SBD/June 28, 2012/Leagues and Governing Bodies

Super Bowl Ticket Holders Claim Mediation Failed, But NFL Calls Motion "Frivolous"

An attorney for Super Bowl ticket holders suing the NFL over the '11 seating problems at the Dallas game told a federal judge mediation has failed. Some of the lawsuit already has been dismissed and many ticket holders accepted the NFL’s offer of compensation. The NFL and lawyers for the ticket holders still suing engaged in mediation earlier this month, and according to a motion filed earlier this week, the NFL negotiated in bad faith. “Plaintiffs intend to provide direct evidence of Defendants' outright bad faith to this Court at the time of hearing for The Court's consideration,” the motion said. The NFL responded in a statement to SportsBusiness Journal, “This motion is frivolous. The overwhelming majority of the claims were resolved more than a year ago. At the plaintiffs’ counsel’s request, we agreed to participate in a mediation to determine whether there was a reasonable basis to resolve what remains of the suit following our successful voluntary reimbursement program with fans. The mediation regrettably was not successful, but we acted with good faith in the process. We are disappointed the plaintiffs' attorneys would resort to filing a baseless motion.” The motion does not lay out the NFL's alleged bad faith. A lawyer for the ticket holders, Michael Avenatti, said he could not describe the alleged behavior without court approval. Super Bowl XLV in '11 was plagued by seating issues, including temporary seats that were not ready for the game.
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