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Judge Approves Amendments to Stop Racial Bias in NFL Concussion Trading | Sports

Philadelphia — A black retired soccer player who was denied payment for dementia in the NFL’s $ 1 billion concussion settlement will seek retests or test and pay under a revised plan finaled on Friday. Claims can be rescored to eliminate formal racial prejudice.

Anger over the use of “racial norms” in dementia tests, assuming that blacks have a low cognitive baseline score and are difficult to show football-related mental decline, angered NFL and player lawyers last year’s negotiation table ..

The revision could allow many retired players to resubmit their claims and add more than $ 100 million to the NFL’s legal tab. The NFL has paid more than $ 800 million so far through this fund. This is almost half of the dementia claims. The dementia award averages about $ 600,000.

“Thousands of black players are in a position to benefit from these changes to the settlement,” representing former players Naje Davenport and Kevin Henry, whose 2020 racist proceedings revealed the problem. Attorney Cyril V. Smith said.

Philadelphia’s US District Senior Judge Anita B. Brody, who has overseen the NFL concussion case for 10 years, dismissed the proceedings but ordered the parties to address the matter. She approved the negotiated changes in the order submitted on Friday.

More than 3,300 ex-players or their families are seeking awards for brain damage associated with their play days, of which more than 2,000 are seeking awards for moderate to progressive dementia. ..

Cases of dementia have proven to be the most controversial, with only 3 out of 10 claims paid so far. An additional one-third was rejected, and the remaining one-third, after several layers of reviews by claim managers, medical and legal consultants, audit investigators, and judges, often remain problematic.

In one of the recent rulings showing that families face difficulties in navigating the billing process, reviewers said that CTE had progressed after death in 2019, or that they had chronic traumatic encephalopathy. Lamented the long delay experienced by the widow of the former player who turned out.

His medical records show “progressive cognitive decline and unrefuted evidence that he was suffering from CTE at the time of his death,” writes reviewer David Hoffman.

Hoffman, a contract law expert at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, said, “But these diagnoses and the medical records that support them do not fit into the prescribed box of reconciliation for claiming a qualified diagnosis (of dementia). “.

A black athlete who was 57 years old at the time of his death also standardized his score, taking into account race, education, and other factors, according to the protocol used at the time. According to Hoffman, even if his test was re-scored under the new race blind system, his claim would not be eligible for the award.

The majority of league players (70% of active players and over 60% of live retirees) are black. Therefore, the changes are important and are expected to be potentially costly to the NFL.

The agreement to end race noming follows months of private negotiations between their lawyers, the NFL, the class counsel of nearly 20,000 retired players, and the NFL lawyers.

Ken Jenkins and his wife, Amy Lewis, have fought for change and pressured the Civil Rights Department of the Justice Department to investigate alleged discrimination.

The binary scoring system used in dementia testing (one for blacks and one for everyone else) is a rough way to take into account the socio-economic background of the patient. Developed by neurologists in the 1990s. Experts say it was never intended to be used to determine payments in court settlements.

However, the 2015 settlement was adopted by both sides by resolving a lawsuit accusing the NFL of knowing about the risk of repeated concussion.

The settlement also includes a monetary award to former players with Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. CTE (sometimes referred to as a characteristic football illness) is not covered, except for men diagnosed after death before April 2015, a deadline set to avoid promoting suicide. ..

Judge Approves Amendments to Stop Racial Bias in NFL Concussion Trading | Sports

Source link Judge Approves Amendments to Stop Racial Bias in NFL Concussion Trading | Sports

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