Mottley Law Firm January 2020


THE MOTTLEY CREW REVIEW | (804) 823-2011


One of my favorite times of the year is early January. I think it’s because I’m an optimist and a planner, and early January is when optimists and planners kick into high gear. I’d like to talk about the year ahead. But first, I want to look back at 2019. It was a huge year for us here at The Mottley Law Firm. We celebrated the anniversary of our 10th year in business. One of our plans was to have a 10-year anniversary party. That didn’t happen because we were so busy! So, maybe this year, we’ll do an 11-year anniversary party. Stay tuned. About five years ago, I set out to develop a personal injury practice focusing on representing survivors of traumatic brain injury (TBI), as well as other catastrophic injuries. Some people said that was a bad idea because that is “too narrow” of a practice and “every personal injury lawyer calls themselves a brain injury lawyer.” I am glad I ignored those people. We ended 2019 by achieving a $6.5 million settlement for a client who suffered a mild TBI and spinal cord injury. As of the writing of this article, the result we achieved for this client is tied as the 4th largest verdict or settlement achieved by a lawyer in a Virginia court case in 2019, according to Virginia Lawyers Weekly. This is in addition to numerous other TBI cases we’ve successfully handled over the last several years and the ones set for trial in 2020 and 2021. You can read all about this practice area and our results on the firm’s website, In addition to our catastrophic injury and TBI practice, our work representing individuals involved in family estate disputes

goal setting, see the article on goal setting on the inside of this newsletter.)

continues to grow and prosper. We also continue to represent businesspeople and businesses involved in more traditional business disputes, like breach of contract cases, shareholder disputes, and fiduciary- type litigation. Finally, Ben Kyber has been focused on building an appellate law practice, and has been busy maintaining @ScovaScoop, Ben’s Twitter account dedicated to reporting upon the Supreme Court of Virginia. If you are a lawyer looking to refer one of these sorts of cases to a firm that will make you look good to your client, please consider us. We would love to include you on our growing list of Referral Partners, and our Referral Partners had a very good 2019! So, what’s in store for 2020, and how am I approaching the new year? What I say is from the perspective of the owner of a law firm, but I think it applies to everyone and every business. Figure out what you want in the end. Have a plan to get there. Set ambitious goals. Put deadlines on those goals. Then start working your plan, day after day. Take small daily actions to move you toward knocking out those goals. When you fail (you will fail), get back up and keep moving forward. (On this topic of

For us here at the firm, we’ve been going through the goal-setting process and will continue to do so in January. In my experience, January is a better time to focus on these things than December because too much is already on our plate, both personally and professionally, in December. Although we had a great 2019, my goals for 2020 and beyond are much bigger. When I read them, I must admit that I ask myself, “can we really accomplish that?” In my mind, that’s how you know you’ve set goals that are big enough. Right now, I’m going through the process of setting deadlines associated with those goals and blocking off time on my calendar to take the micro- actions to achieve those goals. And this applies to my personal life as well. I look forward to sharing with you my story as we move through 2020 and beyond, and I wish you and your family a happy, healthy, and prosperous new year.

