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Former Players Sue NFL for Withholding Brain Injury Information

Our Chicago personal injury attorneys were interested to learn more details about the lawsuit in which a group of former National Football League (“NFL”) players claim the NFL actively concealed evidence that repeated football head injuries and concussions could lead to serious cognitive brain damage. According to Business Insider, the lawsuit against the League also names Riddell, Inc. as a defendant, the company that has been the official football helmet brand for over 20 years. At this point both the NFL and Riddell refuse to comment on the pending lawsuit.

Concussions are a common head injury in heavy contact sports, such as football. When a player gets hit in the head during play the hit often leads to a concussion, which is when the hit causes the brain to jar or shake in the head. Because of how frequent concussions are in football, and how quickly the players are often back on the field and susceptible to being hit again, this issue has recently become a major concern in the sport.

The NFL has a brain injury committee that has been around for years and which was set up to research the effects of multiple hits on the players long term brain health. According to CNN, up until June of 2010, the committee claimed that there was no ongoing damage created by the multiple hits and concussions the players received and that the players had no long term damage to be concerned about. Then last year the committee finally released information that repeated concussions could lead to dementia, memory loss and other times of ongoing brain deterioration and damage. While a single concussion is not always something that is a serious concern, multiple concussions have been linked to permanent cognitive brain functioning problems and may impair speech, movement and learning. After this information was released, the NFL started issuing warnings to players and their families (but not to any former players that had suffered years of head injuries).

The player’s main issue against the league was that issuing these warnings were too little too late. The players allege that the league had to have been aware of the serious damage that the head injuries were causing but failed to warn the players of the dangers, and instead encouraged and allowed them to get right back out on the field. The lawsuit states that the football league, as employers of the players, acted negligently in their role when they knew of the risks of traumatic brain injuries associated with repeated concussions, but never warned the players of these serious dangers. The complaint against the NFL claims that with all the doctors around following the hits and witnessing the serious injuries occurring to the players, that the NFL had to know that there was long term danger associated with the sport and that they were engaging in fraud and deceit in keeping this information from the players.

Our Chicago Brain Injury attorneys are here to help both victims of traumatic brain injuries as well as the families of victims of these injuries. When a traumatic brain injury is caused, or worsened by, the negligence of another, the victim has a right to be compensated not only for the medical costs associated with the injury but also for the pain and suffering and other damage that they have suffered as a result. Our Chicago based law firm has helped out victims of brain injuries all over Illinois and are here to help you or your loved one receive the compensation you deserve.