SBD/February 16, 2011/Leagues and Governing Bodies

NFL's Latest Offer To Displaced Super Bowl Fans Includes Reimbursement For Expenses

NFL extends reimbursement offer after commissioner's conversations with fans
NFL VP/Communications Brian McCarthy yesterday said that the league e-mailed the 400 fans "displaced by problems with temporary seats" at Super Bowl XLV "to offer either $5,000 or reimbursement for 'actual documented' Super Bowl expenses, whichever figure is higher," according to the AP. The latest offer is the "third and most valuable option for fans who had tickets but no seats" for the game. McCarthy in an e-mail said that the NFL "decided to extend another offer after commissioner Roger Goodell talked to fans over the past week." The initial offer was "for $2,400 -- three times the face value of the affected seats -- and a ticket to next year's Super Bowl." The league "soon added a second option of a ticket to any future Super Bowl plus airfare and hotel costs" (AP, 2/15). L.A.-based attorney Michael Avenatti, who is the lead attorney in a class-action suit against the NFL and the Cowboys over the seating debacle, said that his firm currently represents over 100 people. Avenatti: "Ultimately, we expect the class to be somewhere in the neighborhood of 2,500 fans." He added, "We do want to get a resolution before this becomes full-blown litigation. My clients and all of the fans are incredibly reasonable. They merely want 100 cents on the dollar back for whatever they spent to attend the Super Bowl. Whatever they paid for their tickets, plus their expenses. And in addition, the league needs to step up and provide some other compensation, whether it be future Super Bowl tickets or something of that nature. No one's trying to get rich from this" (Fox Business, 2/15). Dallas-based attorney Trey Branham, who also represents some ticket holders, said that the NFL is "gradually moving in the right direction" with its offers to fans, "but hasn't gotten there yet" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 2/16).
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