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SBD/December 11, 2012/Leagues and Governing Bodies
NFL, Insurers Argue Over Payment Obligations; Concussion Lawsuits Could Push Up Premiums
Published December 11, 2012
LEAGUE TO APPEAL COURT'S STAY: The NFL plans to appeal a California court’s decision to stay the league’s lawsuit against dozens of its insurers. The insurers are seeking exemption from providing coverage in the event the league loses lawsuits filed by former players over the long-term damage playing the game allegedly had on their health. A California Superior Court judge late last month stayed the lawsuit, saying one brought by the insurers against the NFL in N.Y. should take precedence. The NFL last week filed a notice of appeal to the California Supreme Court, seeking expedited review, according to a letter sent by the NFL’s outside counsel to the judge overseeing the N.Y. case. The lawyer, William Phillips of Covington Burling, wrote the letter to affirm that notwithstanding the California decision, the NFL still sought the dismissal of the N.Y. lawsuit brought by the insurers against the league. “If the NFL defendants’ motions to dismiss in New York are granted in whole or in part on jurisdictional and other grounds available under New York law, then the California’s court premise that the New York and California cases are equally comprehensive -- with which we disagree on various grounds -- would become inoperative,” Phillips wrote to Judge Jeffrey Oing of the Supreme Court of the State of New York (Daniel Kaplan, SportsBusiness Journal).