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The Gazette (Colorado Springs, Colorado)
The Supreme Court has rejected challenges to the estimated $1 billion plan by the NFL to settle thousands of concussion lawsuits filed by former players. The court's action on Monday clears the way for payouts to begin to former players who have been diagnosed brain injuries linked to repeated concussions. The settlement covers more than 20,000 retired NFL players for the next 65 years.
The Supreme Court on Monday rejected the final two challenges to the estimated $1 billion settlement between the NFL and thousands of its former players who have been diagnosed with brain injuries linked to repeated concussions. Players who already have been diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's or dementia could begin receiving payments in 90 to 120 days.
"The benefits process will finally move forward," said attorney Christopher Seeger, who represented the class of more than 20,000 retired NFL players now eligible for payments for the next 65 years.
The league has estimated that 6,000 former players — or nearly three in 10 — could develop Alzheimer's disease or moderate dementia. Payments could be as high as $5 million for those with Lou Gehrig's disease, also called amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS; the average payout is expected to be closer to $190,000.
"These courageous men and their families, who in the face of great adversity took on the NFL, have made history," Seeger said. "Despite the difficult health situations retired players face today, and that many more will unfortunately face in the future, they can take comfort in the fact that this settlement's significant and immediate benefits will finally become available to them and last for decades to come."
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