June. Jack and Kelly are a certified therapy dog and handler teamwith Healers With HalosTherapy Dogs. Jack is a rescue collie adopted fromCollie Rescue of the Carolinas. He is certified by the Reading Education Assistance Dogs (R.E.A.D.) program and attained his CGC title from the American Kennel Club. Jack works many venues, bringing comfort and happiness to the young and old.


• 1 package of your favorite hot dogs • 1 package hot dog buns • 1 bottle Frank’s RedHot sauce • 4 ounces crumbled blue cheese

• 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest • 2 teaspoons • 1 teaspoon olive oil • Celery salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste fresh lemon juice

For Celery Slaw: • 4 celery stalks,

very thinly sliced


1. For slaw, toss all ingredients together and season with celery salt and pepper. 2. Grill hot dogs and toast buns. 3. Assemble hot dogs, douse with hot sauce, and top with celery slaw. 4. Top with blue cheese, add another splash of hot sauce if you’re feeling extra spicy, and serve.


Inspired by Bon Appetit magazine

Attorneys Paul Levin & Kelly Kasheta

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40 Russ Street | Hartford, CT 06106 (860) 560-7226 Inside THIS ISSUE • Connecticut’s Natural Summer Beauty • Summer-Worthy Learning Opportunities • 3 Great Hollywood Lawyers • Are You the Victim of a Faulty Foundation? • Blue Cheese Buffalo Dogs and Celery Slaw • Must-See Swimming Holes of theWorld


ANewsletter for Clients and Friends FromAttorneys Paul Levin and Kelly Kasheta

EXCLUSIVE SPOTS YOU MUST SEE TO BELIEVE Secret Swimming Holes of the World

Summertime is for swimming, but why settle for a community pool when you can have access to the most beautiful swimming locales in the world? These three exclusive, little-known spots are sure to take your breath away. Hali’i Falls, Hawaii With its spiral staircase of waterfalls, this remote jungle location offers up more than one unique spot to take a plunge. Visitors never fail to be awestruck by the deep blue-green hue of each pool created by the four cascading waterfalls. Hali’i means “to spread out,” which is precisely what each waterfall does, showcasing a serene experience unlike any other. But the beauty of this one-of-a-kind experience is only outdone by its exclusivity. To reach these pools, you’ll have to hike through dense forest, deep marshes, and wide-open pastures of sugar cane. Dos Ojos, Mexico The Spanish translation of the name for this magical system of caves is “two eyes,” and you’ll want to have yours checked after you see

this swimming hole. When limestone bedrock collapses, a sinkhole called a “cenote” is formed. The unearthed water from the natural aquifer balances a color palette of earth tones with the most majestic shades of blue you’ll ever behold. The calling cards for these bodies of water are the Blue Eye and the Black Eye. Both offer unforgettable experiences, but the price of entry is a hefty sense of adventure. You’ll need a full set of scuba gear to get to either hole. The Baths, Virgin Gorda A day in the Caribbean is like living every moment inside a beautiful pastel painting. The elegance of this location in the British Virgin Islands will make you feel like you’ve been transported into a cathedral. The large boulders and natural rock formations create shallow caves that will captivate your eyes as you wade through the water in wonder. When you exit, you’ll witness the sight that gives this beautiful spot its name. A handful of 40-foot granite boulders form private pools as if that was what they were made for.

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