-Kevin W. Mottley | 1

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This is the time of year when a lot of us are setting goals for ourselves and our businesses. With that in mind, I offer my top five tips for setting goals. As with other topics I talk about, I disclaim any notion that I’m the expert. I unapologetically admit that I’ve stolen everything said here from someone else. With that disclaimer, here are my top five tips for setting goals in 2020. 1. Figure out what you want. We stumbled across the movie “Bruce Almighty” over the holidays. I had seen it before, and you’ve probably seen it. Bruce, played by Jim Carrey, is given the chance to be God by none other than God himself, played by Morgan Freeman. One of Bruce’s biggest challenges is dealing with the billions of prayer requests God fields every day. After Bruce makes the mistake of granting everyone’s prayers, havoc results. When he explains himself to God, Bruce says, “There were so many. I just gave them all what they want.” In response, God wisely asks, “Yeah, but since when does anyone have a clue about what they want?” Wow, that is so true. Honestly, asking and answering the “what do I want” question takes strength and courage because the answer is likely out of sync with your habits, not to mention what other people expect from you. If you change, it’s going to create pain. But here are the dirty little secrets about this. The pain is more imagined than real. And if you force yourself to answer this question honestly, you immediately start to strip away all the garbage that has stopped you from being your best version of you. You lay your finger on the dreams, passions, and talents that will take you there. Before you set out to create goals, I encourage you to first think long and hard about what you really want in every aspect of your life. 2. Be specific. This is a big one. “I want to lose weight” is not specific. “I want to lose 20 pounds” is specific. “I want my business to be profitable” isn’t specific. “I want my business to net $1 million this year” is specific. To achieve a goal, you need to make it specific and measurable. That enables you to measure your progress, which is another crucial step in accomplishing anything. 3. Set a deadline. Another great tool is to set deadlines for achieving your goals. This creates a sense of urgency and pushes you to act. It keeps you accountable. Will you possibly miss the deadline or not be where you want to be when it arrives? Of course. But if you’ve been working your plan, I guarantee you’ll be in a lot better shape by that date than if you set no deadline. Then you can recalibrate and set a new deadline or maybe even a new goal. 4. Expect failure, and take advantage of it. Another good quote from “Bruce Almighty” is when God observes that, “no matter how filthy something gets, you can always clean it right up.” You’re going to fail. That’s part of the process. But as you’ve often heard, great things come from failure. You learn what doesn’t work. You make some tweaks, and you attack it again. But you do not quit. 5. Revisit the goals, and be flexible. I think a lot of people believe that setting goals is something that happens in December or January. My personal philosophy is that it’s an ongoing process that is reactive to what happens to me. Sometimes, something terrific happens, and I think, “Man, I never could have planned it that way.” This in turn causes me to adjust my aim at different goals based on my unexpected experience. The same holds true with failures. Have your goals written somewhere, and revisit them periodically during the year to measure them against your experience and what’s really happened. 5 T I PS FOR SETT ING GOALS IN 2020



Whether you want to generate some extra income during your retirement or just keep yourself busy, getting a part- time job can be a great way to spend your golden years. But why settle for just any opportunity when you could stay mentally and physically active and give back to the community? If that sounds like your ideal way to spend retirement, here are a few options to consider. PASS ALONG YOUR KNOWLEDGE AS A TEACHER. Many community colleges and community centers offer part-time teaching opportunities for those who want to share their field of expertise with others. Many of these positions don’t require a teaching degree or certificate — just a wealth of knowledge from your years in the workforce. Alternatively, if you want to help younger students with their academics, you could also work as a tutor or a teacher’s assistant at a local school. SHARE YOUR PASSION FOR SPORTS AS A COACH. Coaching can be a satisfying way to spend your retirement and support younger athletes. However, there are a few things to keep in mind if you want to be a coach. You might need to pass a background check, and you’ll probably need to know first aid as well. While the pay isn’t incredible, the time you’ll spend sharing your passion for sports with young people is more than worth it. GIVE BACK AS A PERSONAL CARE AIDE. If you’re looking for an opportunity to stay active and have a more direct impact on people’s lives, you can try being a personal care aide. Personal care aides help elderly and disabled people with everyday tasks, such as shopping, doing laundry, and bathing. Many people who require this assistance prefer older aides who can empathize with their struggles, so it’s a great job for recent retirees. Just because you’ve retired doesn’t mean you can no longer bring value to your community. With all the time you have on your hands, you could become one of your town’s most valuable assets.

