A judge in Philadelphia ordered the NFL and former players to mediation to discuss the possibility of reaching a settlement in the crucial concussion litigation. The decision came as many believed District Judge Anita Brody would issue a preliminary ruling on July 22nd about whether the concussion suits would be allowed to proceed against the NFL.
Judge Brody was expected to issue a ruling on the NFL’s motion to dismiss the lawsuits. The NFL argued that because some players were covered by the collective bargaining agreements signed between the league and players that the matter should be settled in arbitration and not a courtroom. Brody said that after having some exploratory conversations with attorneys on both sides she decided to order mediation to see if it was possible to reach a mutually acceptable resolution.
The suit by nearly 4,000 former NFL players argues that the NFL knowingly failed to protect players from concussions. The suits claim that horrible long-term effects have resulted from the repeated head injuries, including depression and dementia. The traumatic brain injuries have even led to suicide among several players, including Junior Seau and Dave Duerson.
Brody appointed Layn Phillips, a retired judge, to serve as one of the mediators. Judge Brody ordered that both sides identify two other mediators to help work through a possible solution and said that she wants Phillips to report back on the issue by September 3rd. Brody made clear that she will not rule on the NFL’s motion to dismiss until hearing back from Phillips.
Pope McGlamry P.C., currently represents former professional football players and their families for injuries and damages sustained as a result of suffering concussions while playing professional football and is actively involved in the current concussion litigation. If you or someone you love has been injured during your professional football career, you may be entitled to compensation.
Source: “Multibillion-Dollar NFL Concussion Lawsuit Goes to Mediation,” by Paul Barrett, published at Businessweek.com.
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