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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 02:50pm
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Whats the world comming to?

I was working a high school AAU game this past weekend and 10 minutes into the game one kid pushed an opposing player to the floor, stood over him and pounded his face to a bloody pulp as he (the opposing player) was on his hands and knees. I was the trail offical in the back court and it happen in the front court opposite side of my lead. Before we could get there the kid was KO'ed. The coach ran on the court calling for someone to call the police, players squared off and spectators came down to the floor. Not much I thought I could do at that moment but we both tried to calm everyone down. The player(the beater) and one of the coaches for his team hurried him out of the gym before the cops got there. The weirdest thing was there was no indication of any problem before that point. No trash talking, no roughness and not any controversy. The kid was takin away in a ambulance and I found out the next day he had to have surjury to reconstruct his cheek bone and he had a dislocated jaw. I think I may end up in court on this one.

I see fights in NBA games sometimes on TV were guys get suspended for 10 or 20 games but if you saw how bad this kid beat the other one, if it was in the NBA I bet he would be suspended for life.

Whats the world comming to?
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 02:59pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philz
I think I may end up in court on this one.
You need to get a written report in to whoever assigned you to this game now. Immediately. Someone is gonna sue on behalf of the injured player, and if and when they do, they will name everybody involved, including the officials.

It's CYA time.
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 03:21pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jurassic Referee
Someone is gonna sue on behalf of the injured player, and if and when they do, they will name everybody involved, including the officials.

I'm sure it varies by state, but what does the law say about this as far as an official being liable in a case like this?
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 03:27pm
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Originally Posted by just another ref
I'm sure it varies by state, but what does the law say about this as far as an official being liable in a case like this?
I don't have a clue. I do know though that in cases like this, everybody in the gym will get named in a suit. Frivolous or not, you gotta defend yourself too. Btw, most sports insurance plans do cover lawyer fees if you're being sued on related activities.
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 03:47pm
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Is the video on youtube yet? Surely it's out there.
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 03:53pm
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A NASO membership might be nice right about now, n'est pas?
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 04:21pm
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I wrote no statement and I have no insurrance.....Is it too late to get insurance knowing now that I could be involved in a law suit?
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 04:27pm
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Probably too late.....Two things to consider....Are you a member of an association? Are you certified for high school through NFHS? If so, one of those things may have some coverage backing you that you don't know about.
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 04:35pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philz
I wrote no statement and I have no insurrance.....Is it too late to get insurance knowing now that I could be involved in a law suit?
It's highly unlikely that any insurance you buy from today forward would cover you for an incident that happened in the past. You still may be able to obtain liability coverage for the future, but YMMV.

Even though you haven't written a statement yet, though, doesn't mean you can't now. Write down exactly what happened, and exactly what you and your partner did. If you have an assignor or board commissioner, you may want to send him/her a copy.
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 04:53pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philz
I wrote no statement and I have no insurrance.....Is it too late to get insurance knowing now that I could be involved in a law suit?
As stated, check to see if your association has blanket coverage. Also check with whoever paid you for those AAU games as to whether they carried insurance. Their coverage might also cover you.

And get a report in. I'm kinda surprised that the police haven't contacted you already. That sounds like a felony assault of some kind.
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 06:34pm
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Written reports are considered legal documents. So they can and have been used for court cases.

Not sure how any of this has to do with the NBA. The NBA rarely even has a fight as compared to most sports.

Peace
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 06:38pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRutledge
Written reports are considered legal documents. So they can and have been used for court cases.

Not sure how any of this has to do with the NBA. The NBA rarely even has a fight as compared to most sports.

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Because the consequences are so severe; as opposed to other sports.
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 06:51pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRutledge
Written reports are considered legal documents. So they can and have been used for court cases.
Actually this is a great point.

If you're really concerned you might get sued speak to a lawyer before saying or writing anything to anyone else.

Since this was an aau game there's no report required. If I were you I would get with my partner and write down anything and everything possible about the game and file it away just in case. Then I would talk to the tournament director and my local association to see what kind of liability insurance I actually have. Then I would forget about it.

Oh yeah, you definitely should carry some type of your own liability insurance.
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 08:06pm
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I just received the current NFHS newsletter. In this publication there is an article about legal issues. I can not give any details because I just flipped through the pages. I was just glancing at the title of the articles. I was surprised that the new basketball rules were not listed. Oh well..... have to wait for the next issue.
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Old Wed May 16, 2007, 09:23pm
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Quote:
Written reports are considered legal documents. So they can and have been used for court cases.
Well, I wouldn't call them legal documents like I would, say, contracts or court documents, but reports ARE discoverable. The absolute best thing to do if you are worried about information coming out is to talk to a lawyer and let him write everything down. The other side for sure can't get to that based on the attorney client (and likely work product) privileges.

I highly doubt you'll get sued. Its likely they won't be able to find out who you are by the time the attorney gets around to filing this thing, if that happens at all. Even if they do know who you are, if you are uninsured, they probably won't mess with it. Your share of the negligence as it relates to the total event is so small, it wouldn't amount to much -- and that assumes you were even negligent at all, which I doubt.

Not to get into a legal discussion, especially since state law varies, but negligence, which is what you'd get sued based on, requires 4 elements: duty, breach of the duty, cause, and harm. Sometimes the last 2 elements are merged together (as they are in Texas). All elements must be proved or the case falls. I personally don't believe an official has a duty to prevent an unprovoked violent attack by one player on another, especially given that there was no forewarning or previous similar behavior. Without a duty, there's no negligence and no case.

Guys, the areas where we can get ourselves in big trouble are: playing on unplayable fields, courts, or conditions, AND attempting or preventing needed medical attention. Stay away from screwing around in those areas, and you'll probably stay lawsuit free.
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