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Stevenson Klotz Monthly Calendar—March of 2016

Read Across America Day, March 2. A nationwide celebration of reading that takes place annually on the birthday of Theodor Seuss Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss.

National Cereal Day, March 7. Fun facts: Of the more than 314 million people in the U.S., 49 percent start their day with a bowl of cereal. Enough boxes of cereal, 2.7 billion, are sold every year to wrap around the earth 13 times.

St. Patrick's Day, March 17. Celebrate a day when everyone in the world is Irish.

World Storytelling Day, March 20. A global celebration of the art of oral storytelling, observed every year on the March equinox.

Easter, March 27. Christian celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Also Inside This Issue:

Recipe of the Month

West Indies Salad

This is the original recipe from Bill Bayley’s Restaurant on Dauphin Island Parkway in Mobile Alabama passed to me (Chris) from my mom who grew up in Mobile.

Ingredients:

  • 1 onion
  • 1 pound lump crabmeat
  • 4 ounces Wesson oil
  • 3 ½ ounces white vinegar
  • 4 ounces ice water
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Finely chop the onion and add all of the above listed ingredients in a bowl and mix together. Marinate for 4-5 hours before serving.

This simple recipe is so deceptively easy, but it winds up tasting amazingly complex. Don’t vary from the recipe; trust Mr. Bill’s elegant simplicity. It is good by itself as an appetizer, or spooned on a cracker or over a bed of lettuce.

What's Up at SKLF?

February was a busy month. Chris and I tried a case in Mobile, Alabama and spent a lot of time working on our Escambia County Jail explosion claims. As part of our Youth Music Project, we had the band Pelican212 perform in front of our office for Gallery Night. If you’ve never seen them, do yourself a favor. We also finished our Santa’s Bookshelf literacy philanthropy in partnership with Grace Klein community in Birmingham, Alabama and were able to send over 100 children’s books to children in Zambia. We recently celebrated our first year anniversary with a celebration at the Old Hickory Whiskey Bar on Palafox Street. It has been a great first year. Thank you to all our family, friends, and clients who have referred us cases. We have been able to help a number of people through difficult times this year and are grateful to all our referral partners!

An Exciting Finish!

Two bass players performing Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony realized that for some time at the end of the piece, the bassists play nothing. They decided to sneak out of the auditorium for a quick drink at the bar in the lobby.

After a few quick shots, one of them checked his watch. “Uh-oh, we have to get back in two minutes.”

“Don’t worry.” His friend ordered another round. “I tied down the last page of the conductor’s score, so they’ll keep playing the same part over and over. No one will notice.”

After a few more drinks, they staggered backstage and made their way back to their chairs as the conductor struggled to untie his music score with one hand while conducting the orchestra.

One usher at the rear of the auditorium whispered, “What’s going on?”

The other usher answered, “Well, it’s pretty exciting. It’s the bottom of the Ninth, the score is tied, and the bassists are loaded!”

Person of the Month: Dee Elliott

Dee Elliott of Anchor Court Reporting

Each month, we like to feature people we work with, our neighbors, or people who are influential in our community. This month, we feature Dee Elliot, owner of Anchor Court Reporting established in 1987.

Time Behind the Wheel

Driving is embedded in our national psyche. If you feel as though you live in your car driving between home and work, consider these statistics from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety and the Urban Institute:

  • Americans drive an average of 29.2 miles a day, for a total of 10,658 miles a year.
  • Women tend to take more drives, but men spend more time on the road, driving 25% more miles than women.
  • Drivers 30-49 years old drive an average of 13,140 miles a year. Teens and senior citizens over 65 drive less than other age groups.
  • We drive more in the summer—30.6 miles a day, as opposed to the winter months, when we’re on the road for just 25.7 miles daily.
  • Education seems to be correlated to how much people drive: Those with no more than a high school education drive an average of 19.9 miles a day (32 minutes), while drivers with a college degree are in their cars for 37.2 miles (58 minutes).

Volkswagen Claim

Volkswagen’s clean diesel cars amazed people when they first came out. Diesels are known for being slow and sluggish with poor fuel economy. Diesel emissions can cause damage to lung tissue in children, the elderly, and asthmatics. They also can form smog and acid rain. But Volkswagen promised superb power, great mileage, and clean emissions. They promised something no car company had promised before: a high performing car with clean emissions.

