Jury awards $11.5M to family in helmet lawsuit

Tennessee teenagers and teenagers all across the United States are involved in sports such as football each day. According to the Center for Disease Control, there are 300,000 sports-related concussions in the United States each year; most occur in contact sports, such as football, soccer, baseball, boxing and hockey. Also, in football, brain injuries account for sixty-five to eighty-five percent of fatalities. Football related concussions can lead to serious and even life-altering brain injuries or even death for teenagers all across the country. If you or someone you love has suffered a brain injury after playing a contact sport such as football, it is highly recommended that you speak with a Tennessee products liability lawyer as soon as possible. They will work with you and make sure you get the compensation you may be entitled to for the injuries you or your family members have suffered.

In this case, Rhett Ridolfi’s family filed a lawsuit against helmet maker Riddell and several high school administrators and football coaches after Ridolfi suffered a concussion in a Trinidad High School football practice. He wasn’t immediately taken to the hospital and now has severe brain damage, as well as paralysis on his left side. The jury found that Riddell was negligent in failing to warn people wearing its helmets about concussion dangers. The jury assessed twenty-seven percent of the fault for Rhett Ridolfi’s injuries, making the company responsible for paying $3.1 million of the damages.

The jury awarded $11.5 million total in the lawsuit to Ridolfi’s family. The ruling comes as the company faces a similar lawsuit in Los Angeles, plus a complaint by thousands of former NFL players against the league and Riddell. Riddell said it planned to appeal the verdict but was pleased that jurors rejected allegations regarding helmet design defects.”While disappointed in the jury’s decision not to fully exonerate Riddell, we are pleased the jury determined that Riddell’s helmet was not defective in any way,” the company said in a statement. It said it believes it designs and manufactures the most protective football headgear for athletes.

Three people reached confidential settlements before Saturday’s verdict, but two coaches were still defendants at the trial. In October, another jury found Riddell wasn’t responsible for an injury to a high school football player who had suffered a stroke after a practice.

The CDC states that head injuries are the leading cause of death in young adults and children and more than 80,000 of the brain injuries sustain permanent, irreversible damage. Tennessee teenagers playing contact sports such as football can suffer a life-changing head injury if the proper precautions are not taken or if helmet-makers such as Riddell fail to tell people about the concussion dangers and risks they may be faced with from their head gear. If someone you care about has suffered a brain injury or has brain damage due to the negligence of a sports equipment company, then you should contact our firm of knowledgeable and compassionate Tennessee personal injury attorneys. We will hear your claim, review your medical documents, and work with you to help you receive the compensation you may be eligible for because of the injuries you or someone you care about has sustained.

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