The dangers of playing football have been debated for many years in California and across the nation. Along with the lawsuits former players have filed seeking benefits and coverage for medical expenses from the National Football League (NFL), workers’ compensation claims are growing more common. The physical nature of the game of pro-football is well-known. What is being debated is whether players are warranted in seeking workers’ compensation and the extent to which they should be covered. Like any other workers’ compensation case, having legal advice can be key to receiving benefits.
A recent case involving a legendary Hall of Famer asserts that he suffered from multiple traumatic injuries stemming from his NFL career. The former tight end for the San Diego Chargers, Kellen Winslow, Sr., states that he has brain injuries and injuries to his nervous system due to cumulative trauma from his playing days. The 62-year-old Mr. Winslow filed his claim in early 2018. He says that he suffered the damage from 1979 to 1988 when he established himself as one of football’s best players.
Mr. Winslow has filed his case against CIGA (California Insurance Guarantee Association). This entity pays claims for insurers that are insolvent. The company is disputing the case saying that there are restrictions for injuries that are considered, “older.” Mr. Winslow sought a settlement.
There will be a medical examination to assess his case and decide if he should receive workers’ compensation benefits. Other players have applied for workers’ compensation benefits in the past because of concussions, chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) and other injuries throughout their bodies. Mr. Winslow did not take part in those filings.
While football is prominent around the world and the players are well-known and well-paid for the jobs they do, it is still a job where the players are employees and have certain rights if they are injured. Whereas in the past, they were treated as people who made a choice and should accept the consequences, there is a growing movement to grant players and former players workers’ compensation for injuries they have suffered.
Like any workers’ compensation case, it is imperative to understand the rules and take the necessary steps to file the claim for benefits. Having legal assistance from a law firm that understands all areas of workers’ compensation can be beneficial.