The promises were too good to be true. Following a lengthy investigation, the Environmental Protection agency found that almost 500,000 Volkswagen and Audi vehicles with the 2.0 liter TDI Clean Diesel engine failed to meet emission requirements. The EPA has also found that certain Volkswagen, Audi, and Porsche light duty diesel vehicles equipped with 3.0 liter engines for model years 2014-2015 also failed. Volkswagen, which manufactures Audi and Porsche, has admitted that these diesel cars were qualified for sale only because of a “defeat device” which cheated the emissions tests. Volkswagen installed defeat devices on several Audi and Volkswagen models sold in the 2009-2015 years.

For years, Volkswagen sold the clean diesel cars as an alternative to traditional gas vehicles and electric and hybrid cars. It claimed that these clean diesel cars had better mileage than gas cars and better performance than hybrids or electrics. As a result, hundreds of thousands of American consumers bought cars that emit unsafe and illegal amounts of dangerous gaseous chemicals. These vehicles will be subject to replacement or updates of the on board computers that monitor and control emissions. Even if successful, the changes will negatively affect the performance and/or fuel economy of the vehicles. The value of the vehicles will decrease. In short, the cars people thought they were buying are not the cars they bought. Indeed, they are worth much less.

The cars affected include:

  • Volkswagen Jetta, Jetta SportWagen (2009-2015)
  • Volkswagen Beetle, Beetle Convertible (2009- 2015)
  • Audi A3 (2009-2015)
  • Volkswagen Golf (2009-2015)
  • Volkswagen Passat (2014-2015)
  • Volkswagen Gulf SportWagen (2015)
  • Volkswagen Touareg (2014)
  • Porsche Cayenne (2015)
  • Audi A6 Quattro (2016)
  • Audi A7 Quattro (2016)
  • Audi A8 (2016)
  • Audi A8L (2016)
  • Audi Q5 (2016)

If you or someone you know owns a car listed above, you may have a claim against Volkswagen for the diminished value of your car. If you would like to talk with us about whether you have a claim, please give us a call.

Chris' Corner

This year did not start out slowly and leisurely. Soccer and Lacrosse games and practices for the kids have been full speed ahead. My Cub Scout co-den has been hopping; building Pinewood Derby race cars and overnight camping on the USS Alabama, a really fun and unique experience. Forest, our adopted chow-shepherd mix dog, is very ready to have his winter coat shaved since it is starting to warm up and he loves to be free from the very long, thick hair that keeps him warm in the winter. In my spare time, I’m trying to get the woodwork on the boat varnished and in shape for the warm weather that’s right around the corner. Work-wise, Eric and I have signed up for several educational programs to help us become better lawyers for our clients. We are looking forward to learning new skills to benefit the people who have trusted us with their cases. Thank you to all of you who have placed your trust in us. We take it very seriously. We look forward to working with you in 2016.

Let the Easter Eggs Roll!

Ever wonder how the tradition of the White House Easter Egg Roll came to be? It began with Dolley Madison, first lady to President James Madison from 1809 to 1817.

Mrs. Madison was fascinated to learn that Egyptian children rolled colored eggs on the site of the great Pyramids. She thought the children of the Washington area would enjoy the activity as well.

The first Easter Egg Rolls were held on the Capitol grounds. In 1877, members of Congress grew tired of slipping on the remains of boiled eggs, and gave orders to ban the event. So in 1878, President Rutherford B. Hayes and his wife, Lucy, officially opened the White House grounds to the tradition.

Lift With Care at Work

Improper lifting is one of the major causes of workplace injury. Even a light load can strain your back if you’re not careful when you lift and carry it. Follow these guidelines for protecting yourself and your co-workers when you’ve got something to move:

  • Warm up. Before lifting anything, warm up your muscles with some stretching. If your job requires a lot of physical activity, try warming up before the start of every shift.
  • Test loads first. Don’t just grab and lift. Try shifting the object a bit to properly assess its weight. If necessary, get a co-worker to assist you, or use a dolly or some other instrument to move the object.
  • Use your legs. “Lift with your legs” is familiar advice. Crouch down and use your legs to lift any load instead of bending over and relying on your back.
  • Don’t reach. Grasping heavy objects above your head poses risks, too. Instead of stretching, get a stool or stepladder to safely move high objects.
  • Get help. Any object weighing more than 30 pounds should be moved by two people, not one. Don’t be afraid to ask for assistance, and be ready to help out your co-workers as needed.

If you or someone you know owns a car listed above, you may have a claim against Volkswagen for the diminished value of your car. If you would like to talk with us about whether you have a claim, please give us a call.

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