Should student-athletes be allowed to join a union?

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Michigan Legislature passes ban on union membership for student-athletes but misses the real issue regarding workers’ compensation.

The Detroit Free Press has reported that legislation banning student-athletes from joining unions is now on its way to Governor Snyder. We have taken a special interest in this topic because student-athletes are not considered employees for purposes of workers’ compensation.

Most college scholarships last for just one year and the university can opt not to renew. In addition, student-athletes can be personally liable for medical bills over the long term. Union membership might have changed these facts.

The debate about union membership for student-athletes is not new. The Atlantic published a fascinating article in 2011 about the history of the NCAA and the myth of the student-athlete. The origin of the term to help the NCAA fight against workers’ compensation claims for injured football players.

Arguments about protecting the integrity of the game are hard to swallow when big time TV deals and corporate endorsements are the norm. While union membership might not be the answer, there is certainly room for compromise.

We had previously suggested that a pooled workers’ compensation fund be created. All NCAA affiliated universities and colleges must contribute based upon the amount of revenue generated each year by student-athletes. Michigan workers’ compensation law would govern the payment of benefits just like professional athletes. If a scholarship is lost, the fund would step in so the student-athlete could complete his or her education. Medical benefits would be paid for life.

Want to sound off on this controversial issue? Leave a comment below.

Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation today.

Related information:

Michigan Legislature – House Bill 6074 (2014)

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by timtak.

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Author Bio Jeffrey Kaufman

Author
Jeffrey E. Kaufman
Michigan Workers Comp Attorney

Jeffrey E. Kaufman has extensive experience in workers compensation cases and has recovered millions of dollars in benefits for his clients. He believes all injured workers deserve to be on equal footing with insurance companies and employers, and fights tenaciously so their rights are secured and protected.


“Jeff also helped me with getting my Blue Cross bills paid. I would absolutely recommend him and the whole firm. Jeff and the firm did everything they were supposed to do for me and my case.”
Ricardo Perfetto

Hundreds of 5-Star Reviews

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Get Help From our Michigan Workers’ Comp Lawyers Today

You’re not alone. Our Michigan workers’ comp lawyers have been called the best in the state, and our clients love how they’re treated with care, respect, and responsiveness. We will give you the time you need, we will explain your legal rights, and we will always treat you with respect.

Our workers’ compensation and Social Security disability lawyers always put your needs first. Get to know your legal team.

Our attorneys post regularly about common issues related to workers’ comp, including common injuries, settlement calculations, laws, and more.

Injured? It’s Time to Get Some Answers

Don’t let the insurance adjuster push you around. Request your free consultation today.

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This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Our attorneys post regularly about common issues related to workers’ comp, including common injuries, settlement calculations, laws, and more.

Our workers’ compensation and Social Security disability lawyers always put your needs first. Get to know your legal team.