The NFL Concussion Amended Settlement Agreement: What You Need to Know
Concussions are a serious issue in football, with players at all levels of the game at risk for brain injuries. In 2013, the NFL settled a lawsuit brought by former players who claimed that the league had not done enough to protect them from the long-term effects of repeated head injuries. The original settlement was amended in 2019, and it`s important for football fans and players alike to understand the changes.
The original settlement provided for awards to be paid to former players who had been diagnosed with certain types of neurological conditions, including dementia, Alzheimer`s disease, and Parkinson`s disease. The settlement was intended to provide compensation to former players who had suffered these conditions as a result of their time playing in the NFL. The amendment expanded the list of covered conditions, adding chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a condition that has been linked to repeated head traumas.
In addition to expanding the list of covered conditions, the amended settlement also removed a cap on the total amount of awards that could be paid out. The original settlement had set a cap at $765 million, but this was later deemed inadequate by a federal judge. The amended settlement removed the cap entirely, allowing for an unlimited amount of funds to be paid out to eligible players.
Another major change in the amended settlement was the addition of new measures to address the issue of player safety. The NFL agreed to implement a number of new policies, including changes to the rules governing in-game collisions and a $10 million fund to support research into concussion prevention and treatment.
While the amended settlement has been hailed by some as a step forward for player safety, others have criticized its limitations. For example, the settlement only provides compensation to former players who were diagnosed with qualifying conditions before July 7, 2014. Some have argued that this cutoff date is unfair, as it excludes players who were diagnosed with conditions after that date.
In conclusion, the NFL Concussion Amended Settlement Agreement is an important development in the ongoing conversation about player safety in football. While it represents a significant step forward in addressing the issue of head injuries, it`s important to recognize its limitations and continue to advocate for policies and practices that prioritize player health and safety at all levels of the game.