Friday Night Rights: Greenwich Soccer Injury Suit

Thanks to Jason Wolf’s Sports Agent & Sports Lawyer blog , I came across a sports litigation issue right in our backyard.  Greenwich parents Mark and Roseanne Sanford brought suit against the Town of Greenwich in 2005, after their son was injured while playing soccer at Central Middle School.  The son was injured after stepping in an alleged hidden pothole on the field, causing serious ankle and leg injuries.  The lawsuit, filed in Stamford Superior Court, has been scheduled for trial in February 2011.

Essentially, this is a typical personal injury matter.  However, it is possible that the plaintiffs may attempt to use the sports angle to increase the value of the case.  According to the Connecticut Post, the plaintiffs have voiced concerns that their son may be unable to compete at the collegiate level due to his injuries.

A claim that the plaintiffs son has lost an opportunity to compete at the collegiate level involves significant legal hurdles. Certainly their plaintiffs can demonstrate the out-of-pocket medical expenses.  But establishing liability and damages should the son be unable to play in college could prove difficult for the following reasons:

  1. The plaintiffs would be required to prove that their son’s injury, and not a lack of skill or desire, was the direct cause of his inability to play collegiate soccer;
  2. The plaintiffs may need expert witness testimony to establish that their son, but for the injury, possessed the requisite skills to play at the collegiate level; and
  3. The plaintiffs would be required to prove damages to a reasonable degree of certainty.  Unless their son was destined for a professional career, quantifying the monetary value of his loss might be difficult.

Although this case appears to be a typical personal injury matter, the sports element certainly may alter both the value of the claim and the burden of proof.

Trackbacks

  1. […] final note.  Check out this story at CTsportslaw.com about a lawsuit in Greenwich, CT brought by parents of a youth soccer player who was injured while […]

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