Lieff Cabraser Civil Justice Blog
NFL Concussion Lawsuits Move Forward To Involve Opt-Out Cases

NFL Concussion Lawsuits Move Forward To Involve Opt-Out Cases

In the multidistrict NFL concussion litigation, a Pennsylvania federal judge has ruled that former NFL players who opted out of the original April 2015 settlement will be able to file a new complaint. These 53 opt-out cases involve 153 former NFL players, including football stars Joe Horn and Chris McAlister, “who decided not to join the 22,000 others taking part in an uncapped settlement related to concussions and degenerative neurological conditions resulting from their playing days,” according to Law360. Lieff Cabraser partner Wendy R. Fleishman has been named class counsel and will be representing the opt-out plaintiffs in the litigation.

The opt-out players have an April 26 deadline to file their motion, and if the motion is granted, will have 15 days to submit a complaint. The NFL will then have 60 days to submit its reply.

As reported by Law360, “The original number of opt-outs went over 220 in November 2014 during the initial approval process for the concussion settlement. Among other things, the opt-outs said the settlement arbitrarily offered more compensation for certain concussion-related degenerative illnesses, such as Alzheimer’s, yet restricted payouts for others, including chronic traumatic encephalopathy or CTE.”

U.S. District Judge Anita Brody granted final approval of the original settlement, offering each retired football athlete “diagnosed with some of the most serious degenerative conditions connected to traumatic brain injuries, including dementia, Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease” between $1.5 million to $5 million.

Now, the NFL concussion litigation will continue to move forward with the inclusion of opt-out cases. The case is In re: National Football League Players’ Concussion Injury Litigation, case number 2:12-md-02323, in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

NFL Players Lawsuit Summary

Lieff Cabraser represents former professional football players and their spouses in a class action lawsuit seeking damages for the painful and debilitating injuries the players suffered from repetitive head traumas during their careers in the NFL. The injuries include concussions and repeated head impacts, traumatic brain injuries, and latent neurodegenerative disorders and diseases.

The complaint further seeks to recover fair compensation for the players’ spouses from the loss of companionship, affection, and support the spouses have suffered due to their husbands’ injuries. For those players that have not yet evidenced the long term physical and mental effects of repetitive head traumas, the complaint seeks the establishment of a medical monitoring program. This program would provide specialized testing for the early detection of the long term effects of repetitive head traumas. Contact us about your case or learn more about the NFL concussions lawsuit.

About Wendy Fleishman

A partner in our New York office, Ms. Fleishman is a passionate and experienced lawyer for the injured and the loved ones of those who died due to the wrongful misconduct of others. With more than thirty years of courtroom experience to draw upon, a large part of Wendy’s practice today consists of representing patients prescribed drugs with undisclosed and dangerous side effects or who received defective medical devices.

Ms. Fleishman has served in leadership roles in significant multidistrict litigation cases in federal and state courts involving pharmaceutical drugs, medical devices, and personal health products. These cases include: the Stryker Rejuvenate and ABG-II Hip Implant Litigation, Zimmer Durom Cup Hip Implant Litigation, Yaz and Yasmin Litigation, DePuy Hip Implant Litigation, Medtronic Sprint Fidelis Heart Lead, the Guidant Cardiac Defibrillator, the Ortho Evra Patch Litigation, and contaminated contact lens solution litigation against Bausch & Lomb and Abbott Medical Optics.