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9-5 9:10am Tommy, NFL concussion lawsuit

Sep 5, 2013|

Tommy talks to Tim Epstein, a sports law attorney, about a new lawsuit against the NFL and Riddell

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

And we're talking about player injuries and football in all away from the Peewee level we heard would Kyle turley had to say now we talk about. The new suit and has been brought -- some NFL players rich money former saints player big -- favorable join us. Later on -- talk about the student that has been brought forth and he's -- just concerned about him he's concerned about his son. Who is now in the NFL and in how this could relate to him Tim Epstein joins us right now sports law attorney to help. Sort of legalities of all this -- morning Tim you Dylan. Well thanks for taking the time what is. I guess we should start by drawing the legal distinction. Between the settlement that was made before. Who that applies to in the news knew his suit that was filed. Well this settlement. That's been proposed it's for all of the individual lawsuits that have already been -- That were consolidated. In Philadelphia down the multi district litigation. And so Europe former players I'll shoot. Against the NFL along with how many torturers. Right now and there are still. So this news to it was brought recently. I'm down in federal court in New Orleans. Revolved around -- the one of the players mentioned body cream Jimy Williams still key now in France. And it basically. Covering the same allegations that are in the other lawsuits that were pending until well. Com -- this is suits say that they ages failed to protect players are that they hid information and that they. There were things that they should have passed along the players that I guess that that. The Helmand -- really protecting them or that they Helms were defective that. As did manufacturer knew or should've known Lou what is involved here what kind of standard of proof they look at net. So what you in terms. The allegation against you know well in outfit that the entertainment we get hurt because the dangerous game that some of the players would take. Well what the players are claiming is that you knew or risk from concussions and long term effects of concussions. And you can tell us what -- and I'll bet pot it would be including. Dementia. And some other chronic brain damage issues. Yeah issues relative to helmet manufacturers. Would be used to -- that this would give us some type of protection lettuce on believe that this could give some protection are all. Concussions. And for long term effects of concussions. Now it's still you don't know guided him and -- -- in -- Now so it. I don't know what you saw with the proposed settlement amount you know -- recently. It is part of an attempt on the part of you know they'll. Q -- out lawsuits foreigner to produce any documentation. Might show that they -- she doing things. All the players including long term concussions. Before we get to how you prove that I can remember watching NFL football for a long time and it seems like whenever they have a close up of a helmet. You would see that little sticker on there with the with a with a little bitty sign branded and I would wonder what -- said in would presume it was some kinda warning label -- An effect I think he remembered saying warning and a little bigger print then. The rest of it in and you know as we sat there watching football we would some times kid around with -- each other saying you know -- It is dangerous you heard somebody. He you can get hurt where a football -- playing NFL football. But now the Zack and I have. Anything to do with this -- come to -- do you know what that little stickers said. In terms of of disclaimer or warning and would protect Riddell with a helmet manufacturer. Well that what -- seeing the helmet. -- -- -- member -- the helmet manufacturers are not part of this proposed settlement so. The lawsuit. That were -- and so now you were talking about the seven or 65 million dollar figure. Helmet manufacturers and part of that so assuming that judge Brodie out Philadelphia approved settlement between you know -- former players. They can still pursue. Their lawsuit against the helmet manufacturers. And helmet manufacturers are -- couple number one stickers that you talked about which is a warning. That -- Warning that this is simply meant -- service protection against. Catastrophic injury that skull or the state that does not protect against concussions. Other line. -- -- had on him that stickers said that that's -- we could ever see and you know watching at home and those of us live. Never being closed in NFL home I didn't know that that sticker actually said it does not protect you against concussions. Well that with a -- currently now so that they're being if you cannot be sticker and then their is that sticker that came on. But be specific wording on that sticker -- the ball over time certainly as we were all coming to. Knowledge about the long term effects of concussions. There's been a desired so put that specific warning label on and that's going to be -- different different warning came in a different. And I'm not trying to be silly but this could be an important part of it right with a little sticker. Or does I answer. It could be in an important part of it is what the argument would be on the helmet manufacturers -- You -- -- -- You assume that in essence every time like every time you put that helmet on you -- similarly. But again. That is relatively new. Shadow war on that sticker. An eight year -- airport in occur in some of those years covered on -- these certain. Outplayed focal. So how would the plaintiffs prove. That the NFL. Will well I guess is it two different things to different standards they have to prove that the NFL knew. About the the effect of injuries and then do they did they have to prove that with the -- manufacture or just that. That the product that helmet was defective. You you have. Two types -- going on here with Deanna felt beat delegates are. -- that the and it Phil knew of the long term effects of concussions and didn't fully reprise the players. So the player -- say -- of course we knew the risks we know football dangerous