NFL concussion payments can now begin after Supreme court rules out a review of the case

The decision ends a five year wait for a conclusion to the case

NFL concussion payments can now begin after Supreme court rules out a review of the case

Soldier Field, Chicago Image: ©INPHO/Photosport/Andrew Cornaga

The Supreme Court in the United States on Monday ruled out a review of the NFL's settlement with former players who accused the league of downplaying the dangers of head trauma within the sport.

The New York Times is reporting that the decision ends five years of wrangling between the two sides and payments to retired players who are suffering from concussion-related illnesses may now be compensated.

Christopher Seeger, a lawyer for the players said in a statement: "This decision means that, finally, retired N.F.L. players will receive much-needed care and support for the serious neurocognitive injuries they are facing. These courageous men and their families, who in the face of great adversity took on the N.F.L., have made history.”

The issue was brought to light in the PBS documentary "League of Denial - The NFL's Concussion Crisis" and later in the Will Smith fronted "Concussion" which chronicled Dr. Bennet Omalu's struggles to convince the establishment of the link between American Football and brain injuries.   

Former NFL players have fought a long battle with the league over compensation after many players developed brain conditions and associated illnesses.

The NFL eventually agreed to creat a fund to cater for these players but the amount that should be payed has been in dispute for quite some time.

The New York Times is reporting that the "settlement, worth perhaps as much as $1 billion, covers nearly every former player for the next 65 years."