Assemblyman Helps Detroit Lions Deny Injury Claims

Posted By Thomas F. Martin, PLC || 23-Apr-2013

FRESNO, CA – Clovis resident Zack Follett, a former professional athlete, would have been prevented from even filing a claim against the Lions’ workers’ compensation insurance carrier in California. Today he protested AB1309 outside Assem. Perea’s office. “I don’t understand why Assemblyman Perea is authoring AB 1309 that increases owner profits at the expense of player medical care and disability compensation. Whose side are you on? AB 1309 favors a well-connected special interest with a unique exemption from insurance requirements that all others must follow. AB 1309 would shift NFL owners’ injury costs to taxpayers, aiding them in avoiding responsibility for players’ injuries, such as dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Lou Gehrig’s disease,” asked Follett.

The sports team owners are working across the nation to close the door to injured workers’ claims that should be paid by the teams’ workers’ compensation insurance.

“AB 1309, sponsored by NFL owners, is the owners’ attempt to shirk their responsibility for their injured players,” said Follett. “If these few richest individuals in America can avoid providing medical care and disability compensation for work-related injuries, the taxpayers will end up paying for care that should be paid by professional sports teams’ insurers.”

Although AB 1309 seems to be aimed only at professional athletes, it could set a precedent that undercuts workers’ compensation insurance coverage for many other “everyday occupations.”

AB 1309 is set to be voted upon in the Assembly Insurance Committee on Wednesday, April 24.

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