Brain Injury Association of America Files NFL Brief with Court of Appeals

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The Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) submitted an amicus brief to the United States Third Circuit Court of Appeals regarding the National Football League (NFL) concussion litigation before the court. The brief explains the science of traumatic brain injury (TBI) and highlights misconceptions inherent and relied upon by the District Court when it approved the settlement agreement.

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The vast majority of retired football players experiencing physical, emotional, and behavioral impairments following repetitive concussions remain excluded and uncompensated under settlement terms.

On August 20, 2015, the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) submitted an amicus brief to the United States Third Circuit Court of Appeals regarding the National Football League (NFL) concussion litigation before the court. The brief explains the science of traumatic brain injury (TBI) and highlights misconceptions inherent and relied upon by the District Court when it approved the settlement agreement (E.D. Pa. No. 2-12-md-02323).

BIAA hopes that the information provided will put the settlement terms in the proper context, and that the court will set the agreement aside in the interest of retired NFL football players who have sustained brain injury and will not be adequately served under the agreement as it is currently structured.

Founded in 1980, the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) is the oldest and largest nationwide brain injury advocacy organization. As the voice of brain injury, BIAA has an obligation to ensure that this settlement fairly considers all players for whose benefit this action was commenced. BIAA seeks to provide the court with unbiased, accurate information regarding the consequences of TBI and to protect the integrity of scientific research on brain injury.

In the brief, which was written and submitted by BIAA board member Shana De Caro, Esq., and Michael V. Kaplen, Esq., Professorial Lecturer in Law, The George Washington University Law School, the authors wrote:

“The settlement neither recognizes nor compensates the majority of players suffering long-term consequences of brain trauma, but merely rewards certain, small, discrete groups. The vast majority of retired football players experiencing physical, emotional, and behavioral impairments following repetitive concussions remain excluded and uncompensated under settlement terms. In the interest of expediency, the District Court relied on self-serving submissions of counsel, which unjustifiably categorized the vast majority of brain injuries as not being “serious” or unrelated to repetitive head trauma, ignoring the overwhelming scientific consensus regarding the causes and ramifications of traumatic brain injury.”

The complete text of the amicus, as well as documents filed by BIAA with the district court, are on the BIAA website at http://www.biausa.org/NFLAmicus.

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The Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) is the country’s oldest and largest nationwide brain injury advocacy organization. Our mission is to advance brain injury prevention, research, treatment, and education, and to improve the quality of life for all individuals impacted by brain injury. Through advocacy, we bring help, hope, and healing to millions of individuals living with brain injury, their families and the professionals who serve them.

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Rob Traister
Brain Injury Association of America
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