for we know were getting in Q. But we don't know is it. 102030. Years down -- our brains are gonna turn to much and it's going to be you'll point where we might have an oral. You know they're aware of the injuries and neck injuries and things of that sort but they weren't aware of the facts concussions and the allegation that the NFL did no name withheld this information from the players. Music go ahead. As far as the true. On all the manufacturers it would be more that they rapper and it. That there would be some protection given relative concussions and long term facts. And that that actually would not change. Or that they at certain information about long term facts. And they also with helping it to chopper -- against -- and lectures. To the all the main fracture don't have a direct relationship with players. -- manufactures Riddell is the big boy on the block when it comes in this. Case though. In terms of other injuries and precedence. -- eventually extend to knees or elbows or shoulders where. Well -- this knee surgery that I didn't know it could develop vintage JD generated arthritis or. Is that specious because everybody knows we're knee injuries. Can lead and and they've already or all always known that. You're your your your isolating the issue could be the problem for people that are gonna file lawsuits. That potentially could outlaw adapter that settlement and that settlement goes into effect. It's it. It's a lot of the allegations are about awareness not only a short term effects of potential injuries but long term effects so. That would be typical proof point. Relative to something like you need her ankle or help well. Or -- -- because there is the knowledge in general public side. And certainly knowledge with regard football players. -- I -- mine now I might not. Do you -- -- walker. Come 2030 years from my. NFL players. Walking around meeting with current players so there is this idea that. You can draw or elation now and I think people are on notice you can draw a correlation now between concussions. And long -- -- gender brain effects. Where do you think Tim Epstein we're talking a sports law attorney about this most recent suit filed by some NFL players against league and against and -- manufacturer. Where it is is eventually wind up in terms of the NFL in liability. And concussions and of violence board in the NFL protecting itself or helmet manufacturers. Yeah for that matter if if for example their found libel and ride though is declares bankruptcy goes out of business or decides they don't. You know what we can assume this risk we're not going to be in the helmet business anymore we'll just make. She user whatever it is that right -- makes. Did DC possibly changing the game mode that lets face -- America loves. Well at that that certainly worse case scenario or right now or forty and well and I think -- so -- that you. This possible settlement. That they're waiting for court approval on seven -- 65 million. Well. That's real money it is relatively bargain or so particularly because it is not at. Produce any documentation made it shouldn't have done something wrong. Right open -- different situation now right they'll certainly did not have economic where football. Of the now but they do -- the opportunity to potentially get and other products you know elements seem to -- Brett Butler. So. What I think right now pretty good defensive. In terms of this is not meant to protect against concussions. On helmets are meant to protect skull fracture meant to protect. Note that the skin. Surrounding the skull and on the -- By. Certainly there's ripped -- them out but I don't think it'll be. Written that would. Line up with the worst case scenario you outlined. And quickly that the settlement the 765. Million as -- He has 765. Million dollar settlement. Who does take cover because there are tremendous amount of NFL players I would think that. He could show that they have brain injuries or maybe nine in and how how long does this go on her how often does it replicated itself. In terms of brain injuries. Should be the idea of the settlement right now. Is there it will be able to cover those people who -- and it did. Symptoms or even died and it could be diagnosed. I afterward that they support from cheeky. So what eight in -- out to people -- sick now the proposal. Settlement is it at least half of the money going toward images can get paid out next year's. So that's a win for the former players to have. Current manifestation. Of injury or family -- those who want players. Former players due to the yeah brain injury YouTube period in Libya. -- anticipated my next question because then how far back can you go. As long -- is game's been around I mean in who has a cause of action is it just spouses -- it. Whose sons daughters that could say we know what my dead also suffered from that but he died 1020 years ago but he did. Adversely impact our family in her life. You know it's not clear yet. How far they're going to be able to go but they are setting up which part of the abundantly two million dollars of it is gonna go to compensate. And administrator for. This fund as your listeners would know on the gulf he's certainly -- administrators. Relative to. Images from the ego will -- So similarly there will be an administrator who will make the call on who's getting what dollar amount. And we. Gonna go right now but what we do you know it's. Going forward in the future. That this is probably going to be extremely difficult someone who current player or future player in the NFL. Make any type of recovery. -- or hang -- let him. Tell me why it's gonna be more difficult because they will have been apprised of the risks. Because you'll be surprised -- the risks and it'll be likely be part of the collective bargaining agreement. Between India now and NFL players association it'll be something that organ or in the Contra. It is you have the damage now -- These type of accuracy and become level cap -- -- you know going. These are moderate. If something happens to mean that the potential for. So I make the choice like Tim has been very informative I appreciate your time I really do you know become back on with the -- that -- on -- yet.

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