The NFL and NCAA Should Consider Starting Programs that Educate Players on Individual Disability Insurance Policies that Offer Real Protection to Players
September 5, 2013
In spite of last week's $765M settlement between the NFL and past NFL players and spouses of those who are deceased, the conversation continues, as another lawsuit has been filed against the NFL.
On September 4, 2013, more was revealed about the NFL settlement and according to the AP article, Goodell: Settlement 'significant amount of money' - Goodell was quoted, saying, ""We were able to find common ground to be able to get relief to the players and their families now rather than spending years litigating."
That is a great start, but players want to take this further and the four former players -- Jimmy Williams, Rich Mauti, Jimmy Keyes and Nolan Franz -- filed a federal lawsuit in New Orleans last week against the league and helmet maker Riddell, claiming they hid information about the dangers of brain injury. They want medical care for past, current and future players. See AP article, September 4, 2013: 4 ex-NFL players file new lawsuit.
"For years players have suffered collateral damage from playing football. Whether it's a fractured leg, torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) or concussions, there is danger involved when playing football. Football has gotten tougher and players much bigger over the years. I think what could drastically reduce these ongoing lawsuits against the NFL is a program that puts players on the offensive when it comes to protection. A program that educates both college and professional players about protecting their brains, bodies, incomes and futures," says Frank N. Darras, top disability lawyer in Ontario, CA who represents professional players on disability and long-term care matters.
As the AP reported, the new lawsuit claims that both the NFL and Riddell failed to protect them from brain injuries and that they want the NFL to set up and pay for a medical monitoring and treatment program for all former, current and future NFL players.
"Since this new lawsuit addresses current and future NFL players that depend on their physical talent for a living, it's a great time to sit down and take a hard look at what real protection means. Real protection is a rock solid individual disability insurance policy that insulates players from financial disaster should a career ending injury occur," says Darras.
I don't see this subject going away until the players effectively understand that there is a lot they can do, on their own, to protect their futures, their incomes and their families. Protection against a tough hit should prevent a tougher hit in their lives, due to injury. Getting the right expert to help explain how and what own occupation or total disability insurance protects, would be a great investment for both future players and the NFL, says Darras.