Texas families who have suffered the loss of a loved one can file lawsuits against organizations they believe were negligent in regards to caring for the deceased. One family is filing a wrongful death suit against the NFL for the death of former star Patriots linebacker Junior Seau. Seau committed suicide, and the family believes that the brain damage caused by his career is what led him to that point.
According to his family, Seau suffered from depression, mood swings and insomnia during the last few years of his life. After his death, reports showed that Seau had a brain disease called chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE. The suit alleges that the disease was caused by the numerous violent hits Seau faced on the field throughout his career.
Seau’s ex-wife and four children filed the suit, claiming that the NFL is responsible for hiding evidence and information regarding the dangers of being hit in the head so many times. The suit also alleges that violent hits are encouraged in the NFL and that the negative consequences of those hits are rarely mentioned.
NFL helmet manufacturer, Riddell Inc., is also being charged for their negligence in designing and manufacturing the helmets worn by Seau and other players. The suit alleges that the helmets were unreasonably unsafe.
Lawsuits against the NFL regarding concussions and brain injury are not uncommon. Almost 4,000 NFL players have filed suits over the past few years. The family hopes that by filing the lawsuit, there will be more attention given to NFL player safety issues. The NFL states that it is committed to player safety and will continue to further research relating to CTE.
Source: Kiiitv, “Seau’s family sues NFL over brain injuries,” Barry Wilner, Jan. 23, 2013