Tag Archive: NFL

NFL Concussion Settlement Baseline Assessment Program

FAQs and Analysis… December 28, 2017 Sheilla Dingus In the first installment of this series I looked a NFL Concussion Settlement FAQs 1 – 23 which deal with general provisions and personnel of the Settlement.  More importantly perhaps, I question the ability of and ethical implications of requiring a brain-damaged class to navigate, at minimum, …

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The Facts About NFL Concussion Settlement FAQs

On December 1, a proposed document of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) was posted via Electronic Court Filing (ECF) to the NFL Concussion Settlement docket.  The purpose of the FAQ document is to aid the neurologically impaired football players who are class members to the settlement in understanding its terms and filing their claims.  During the enrollment period for the settlement, when retired NFL players had to make a choice between enrollment in the settlement, opting out, or ignoring it all together, in order to encourage enrollment Co-Lead Class Counsel Christopher Seeger, along with Claims Administrator Brown Greer portrayed the enrollment and claims processes as “simple.”  They encouraged retirees to not hire independent counsel for this reason.  They were told if they had a qualifying diagnosis their claims would be approved, and a 30-60 day window was referenced as an estimated approval time.  As a result, approximately 20,000 retired players or their representatives registered for the program, including many who had previously objected or opted out.

NFL Concussion Settlement Opt-Out Plaintiffs Take on Chiefs & Cardinals

In Part 1 of this series I detailed how §301 of the Labor Management Relations Act is the NFL’s number one go-to defense.  This provision brings cases filed in various state courts against the league into federal jurisdiction when reliance on CBA interpretation is necessary.  Often when the NFL successfully invokes this provision, especially in lawsuits involving retired players, there is no legal standing for the lawsuit under the CBA and the case is dismissed typically without extensive exploration the merits and allegations of illegal or unethical conduct.

Dec 23

The Blitz 12/23/17

Essential Sports & Sports Law News Week in Review 📖Read of the Week: In a new op-ed in @statnews, I write that my research with @prof_goldberg “found that the NFL’s private agenda isn’t compatible with public health objectives.” https://t.co/y4HdvnP9YN — Kathleen Bachynski (@bachyns) December 21, 2017 ⚖️Litigation Lane: NFL Concussion Settlement: My analysis of Harvard …

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NFL Concussion Settlement Claims Report:

In keeping with Judge Anita Brody’s announcement following a closed hearing with Chris Seeger, NFL Counsel, and Special Masters, a claims report dated December 11, 2017 has been posted to the settlement website.  The seven-page PDF document  which details the current status of claims highlights numerous issues in the settlement, not the least of which is a mere 10% approval of submitted claims.

Harvard Law Professor Advises Concussion Settlement Court to Cap Attorney Fees

In September, Harvard Law Professor William B. Rubenstein was appointed by Judge Anita Brody to weigh in on controversies surrounding attorney fees, including a 5% hold back that Co-Lead Class Counsel Christopher Seeger requisitioned as payment for future work in settlement implementation.
In a well-reasoned 47-page report, Professor Rubenstein recommended against withholding the additional 5% from Class Members monetary awards and advised a 15% cap on contingency feels from independently retained counsel.  Judge Brody has given a January 3 deadline for responses to the expert opinion.
Withholding 5% of every award is unreasonable
Prior to Professor Rubenstein’s report, every other attorney who publicly expressed an opinion on the subject, as well as members of the class of retired NFL players expressed opposition to the proposed 5% holdback.  Professor Rubenstein agreed.  As the professor noted, Seeger felt that the $112.5 million common benefit (of which Seeger claims over $70 million) should go to pay for securing of the settlement and the 5% for implementation of it, but as Rubenstein said, “Class Counsel bear the burden of proving the need for a 5% set-aside, but their artificial bifurcation of settlement and implementation – and hence the justification for the 5% set-aside – fails to meet that burden for at least six reasons.”

Dec 17

The Blitz 12/17/17

Essential Sports & Sports Law News December 17, 2017 Week in Review 📖Read of the Week: Ex-NFL player Larry Johnson grapples with violent urges and memory loss. He thinks it’s CTE. https://t.co/HNxDXg5TEk — Washington Post (@washingtonpost) December 13, 2017 If you need a link that isn’t behind the paywall, CLICK HERE I truly and honestly …

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The story of Bill Cesare demonstrates how little the NFL and NFLPA do to take care of former players

December 10, 2017 Derek Helling Many former NFL players are challenged to deal with the physical toll of playing football along with all the other struggles that life can present. The story of former NFL defensive back Bill Cesare is one such narrative. As a result of brain trauma suffered while playing football, Cesare’s relationships …

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Dec 10

The Blitz 12/10/17

Essential Sports & Sports Law News Week in Review 12/10/17 📖Read of the Week: Compelling read: Forget About Colin Kaepernick; I Think I’m Done With the NFL Just Because I Don’t Want to Watch Someone Die https://t.co/vw8Sg50Fk7 via @verysmartbros — Sheilla Dingus (@SheillaDingus) December 9, 2017 ⚖️Litigation Lane: NFL Concussion Settlement There was a lot …

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The NFL’s Preemption Trap and How Concussion Settlement Opt-Outs Plan to Avoid It

December 9, 2017 Sheilla Dingus As concussion settlement class members struggle to overcome delays and denials in the much heralded and massively disappointing NFL Concussion Settlement, opt-out claims are quietly moving forward. By 2012 hundreds of brain injury cases were filed against the NFL, and in some instances helmet maker Riddell, and these, and many …

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