Professional Athlete Forced into Retirement Because of a Concussion Claims Lawyers Sabotaged Medical Malpractice Lawsuit

Professional Athlete Forced into Retirement Because of a Concussion Claims Lawyers Sabotaged Medical Malpractice Lawsuit

Bryan Namoff played for D.C. United, a Major League Soccer club, for nine years. He was a fan favorite and one of the best defenders in the league. But in a September 2009 match against Kansas City, his life changed forever on a routine header. When he went up to head the ball a player on the other team violently collided into him with his shoulder. The hit caused Namoff to suffer a concussion. In a dismissed 2012 lawsuit against his former club, Namoff alleged that team doctors did not properly treat his concussion. In addition, three days later he was cleared to play in what would end up being the last game of his career.

Namoff, now 37, has filed a new lawsuit. This one is against his former lawyers, who he claims coerced him into signing off on papers that ended the lawsuit without a settlement or a trial by jury due to his own lawyer’s negligence. The lawsuit, filed last month in U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia, claims that his lawyers had made egregious missteps during the discovery process that cost him the case and any potential settlement. Namoff alleges that his former lawyers did not turn over pertinent emails and medical reports and then tried to cover up their mistakes. The lawyers also allegedly told him that the case was a lost cause because of his mistakes, not theirs, and he would end up being fined $700,000 if he did not end the litigation.

The new suit contends that the lawyers “knew if Mr. Namoff defended the sanctions motion, the attorneys’ own mistakes, which were likely indefensible, would be brought to light.” The complaint goes on to say that the lawyers “sought to avoid the potentially substantial financial sanctions and damage to their professional reputations that would almost certainly ensue if their incompetence in handling Namoff’s case was revealed.”

Namoff originally sued D.C. United for $12 million for their alleged medical negligence and the impact on his career and his marriage. In the latest lawsuit he is seeking to recover the $126,000 he paid to his former lawyers and for punitive damages.

“Every minute of every day, I have a headache,” said Namoff. “It’s like an invisible nightmare.”


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