Minnesota’s personal injury law states that if another party is at least partially responsible for an injury that you suffered, you may be eligible for compensation. That being said, it’s not a one-size-fits-all law, and there are plenty of gray areas when it comes to personal injury compensation. One such area that is often draws many questions is athletics and injuries during sporting activities.
If you are injured by another person during a sporting event, are you able to take them to court for compensation, or are injuries just considered part of the game? We take a closer look at Minnesota sports injuries and your right to compensation in this blog.
Compensation For Injuries During Sports
When it comes to injuries during recreational sports, oftentimes these injuries are simply considered a potential aspect of the activity, and therefore even if another party contributed to your injury, you won’t be able to earn compensation. However, that hasn’t stopped athletes from attempting to pursue compensation. Recently, a baseball player in New Jersey attempted to sue his coach after his coach directed him to slide into third base on a close play. As the player’s lawsuit read,
“During the course of the aforedescribed baseball game, [the defendant] negligently and carelessly instructed, directed or otherwise cause [the plaintiff] to slide resulting in the personal and permanent injuries hereinafter described.”
Although the plaintiff needed surgery to fix his ankle, and his coach technically played a role in the player’s decision to slide and ultimately injure his foot, the case was quickly dismissed by the court. They deemed that the coach’s actions were not reckless, and the injuries were not intentional, therefore the player was not eligible for injury compensation.
Reckless and Intentional Sports Injuries
Based on what the court ruled in the above scenario, one could infer that should the court find that the actions were reckless or the injuries were caused intentionally, an athlete could be eligible for compensation. Again, it’s not cut and dry, but there are scenarios where you may be eligible for sporting-related injury compensation from the at-fault party.
In general, the court is likely to rule that the injury was part of the game if it happened during the normal course of athletic action. Even if that slide tackle was “cheap” or that low tackle broke your femur, these actions are likely to be considered a known risk during athletic activity. However, if there exists extreme negligence or direct intent to injure, you can seek compensation. We’ll give some examples of each below.
- During a soccer game, a player, upset with a call, punches the referee in the face. The ref would be able to seek injury compensation.
- A pool manager mixed the wrong chemicals when attempting to sanitize their pool, and athletes participating in a swim meet suffered eye injuries as a result of the chemical exposure.
- A hunter participating in a group hunt shoots at a moving object at dusk without confirming what he’s shooting at, and he ends up shooting another hunter in the arm. The injured hunter could pursue compensation.
- A hockey player, frustrated with another player, swings their stick at another player’s head when they are not looking, resulting in severe facial injuries. If the court rules that it was intentional and not a sporting action, the assaulting player could be sued.
These are just a few examples of situations where a person may be able to pursue compensation for injuries suffered during athletic activities, but these are by no means the only ways in which you would be eligible for an award. If you believe that your sports injury was a result of preventable negligence or intentional injury, reach out to Hey Workers today to learn how we can pursue a compensation claim on your behalf.