Visitor Question

Accidental Hit in Head with Football…

Submitted By: Brian (Detroit Lakes, Minnesota)

We were playing football. The person who was supposed to catch the ball turned her head and didn’t see the ball coming. She was hit in the head with the football and was injured. She had to get medical treatment and now she’s threatening to sue me for her doctor bill. Can she do this? Am I liable for her injuries? Thanks.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.


Dear Brian,

Because the woman volunteered to play she “assumed the reasonable risks” of playing football. Getting hit in the face with a football is a reasonable risk one assumes when volunteering to play. As a result you really aren’t liable for the woman’s injuries.

If the injury occurred at your home and you served alcohol to the woman to the point of her intoxication there is a remote chance you might be liable.

If the injury occurred on your property the woman can file a claim against your homeowners policy. She can file under the med-pay section of the policy. If she does she can collect up to a thousand dollars for her medical bills, and can do so without having to prove negligence.

In the alternative, if the woman wants to claim compensation for more than a thousand dollars she’ll have to file under the personal liability section of your policy. To succeed, she’ll have to show you were negligent. From the facts you present you were not negligent.

Either way, it seems you don’t have anything to worry about.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: May 30, 2013

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