Your Rights to Compensation for Sports Injuries
People injured playing sports have a number of avenues to seek compensation.
Whether you're a professional sportsperson, or just get together with friends to play in an organised competition, if you've been injurted while competing you may be entitled to compensation.
If you have been seriously and permanently injured but nobody was at fault you may be able to lodge a claim for compensation under the NSW Sporting Injuries Insurance Scheme.
To be eligible, your sport's organiser must have a policy under the scheme to cover its participants. The application process is quite straightforward and does not require legal advice. As such, we recommend that you enquire with your sport's organiser to establish whether they are insured under the scheme. For more information on NSW sporting injury benefits and entitlements visit sportinginjuries.nsw.gov.au or call (02) 4321 5392.
Alternatively, if you have been injured as a result of another person's carelessness, the law recognises that sportspeople owe a “reasonable standard of care” to their fellow competitors and may provide a remedy.
Courts will generally raise or lower the “reasonable standard” to be applied in direct proportion to the person's level of skill and experience in that sport. This means that a higher degree of care is required from top level players than from beginners to the sport in question.
Generally, an occupier of a sporting ground will also owe a reasonable standard of care, and may be held responsible for your injury if they could have taken positive steps to prevent it, but failed to.
Courts have also held perpetrators of intentional foul play outside the rules of a sport to be liable for injuring their opponents.
In such cases, Courts take special notice of the rules of the sport because there is an assumption that sportspeople consent to interferences that are ordinarily within the rules or spirit of the game.
For example, even where body contact is a part of a game, as it is in most codes of football, deliberately striking another person while tackling may lead to liability for any injuries caused by that blow.
There are a number of important limitations to the rules governing negligence and trespass. So, if you have been injured while competing in a sporting event and it has caused you to miss work or resulted in other financial loss. You can contact us. We'll be able to help you via a quick phone call, ask us a question via email.