SACRAMENTO — Months of heavy lobbying by the National Football League and other professional sports team owners paid off when lawmakers gave final passage to a bill to limit most workers' compensation claims by out-of-state professional athletes.
The bill, AB 1309 by Assemblyman
Last week, the measure received an overwhelming endorsement in the state Senate with a 34-2 vote.
Perea's proposal, which was opposed by the NFL Players' Assn. and the
Many of those players may have participated in just a handful of games in California over the course of their careers.
During the bill's eight-month transit through the Legislature, team owners argued that California had become a de facto forum for claims filed against football, baseball, basketball, hockey and soccer franchises and their insurance companies.
Players unions countered that the employers don't want to be responsible for their former workers' head injuries and other ailments.
Former athletes have filed more than 4,400 claims involving head and brain injuries since 2006, according to the state workers' compensation court records.
The governor has until Oct. 13 to sign or veto the bill.