CTE Compared to Asbestos Claims – NY Court

A New York Court issued a very favorable ruling on behalf of the family of a deceased NFL player, that has important implications for plaintiffs pursuing CTE claims. Read the Opinion Here

“This type of latent disease is comparable to asbestos cases where the injury occurred outside of the statute of limitations period, however, the manifestation of the disease or illness is not developed or detected until years layer. If plaintiff was suffering from a latent condition, and the ability to diagnose the condition is not available until the death of the injured party, then under the discovery rule the cause of action arises upon the discovery of the latent disease, i.e., at the time an autopsy is performed.”

 

This is substantially similar to the arguments advanced by the WWE wrestlers.

Wrestlers File Motion to Unseal Triple H, Stephanie McMahon and Vince McMahon’s Depositions

The plaintiffs filed this motion to unseal and make available to the public the testimony given by WWE officers in the Singleton/LoGrasso lawsuit. The argue: “There is no question that the deposition of a Defendant in this matter, Vincent K. McMahon, and the depositions of Paul Levesque, as WWE’s corporate representative, and Stephanie McMahon, WWE executive, are judicial records favoring a presumption of public access.

Konstantine Kyros: Q&A on the WWE RICO Lawsuit (Laurinaitis Versus WWE)

I invite wrestlers and their families, media, wrestling fans and people interested in the plight of the wrestlers and the fight for their rights to submit questions about their legal claims. Here are some questions and anwers I have collected.

1) Q: Why do you think this lawsuit will be more successful than your previous ones against the WWE? (posted by German Journalist Guillaume Horst from Der Spiegel)

A: This latest case is the result of an extensive investigation into the policies and practices of the WWE which has revealed a systematic exploitative business practice which use unconscionable booking contracts to deceive the wrestlers about their legal rights- which deprived them of the legal protections that are given to US workers under federal labor and employment laws. Without these protections which were enacted to protect workers health and safety, the wrestler after retirement are now in a health crisis with many disabled because of they wrestling careers. Also note that the wrestlers are, per the plaintiffs allegations, misclassified as independent contractors, deprived of statutory rights and OSHA regulation further eroding a defense by WWE as compared to other contact sports in which there is an employment relationship, unionization, regulation and public oversight of the activities that may result in injury. A quick review of the plaintiffs factual allegations in the complaint reveals where they are now (broken in body and mind, many now disabled) graphically showing the outcome of the unregulated regime that WWE has maintained over these athletes.

2) Q: Have all the plaintiffs suffered head injuries in the course of their careers? Or are they suing because of other injuries as well? (posted by German Journalist Guillaume Horst from Der Spiegel)
A: The plaintiffs allege head injuries in two forms: 1) Open and obvious concussions that WWE failed to adequately treat and diagnose as well as 2) long term effects and risks of repeated head trauma that can cause an occupational disease  like CTE that a wrestler would not know about unless educated by a doctor or WWE. Thus the wrestling match in ring activity itself (the routine, ordinary bumps and maneuvers) as well as the so called “accidental” incidents that often result in concussion cause latent, unseen and long term harm that results in damages to the plaintiffs. That physical activity itself which during its routine performance is causing unseen harm for which there is a duty to warn, the same is true in other contact sports Such as the NFL, and NHL in which routine head trauma also appears to result in CTE and latent occupational neurological disease.

Wrestling 101

fall-guys

Fall Guys: the Barnums of Bounce (Marcus Griffin, Reilly & Lee 1937)

“‘Working’ was the term used to denote two wrestlers putting on a show for the crowd with the result determined beforehand…..’Heat’ meant getting the fans excited… The organization left nothing to chance” p. 52″

Launch of WWE Concussion Lawsuits

I am starting this as a tool to reach out directly to people interested in the WWE concussion lawsuits that we have filed. As of October 2015, it has been a year since our first case was filed on behalf of Billy Jack Haynes against the WWE. That case along with 5 others is currently pending in Federal Court in Connecticut.

Two of the filed cases are class actions (Haynes case and one headed by three wrestlers Russ McCullough, Ryan Sakoda and Matt Wiese) that seek a declaration of judgment against the WWE and seek medical monitoring for the injured class members. Another case is pending on behalf of two individual wrestlers (Vito LoGrasso and Evan Singleton) who claim brain injuries from their wrestling careers. The two remaining cases are wrongful death cases filed on behalf of the surviving families of Nelson Frazier, Jr and Matt Osborne. Additionally there is a lawsuit that was filed by the WWE against four wrestlers: Robert Windham (Blackjack Mulligan), Ivan Koloff, Koko B Ware and Thomas Billington (Dynamite Kid). The WWE’s case seeks a declaration that these injured men cannot bring cases at all because it is too late.

The developments in these cases in the coming weeks and months will impact the legal rights of all former and current WWE/WWF/WWWF performers and their families. The purpose of this site is to inform thoese interested in the latest events in the lawsuits as well as communicate with people that may have information to share. We are always interested in speaking to people who worked with wrestlers, worked with WWF, have knowledge of the working conditions and medical care at matches- especially before 2006. Call 1-800-934-2921 or email kon @ kyroslaw.com

Our goal is to help get ongoing healthcare and compensation for wrestlers who sustained brain damage and neurological injuries. There are too many disabled wrestlers for the courts and public to ignore their plight. The moment to act has come for these men and women.

-Konstantine Kyros