Concussions: Assuming the Risk

Sports Industry News and Analysis

Concussions: Assuming the Risk

In legal circles, the term is “assumption of risk.” That is certainly going to come into play, one way or another, in the massive NFL concussion lawsuit currently before the courts.

On another front in Western Pennsylvania, one court has already rendered an opinion regarding a concussed athlete and assumption of risk.

The incident causing the plaintiff’s concussion occurred when she was a senior on her high school’s cheerleading squad. The plaintiff was “participating in a stunt and suffered a concussion after she was struck in the head by a flyer.” Her coach “was allegedly aware of the plaintiff’s injury and the accompanying symptoms. The athlete subsequently “received medical treatment and was medically restricted from practice for two weeks.”

The athlete, after being cleared to return to her squad without restriction, then suffered another concussion in practice while performing a stunt. Her coach “allegedly observed the injury and failed to file a written report of the injury with the high school’s athletic director.”

What followed were additional incidents of concussion-like injuries. What eventually ensued was the family filing suit against the coach and the school district.

You can read the complete story and learn of the court’s decision involving this case in the upcoming June 2013 issue of Concussion Litigation Reporter.