Simon Law - April 2020

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april 2020

Good News From Congress in Tough Times

The U.S. Congress has passed a $2 trillion relief package for workers and businesses affected by the coronavirus. Here are four things to know about how this bill will impact you:

you won't get a check, so get the 2018 return in at least! This payment is written up as a refundable tax credit for 2020, so, yes, you eventually will pay taxes on it if you pay taxes at all. 2. If you get laid off Unemployment benefits in Georgia used to work like this: Your weekly benefit amount was calculated by combining your wages from the two highest quarters in your base period and that number was divided by 42. Your weekly benefit amount is subject to a weekly minimum of $44 and a maximum of $330. The coronavirus bill adds up to $600 a week to the state’s payment to bring workers’ payments up to what they were making. This new formulation will last for four months.

1. Qualifying for the Individual Check This will be based off of your 2018 or 2019 tax return. If you earned less than $75,000 as a single person in adjusted gross income (AGI), you get $1,200 by check. As a couple it's $150,000. You’ll also get $500 for each child you claim. If your AGI was between $75,000 and $99,000, your payment will be phased down, and then it disappears for those with incomes above that. Decide now which return would be better for you, and if you did not file one at all,

3. Student Loan payments suspended until October Interest rates will be lowered to 0% for two months, and borrowers can get a two- month deferral. The government has also stopped collection efforts for student loan borrowers in default. 4. Self-Employed and Small-Business Owners In addition to cheap and easy Small Business Administration loans to get us through, congress passed a deferral of the 6.2% payroll tax employers pay for the next two tax years. This is all about flattening the economic dip.

–Christopher Simon

WEAREOPENFORVIDEOCONSULTATION!

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Finding Motivation on Those Tough Days TopMentalStrategiesforYourFitnessRoutine

Whether your New Year’s workout routine is finally embedded in your schedule or you’re still trying to make it happen, always remember that your mind is just as important as your body. On some days, you may feel like anything is possible, and on others, it may feel impossible to even get out of bed. Don’t worry, that’s totally normal! There’s no reason to feel ashamed if you’re struggling with gaining steam and motivation for your workout. Here are some mental strategies to help you get firmly into your routine this year and the years to come. Starting Your Workout What’s the hardest part of working out? For most people, it’s not the heavy weights or the long cardio sessions — it’s actually beginning. Sometimes, people will wake up and think that the gym or an at-home workout isn’t possible that day as they lay in bed. Some people will psych themselves out of working out because

their time is limited, or they worry about how tired they’ll be after the workout (especially after or before a busy day). Instead of thinking of reasons you can’t or don’t want to go, focus your mind only on the task of starting. Stepping into your workout space will often give you the mental push to actually work out. It’s also best to leave the all-or-nothing mindset behind — a 45- or 55-minute workout isn’t required every single session. Life happens, and even if it’s a short exercise, your workout will actually energize you for the rest of your day. Pushing Yourself to the Limit Studies have found that the most successful people share grit: the ability to work hard and endure even the most difficult times. Workouts will burn, and the motions may feel uncomfortable or even painful, so it’s crucial

to have the grit to push yourself to the limit. Rather than give up, you should embrace the pain and see it as a sign you’re growing stronger. Adjust your inner vocabulary. Anything that seems “uncomfortable” should be reconsidered as “intense” but something you can work through. Of course, be careful of injury pains!

Do Your Part to Keep America Beautiful ANDMAINTAIN GREEN LIVING SPACES FOR EVERYONE

Have you ever walked through a park and seen a plastic bottle or wrapper lying on the ground? If so, did you pick it up and properly dispose of it? You might not have realized it, but in that moment, you took a small step toward keeping your community — and, by extension, America — beautiful! April is Keep America Beautiful Month, and folks who celebrate aim to help each community in every state stay clean and green. Created by the nonprofit organization Keep America Beautiful, this holiday offers a perfect opportunity to roll up your sleeves and work to better the place you live in. Here are three ways to show your appreciation for a green America this month. Take Action Online. With the current COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the world, it might be difficult to get outside and participate in a community cleanup program. But that doesn’t mean the public can’t participate in Keep America Beautiful Month. April 22 marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, and to

celebrate, Earth Day Network is providing digital events for everyone around the world to take part in. Follow Earth Day Network’s social media accounts and stay updated on efforts to keep the Earth green or participate in an event yourself! For more information, visit EarthDay.org. Start plogging. If you’re passionate about staying active and cleaning up your neighborhood, then this is the perfect activity for you! Plogging combines jogging and picking up litter, which takes care

of your health and keeps your community clean. Anybody can do it: Just throw on your running shoes, grab a bag, head out the door, and pick up any stray bits of trash you see on your morning jog or evening walk. Improve recycling through education. An important goal during Keep America Beautiful Month is to spread awareness about recycling. There are various ways to educate those around you about recycling and encourage them to do their part. At work, for example, you can volunteer to lead a recycling initiative by printing off guides and fostering discussions on why recycling is so essential. At home, you can make a commitment with your family to fulfill the three R’s of recycling: reduce, reuse, recycle. To discover more ways to participate in Keep America Beautiful month, visit their website at KAB.org today!

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WORD SEARCH

WHY ROB BILOTT TOOK ON DUPONT Something in the Water

Rob Bilott never should have agreed to represent Wilbur Tennant’s case.

