A professional sports career can be relatively brief under the best circumstances, and injury or illness can abruptly cut that career even shorter. When a player is permanently sidelined from his or her sport because of a disabling sickness or injury, the good income and fringe benefits don’t last long.
Elite athletes and up-and-coming college stars often purchase private long-term disability policies as protection against a career-ending disability. Sports teams also take out policies on marquee players in case that star who puts spectators in the seats goes down. Unfortunately, many players later discover that collecting on their disability claim is not easy.
Professional Athlete Disability Insurance Claims
As the top disability law firm in the United States, DarrasLaw has represented many professional athletes, college recruits and team owners in disability insurance litigation. These high-stakes disputes are not for the faint of heart, but founding trial lawyer Frank Darras and his legal team are not intimidated by billion-dollar insurance companies.
DarrasLaw has handled disability cases in the Big Four sports leagues and many other professional sports. We represent athletes or teams regarding disability claims for:
- NFL football players
- NBA basketball players
- MLB baseball players
- NHL hockey players
- MLS soccer players
- PGA golfers
- USTA tennis players
- NASCAR/auto racing drivers
- WWE/pro wrestlers
- Mixed martial arts fighters
- Thoroughbred racing jockeys
- Professional cyclists
- Elite track and field athletes
We are intimately familiar with the nuances of disability policies in the sporting industry:
— Accidental death and dismemberment (AD&D) insurance against catastrophic accidents such as a bus or plane crash while traveling from city to city
— Contract completion and stop-loss policies purchased by owners to cover guaranteed salaries or replace lost ticket revenues in the event of injury, illness or death of a star player or several members of the team
— Temporary total disability purchased by athletes or owners to cover salary and expenses for short-term issues such as an off-season or season-ending injury
— Permanent total disability purchased by pro athletes or drafted players in the event that they must leave the sport due to sickness or accident. These policies insure the millions of dollars in future earnings that would otherwise evaporate with a career-ending disability.
Collecting on Long-Term Disability Insurance Claims
Permanent disability coverage is prohibitively expensive for most teams and most players. These policies are typically purchased by proven athletes who have multimillion-dollar incomes to protect or blue chip college recruits who have not yet been signed to the big contract.
When you pay major premiums for the best insurance on the planet, you do not expect to be second-guessed or nickel-and-dimed by your own insurer. Yet insurance companies that underwrite permanent disability policies for professional athletes will use every tactic to downplay, delay or deny claims. To athletes and families, the future is on the line. To the insurers, it’s just business.
The veteran attorneys of DarrasLaw know how to counter the defense strategies to force disability insurers to honor their obligations. We have the ability to go to trial to litigate the fine print, but our relationships with decision-makers in the insurance industry often enable us to favorably resolve these disputes out of court.
Free Consultation With Nationally Recognized Disability Lawyers
There is a short window to exploit a talent for professional sports. We are here to help you protect that future income. Our experienced attorneys can advise pro athletes and college seniors who are negotiating a disability policy. When claims are denied or disputed, we can step in to get the money released in a timely fashion or take insurers to task for bad faith denial.