13 February 2017

NCAA Concussion Injury Litigation Information

In re National Collegiate Athletic Association Student-Athlete Concussion Injury Litigation,
Case No. 1:13-cv-09116
(United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois)
If You Are a Current or Former Student-Athlete Who Played An NCAA-Sanctioned Sport at an NCAA School At Any Time Through July 15, 2016,
Your Rights May Be Affected by a Class Action Lawsuit
A Settlement, subject to court approval, has been reached in a class action lawsuit called In re National Collegiate Athletic Association Student-Athlete Concussion Injury Litigation, Case No. 1:13-cv-09116 (N.D. Ill.).  It is pending in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
The lawsuit claims that the NCAA was negligent and breached its duty to protect all current and former student-athletes by failing to adopt appropriate rules regarding concussions.  The lawsuit seeks medical monitoring relief to diagnose possible long-term effects of concussions or the accumulation of sub‑concussive hits for all current and former student-athletes. The lawsuit also seeks changes to the NCAA’s concussion management and return-to-play guidelines.
The NCAA denies these allegations and denies it did anything wrong.  If the Court does not approve the Settlement, the NCAA will argue, among other things, that the case should not be a class action.  The Court has not decided whether or not Defendant did anything wrong.
You are a Class Member and included in the Settlement if you played an NCAA-sanctioned sport at an NCAA school at any time up to July 15, 2016.
The NCAA has agreed to a Medical Monitoring Fund of $70,000,000, which, after deducting administrative costs, and attorneys’ fees and expenses, will fund the screening of Class Members as well as medical evaluations for those Class Members who qualify as a result of the screening during the 50-year Medical Monitoring Program. The medical evaluations will be designed to assess symptoms related to persistent post‑concussion syndrome, as well as cognitive, mood, behavioral, and motor problems that may be associated with mid- to late-life onset diseases that may be linked to concussions and/or subconcussive hits, such as Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy and related disorders. In addition, the NCAA has committed $5,000,000 to fund research regarding the prevention, diagnosis, care, and management of concussions and mid- to late-life neurodegenerative disease.  The NCAA has also agreed to chang e its policies and procedures for concussion management and return to play. You can download the Second Amended Settlement Agreement from www.collegeathleteconcussionsettlement.com or call the toll-free number listed below and request one.
The Court appointed the law firms Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP and Siprut PC to represent you.  You do not have to pay these attorneys or anyone else to participate.  They will ask the Court for attorneys’ fees and costs, which would be paid from the Medical Monitoring Fund. You may hire your own lawyer to appear in Court for you; if you do, you have to pay that lawyer.
Do Nothing and Remain in the Settlement.  If you do nothing, you are considered a participant in the Settlement.  You will be bound by all Court orders.  If the Settlement is approved, certain potential legal claims you may have against the NCAA will be resolved and forever released. Also, if the Settlement is approved, you will have the opportunity to complete a screening questionnaire to determine whether you qualify for up to two medical evaluations during the 50‑year medical monitoring period.
Opt Out (“Exclude Yourself”) from the Settlement.  You must submit a written request to Opt Out of the Class and the Settlement to the Notice Administrator. The complete, signed Opt-Out request must be mailed to the Notice Administrator postmarked no later thanMarch 10, 2017. However, if you are a current NCAA student-athlete on or after 6 months after the Effective Date and your school fails to put in place a concussion management plan within six months of the Effective Date, you will have a second opportunity to opt-out so long as you do so within 12 months of the Effective Date.
Object or Comment on the Settlement.  Written objections must be filed and served no later than March 10, 2017.  You give up your right to sue and are bound by Court orders even if your objection is rejected. If you file an objection, you may appear at the Fairness Hearing to explain your objection, but you are not required to attend.
The Court will determine whether to approve the Settlement and attorneys’ fees and expenses at a Fairness Hearing to be held on May 5, 2017, at 10 a.m., at the Everett M. Dirksen United States Courthouse for the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, 219 South Dearborn Street, Chicago, Illinois.  You may attend this hearing if you wish, but you do not have to attend in order to participate in the proposed Settlement.
If you have questions or want to complete a Screening Questionnaire:
Write:  In re: NCAA Student-Athlete Concussion Injury Litigation, c/o Gilardi & Co. LLC, PO Box 43414, Providence, RI 02940-3414

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