NFL Settles Concussion Lawsuit

The NFL has reached a $765 million settlement over brain injuries among 18,000 retired players. The settlement will fund concussion-related compensation, medical exams, some legal expenses, and a medical research program. More than 4,500 former athletes filed suit, accusing the league of profiting from the sport’s violence while hiding the risk of concussion-related brain injury.

The family of Dave Duerson was among those involved in the lawsuit. Duerson, former Chicago Bears and Notre Dame safety, committed suicide in 2011, leaving a note asking for his brain to be examined for football-related damage. Boston University researchers found that Duerson suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a trauma-induced disease found in dozens of retired and deceased NFL players. The family had originally filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against the NFL, but it was consolidated with the concussion-related lawsuits in February of 2012 because of its similarity.

Through the settlement, individual awards will be capped at $5 million for men with Alzheimer’s, $3 million for dementia, and $4 million for those diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy.

Rather than spending millions of dollars and many years litigating thousands of individual claims, the agreement will provide relief and support where and when it is needed. This is a historic agreement that will help to promote safety for football players at all levels.