Cleveland residents have no doubt heard about the numerous lawsuits filed against the National Football League regarding severe brain injuries as a result of concussions received by players. As of this report, more than 2,000 players have filed suit and the numbers increase almost daily. One of the latest lawsuits includes a wrongful death suit filed by family members of former NFL player Dave Duerson.
A wrongful death claim can result from the death of a person due to the negligence or misconduct of another individual, company or organization. In the case of serious injuries that result from these same negligent or reckless acts, a personal injury claim can be brought for damages, such as medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and possibly punitive damages.
Damages in a wrongful death case can include loss of companionship by surviving family members, lost wages that would have been earned by the deceased, as well as medical expenses incurred prior to the death and any subsequent burial expenses. If your family has suffered a loss through the negligent or reckless acts of another, it is important to seek an experienced personal injury law firm that fully understands the importance of evaluating and documenting every detail of your family’s loss, both economically and emotionally.
In the wrongful death suit filed against the NFL, the suit is claiming the NFL was negligent when it failed to prevent the brain damage that led Mr. Duerson to end his life when he was only 50-years-old. The negligence, according to the suit, was in failing to warn the player of the dangers of concussions.
The suit also alleges the team did not “first do no harm” when it allowed players back into games after suffering injuries that should have kept them out of the game’s action. According to one former player interviewed, who is also among the many filing suit against the NFL, he will not let his sons play football due to the potential for head injuries.
It is not just about the NFL at issue either, concussions are a concern at any level of play, including youth football, high school and college ball. Estimates show that of the 5 million individuals playing football below the college level, half of these players have suffered concussions, with about one third of these players experiencing concussions on more than one occasion. It is important to note that research shows the brain is not fully developed until the around the age of 25 or so.
Source: NPR, “Mind Games: Football And Head Injuries,” Frank Deford, May 9, 2012