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Thread: NFL player union

  1. #10
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    Default Re: NFL player union

    Maybe the union should go put a get a Health care plan of their own just like any other business.

    I'm guessing that's how it is. Just a point of clarification: the union is the health plan--they've established one by virtue of offering health benefits--the legal term is an "employee welfare benefit plan" under the federal law ERISA. Then, like any other union, or employer, they can buy health insurance, or self-fund their plan.

    I mean these guys are making a ton of money. Mandate a small percentage go to a health care plan. Isn't that part of being in a Union?

    It wouldn't surprise me this is how it's already done.

  2. #11
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    Default Re: NFL player union

    Ugly's latest msg, puts a different spin on it. So the old-timers were not in the union, but the union is being asked to pay for their health care? Huh? How about the owners?

  3. #12
    Super Moderator UGLY's Avatar
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    Default Re: NFL player union

    Here is the point to me Clone, the players union spends 20,000,000 dollars a year fighting disability claims from former players. If they would cut down the buraracy and just help the player who need it then I would say they save money and still do the right thing. What is the point of denying medical compensation to players who were injured building the league.

  4. #13
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    Default Re: NFL player union

    Ugly, I agree with your sentiment. I'm just having trouble with the facts. You said the players were not part of the union, but then you say the union is fighting their claims--in other words, the union must have taken on an obligation to pay claims for the ex-players at some point.

    As to your argument that they spend all this money fighting claims when they could just pay them, well, that's valid, but that's the story of many employers and unions and why insurance defense is big business for lawyers in insurance towns like Des Moines. 20 million seems extraordinarly high, but maybe the potential health claims amount to that much or more. But I agree, they should take care of their players.

  5. #14

    Default Re: NFL player union

    I don't think most of these players played at a time when their was a players union. I puts both parties in a very tough situation. The NFL should pony up in some way.

    Design some old timer Jerseys and sell them to help fund this project. I'd love to have a Larry Czonka or Ditka Jersey. I'd pay if part of the money went to help the old timers.

    I will edit this by saying the union was formed in 1956.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Football_League_Players'_Association

  6. #15
    Olympic Champ RYou's Avatar
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    Default Re: NFL player union

    At first my thought was...

    well everyone else is having their medical benefits eroded, no different for the NFL retirees. Heck, my company just eliminated funding retirement medical care, post-65 when medicare kicks in. At least the NFL funds medical benefits after age 65, something most everyone will not have down the road.

    Then it occurred to me that many of these disabilities were result from playing the sport - an occupational hazard. Since players are under contract, they are not afforded workers' comp benefits like other employees, including other high hazard occupations like the police or firemen.

    That is where the difference lies, much of this is occupational, though no one has connected Alzheimers to concussions as yet. I believe that is also where the NFL has some objection to claims made by the players; non-occupational maladies.

    So the quesion is, should the NFL be funding the non-occupational injury health care for the players? While there a billions floating around because of television, should the owners business be funding non-occupational medical care that most other businesses do not fund for the average Joe? Occupation Inujury maladies, no question about it, but non-occupational healthcare, I'm not so sure. The NFL just agreed to fund $88,000 per year for retired players if they need nursing care out of the home and $50,000 annually should the player opt for in-home nursing care. It's not like the NFL is ignoring the issue. but heck my employer isn't going to pay for that nursing care if I need in retirement.

    Just goes to show you the power of a union.....when the business is financially sound.

  7. #16
    Redshirt Sean's Avatar
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    Default Re: NFL player union

    Ryou, I'm pretty sure that they are eligible for worker's comp when they are injured. I remember watching the Hark Knocks HBO series on the Cowboys a few years ago. They showed Emmitt checking in to training camp and one of the questions he was asked was whether he would prefer to collect worker's comp if he was injured or if he would like to continue being paid his usual salary. Obviously he chose the later.

    Also, I agree that the NFL/player's union has some responsibility to assist with medical care provided that there is enough proof that their condition is related to their playing days. As far as raising the pension, I do not think that the NFL or the union has any responsibility to help out former players who got themselves in financial trouble by being careless, making bad investments, etc.

  8. #17
    Olympic Champ RYou's Avatar
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    Default Re: NFL player union

    Well, it actually depends on the state. Most do not accept a pro athlete's injury as work comp although Texas is one that does. Cali, Florida, NY and NJ, etc. do not.

    The player's contract take precidence over workers' comp. Even in Texas, the player will continue to receive his contract pay, though the team may collect a work comp check as an offset.

    Every player contract contains an agreement that pay continues in the event of disabling injury that occuring as part of the team, be it in a game, practice traveling with the ball club or in the lockerroom. The contract does not usually pay in the event the injury occurs off the field as in Roethlisberger's motorcycle accident, though some top tier players negotiate for that benefit.

    The teams purchase disability insurance to fund the value of the contract in the event of permanent disability.

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