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California’s New Workers’ Compensation Law Prompts Thousand More Athletes to File Lawsuits

athletesAfter California has successfully passed a law limiting athletes from filing worker’s compensation claims in the state last year, its victory apparently has come at an unfavorable cost.

Statistics have revealed that since the approval of the new worker’s compensation law, which bars athletes who never played for a California team from filing a claim in the state, more than a thousand of players across the country have rushed to file a worker’s compensation claim prior to the September 15 deadline.

As a result of the huge influx of lawsuits, most of the nation’s top professional sports league, such as the National Football League (NFL), Major League Baseball (MLB) and the National Hockey League (NHL), are now facing hundreds of millions of dollars to settle cases.

In the data gathered by the Los Angeles Times regarding its own analysis of state workers’ compensation, it was noted that in the first two weeks of September, there were 569 claims against NLF filed by both current and retired players, while for the MLB, there were 283 claims filed. As for the NHL, there were 113 claims filed and 79 cases against the National Basketball Association (NBA).

Roughly 70-percent of the claims include allegations of head concussion caused by repetitive blows in the head, head trauma and brain injury which they sustained from the playing. Most of the claimants have never played for any California team.

As it may seem, California’s effort to reduce the surge of worker’s compensation claims in the state has only attracted more players to file a lawsuit before the new law takes into effect.

Although several sports league like the Major League Soccer (MLS) and the Women’s NBA had previously predicted a jump in the filing of claims prior the deadline, they were still shocked by the significant increase.

No one expected that the increase will be about 10 ten times higher than the average monthly levels since 2011. For further details, see Time’s database.

(kindly click on the image for a more vivid view)

Image gives credit to LA Times.

After the deadline, there were only 49 claims against all sports filed.

It could be remembered that tensions among the athletes, the owners and the league itself have started to rise in 2011, following the death of several renowned athletes that were linked to head injury or concussion but  the flow of lawsuits started to arrive as early as 2006.

For years, California has been a favorite recourse for most athletes across the nation who gear to file a claim due to the state’s extensive workers’ protection system. So far, there are more than 4,500 workers compensation claims filed in California.

Posted in Workers Compensation.

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