Sports accidents are almost always unintended and are usually accidental. No one ever steps onto a baseball field or basketball court intending to get injured or cause injury to another player. A dad who takes his son or daughter to a Little League baseball game hardly expects that his child will get injured when playing. However, sports injuries do in fact occur and while the majority of them will be minor, some will be serious enough to warrant surgery and other invasive treatment. In some cases, the injury will be so serious that the player will suffer permanent injury, such as a serious head or brain injury. Read more about head injuries and sports accidents.
Whether it's a child playing a contact sport like wrestling or an adult on a community league team, injuries in sports are very common and are a generally accepted risk of playing sports. However, there are some accidents and injuries which simply cannot be anticipated. For instance, in a youth baseball game or practice, a child who trips over a large hole in the outfield and breaks their ankle while running to catch a ball cannot be said to have anticipated the risk of injury. Negligence in this instance may be attributed to the community league, the owner of the baseball field and/or any field maintenance company.
In most cases involving a sports accident, if the injury occurs during normal play, a valid legal claim for negligence is unlikely. In some instances, there may be a legal claim, especially when children are involved. A common, actionable claim involving children who are injured during normal play or practice is negligent coaching or mismatching skills of the players. If this results in injury to a child or minor, Pennsylvania law may allow the injured player to receive financial compensation for pain and suffering as well as medical bills and other economic losses.
However, for adults, getting injured during routine play or practice is not likely to be actionable, unless the fall occurred due to an unforeseen act of negligence. For instance, if a leak in the roof causes water to accumulate on the basketball court and results in a player slipping and falling, the basketball court facility may be liable for the accident. In ordinary circumstances, a basketball player who is pushed during normal play and falls is unlikely to be able to recover for their injuries in a tort or negligence lawsuit.
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If you were injured in a sports accident, contact one of our PA or NJ sports accident lawyers to discuss your accident. Call us at 877.944.8396, and we will answer your questions. We also offer a free, no obligation consultation.