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Pro Athletes Can’t Rely On CA Work Comp Anymore

The case for pro athletes to consider disability insurance could not be more ripe than it is right now. With all the information that has come out about concussions in the NFL and the longterm effects of a career of hard hits now coupled with the news that the Governor of California is limiting access to the state’s workers’ compensation system for sports injuries, the time is now to talk to a disability insurance professional about getting the right coverage for you.

The biggest misconception that Frank Darras would like to clear up for all professional athletes – whether in the NFL, MLB, NASCAR or golf: “When a guy makes $18 million per year, he probably doesn’t need disability insurance.” That couldn’t be farther from the truth. Regardless of who you are, your lifestyle typically meets your income level at some point. You need to protect your income – near the level that you expect to continue collecting – through disability insurance regardless of the size of your paycheck.

The NFL and MLB secured a win when Governor Jerry Brown signed limits on work comp for sports injuries – including serious brain injuries – into law. Players who did not play at least two seasons for a California-based franchise will no longer be able to seek workers’ compensation benefits in California. Since 2006, more than 3,000 players have filed for benefits.

While California legislators call this a win for taxpayers, it is a loss for professional athletes who do not take steps on their own to ensure their future finances. A long term disability policy may be your best option, especially in the wake of these legislative changes, to ensure that you have benefits that will cover injuries you are sustaining in your career, today.

Source: The Los Angeles Times, “California limits workers’ comp sports injury claims,” October 8, 2013

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