The cattle farmer had presented evidence of the strange malady plaguing his cattle to lawyers, politicians, and veterinarians in Parkersburg, West Virginia, but no one took Tennant’s case seriously.

But when Bilott saw the evidence for himself, it was clear that something was wrong.

The videos and photographs Tennant had collected showed cattle with patchy fur, growths and lesions, white slime coming from their mouths, and staggering gaits. Tennant told Bilott that the abnormal behavior and physical deformities had started after his brother Jim sold his property to DuPont, a chemical company with a big presence in Parkersburg. Jim’s property bordered on Wilbur’s, and a stream running from Jim’s property provided water for all the cattle and wildlife in the area. Since the sale, the stream had become frothy and discolored, and the animals that drank from it were sick, malformed, or dead, including 153 of Tennant’s 200 cows. When Bilott stumbled upon a letter fromDuPont to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the real horror story began to emerge — one that went far beyond the boundaries of Tennant’s farm and into the drinking water of every American. The letter mentioned a mysterious chemical called PFOA, and Bilott requested documentation fromDuPont to find out more about it. However, the company refused, so Bilott requested a court order. Soon, dozens of disorganized boxes filled with thousands of 50-year-old files arrived at Bilott’s firm. He was worried he wouldn’t be able to find anything incriminating or even conclusive in the mess of documents, but soon, his time as an environmental lawyer helped him see the bigger picture. It became clear that DuPont had orchestrated a massive cover-up regarding their use of PFOA. PFOA is used in the manufacturing of Teflon, and the company had knowingly exposed workers and the Parkersburg water supply to it.

BUNNY DAISY EARTH EASTER

EGGS FOOL GARDEN PASSOVER

POLLEN PRANK RAMADAN TAXES

Easy Deviled Eggs

While the kids hunt for Easter eggs in the yard, whip up this easy deviled egg recipe for a hearty snack that’s sure to satisfy any craving.

INGREDIENTS

• • • • • •

1/2 cup mayonnaise

Salt, paprika, garlic powder, and pepper, to taste 12 large eggs, hard-boiled Fresh parsley, minced, and paprika for garnish

2 tbsp milk

1 tsp dried parsley flakes

• •

1/2 tsp dill weed

1/2 tsp fresh chives, minced 1/2 tsp ground mustard

Bilott filed a class-action suit as a medical monitoring claim on behalf of the people of Parkersburg, and, as of 2011, a probable link between PFOA and six health conditions, including two types of cancer, has been found. Because of the medical monitoring claim, plaintiffs can file personal injury lawsuits against DuPont. So far, 3,535 people have. If it weren’t for Bilott and Tennant, the public might have never known the dangers of PFOA.

DIRECTIONS 1.

In a large bowl, combine mayonnaise, milk, parsley flakes, dill, chives, mustard, salt, paprika, garlic powder, and pepper. Mix well and set aside. 2. Cut eggs lengthwise and remove yolks carefully to preserve egg whites. 3. In a small bowl, mash yolks. 4. Mix mashed yolks with mayonnaise mixture. 5. Spoon or pipe the mixture back into the egg whites. 6. Garnish with fresh parsley and paprika. Refrigerate before serving.

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Good News From Congress in Tough Times 1 Top Mental Strategies for Your Fitness Routine Keep America Beautiful 2 The Lawyer Who Took on a Multibillion- Dollar Company Easy Deviled Eggs 3 The Best Locations for Spring Blooms 4

See Spring Bloom INTHESEBEAUTIFULLOCATIONS

Spring is here, which means beautiful flowers are finally

sloping hills covered with fields of vibrant orange, yellow, and red poppies in the spring. Warm temperatures and heavy rainfall across Southern California during this time of year create a brief period of thick blooms as far as the eye can see. And while the poppies can be enjoyed from the comfort of your car, the best way to experience them is to walk the leisurely Antelope Loop Trail for a breathtaking, up- close adventure. Visit Parks.CA.gov for the latest information on visiting the parks during the COVID-19 pandemic. Spring flora is gorgeous and naturally attracts large crowds of people every year. If you plan to visit any of these destinations, just remember that their ecosystems are delicate. Respect park signs, stay on designated trails, and do your part to make sure these flowers return year after year for future generations to enjoy.

showing themselves after a long winter. Here are some of the best places in the U.S. to see flower blossoms and welcome the season.

Great Smoky Mountains The Great Smoky Mountains National Park stretches across North Carolina and Tennessee, and while its scenery is beautiful year-round, the park is especially alluring to nature enthusiasts during the spring. Through this season, miles of lady’s-slipper orchids, irises, cardinal flowers, and lilies dot its lush green landscape. It’s dubbed “Wildflower National Park” throughout this time of year, and you can experience it by car or on foot. Crested Butte Crested Butte, Colorado, is best known for its winter sports and summer hikes. But

recently it has drawn the attention of flower enthusiasts for its unique pink, orange, and gold alpine wildflowers that appear in the spring. This natural phenomenon even inspired the creation of the annual Wildflower Festival in midsummer, which features nature walks, art, photography, culinary experiences, and more. For a truly unique experience, you can even ascend the town’s titular Crested Butte to spot some rare alpine sunflowers next to the picturesque West Elk Mountains. Antelope Valley The California Poppy Reserve in Lancaster, California, is a 1,780-acre park that features

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