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from Broad Street to Leigh Street in the heart of Richmond, this event is host to an assortment of performances with local artists and microbreweries all showcasing their craft! NASCAR GANDER OUTDOORS TRUCK SERIES RACE On April 18 at Richmond International Raceway, give the gear head in your family the experience of a lifetime. The event will see some of NASCAR’s brightest up and coming drivers duke it out with series legends in the famed oval. Advanced reserved grandstand tickets cost $35, and advanced general admission tickets cost $25. Have children? Tickets for kids ages 12 and younger are FREE in all grandstand sections. So, what are some of the significant events you’re most looking forward to in 2020? Let me know next time you’re in the office! I’m always looking for something fun to do with the kids.

movies and TV shows, including “Clerks,” “Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Aladdin,” and many more. Have a family member who wants to show off their cosplay skills? They have several cosplay contests for any experience level and even panels detailing how to bring beloved characters to life. SHAMROCK THE BLOCK On Saturday, March 14 from 12–6 p.m., join the entire community for the kickoff to Richmond’s outdoor festival season! Spanning down Arthur Ashe Boulevard

As we head into the new year, many people are on edge. With some crucial events coming up in 2020, it’s easy to get distracted and lose sight of what’s most important. Unwind with these fun events to help take your mind off the stress and make the most of the new year with your family. GALAXYCON 2020 From Feb. 28 to March 1, join the rest of the fan community at the Richmond Convention Center! During this event, you will be able to meet actors from some of your favorite



A traditional New Year’s favorite in the South, Hoppin’ John includes black-eyed peas that are said to represent coins, a sign of prosperity for the coming year. It’s usually served alongside collard greens, which represent cash.



1 cup dried black- eyed peas 5–6 cups water 1 dried hot pepper, optional (arbol and Calabrian are great options) 1 smoked ham hock 1 medium onion, diced

1. Wash and sort peas. 2. In a saucepan, cover peas with water, discarding any that float. 3. Add pepper, ham hock, and onion. Gently boil and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, until peas are just tender, about 90 minutes. At this point, you should have about 2 cups of liquid remaining. 4. Add rice, cover, drop heat to low, and simmer for 20 minutes, undisturbed. 5. Remove from heat and let steam for an additional 10 minutes, still covered. 6. Remove lid, fluff with a fork, and serve.

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1 cup long-grain white rice | 3

Inspired by Epicurious


1700 Bayberry Court, Suite 203 Richmond, Virginia 23226

INS IDE THI S I SSUE | (804) 823-2011

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2020, Here We Come!

Stay Active During Your Golden Years

5 Tips for Setting Goals in 2020


2020 Local Events

Hoppin’ John


Enter 2020 With an Organized Computer



be sure they are completely dry before placing them back into your computer.

Everyone relies on technology. Computers, laptops, tablets, and phones are staples of modern life. However, it’s easy for these devices to become cluttered with old photos, files, and general disorganization. Luckily, January is National Clean Up Your Computer Month and an excellent time to get your technology in order. START BY DUSTING Over time, computer towers can become clogged with dust, which creates additional, unwanted heat within your computer. Regular cleanings will increase the lifespan of your computer and protect its essential components. Compressed air is great for removing most of the dust and other particulates. If the fans or filters are too dirty, you can remove them from the tower to clean them better. If you use water or liquid cleaning products on them,

ORGANIZE YOUR FILES Naming and arranging the files on your computer in such a way that they’re easy for you to find can end up saving you a lot of time. Declutter your workspace by creating one file for pictures, one for Word documents, one for spreadsheets, and one for programs to eliminate the hassle of frantically searching for the files you need. BACK UP YOUR COMPUTER Be sure to back up your computer before you start deleting things. This acts as a safety net in case you delete something you didn’t mean to. Additionally, consider installing a second hard drive. The extra space can help

with storing important files without having to worry about how much room is left. CLEAN UP SPACE Any files you’ll never use again should be deleted. Likewise, any programs you haven’t used in a while should be uninstalled. Check your hard drive for files that might be taking up unintended space on your computer. And remember to empty the recycling bin — it’s easy to forget just how much goes in there.

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