sports injury

Most sports involve some risk of injury and in certain sports, like rugby, soccer, cricket, hockey and biking, injuries such as broken bones, head trauma and torn ligaments are especially common.

When individuals voluntarily engage in sport, particularly contact sport, this typically involves legal “assumption of risk” – meaning that by willingly participating in a sport, you accept the associated potential for bodily harm.

However, if a sports injury is caused by negligence or wrongdoing on the part of another party, such as a fellow player, a referee, game organisers, or the owner of sports grounds, you may be entitled to claim compensation. This includes compensation for medical expenses, associated loss of income and pain and suffering.

Types of sports injuries

Any part of the body can sustain injury during physical activity. However, the most common sports injuries are those affecting the musculoskeletal system, which includes the bones, muscles, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, joints, and other connective tissue.

These injuries include shin splints, fractures, broken bones, head injuries, dislocation of joints, torn ligaments and knee, elbow and ankle injuries.

Who can claim for a sports injury?

Both sports professionals and amateur players may have valid personal injury claims for sports injuries.

Personal injury claims are most common for sports injuries that result from:

  • wrongdoing on the part of another player – for example an improper tackle or violent behaviour
  • inadequate supervision or training where it’s reasonably foreseeable that this could lead to serious injuries
  • poorly maintained fields or faulty equipment.

Do you have a valid sports injury claim?

The validity of a sports injury claim depends on the circumstances surrounding the injury.

In South Africa, what’s known as the law of delict defines the conditions under which a defendant may be liable for the harm caused to a claimant. These conditions are that:

  • the claimant must have experienced pain and/or suffering as a result of the actions of the defendant
  • the claimant’s injury must have been a direct result of wrongful conduct on the part of the defendant
  • the defendant must be accountable for their actions; that is, their actions must have been voluntary and made in a sound state of mind
  • there must a clear causal connection between the actions of the defendant and the injury sustained by the claimant.

How do you claim for a sports injury?

To make a successful sports injury claim, you must provide proof that the injury was a direct result of negligence or wrongdoing by the defendant. You’ll also need to prove that at the time of the injury, the defendant had the ability to distinguish between right and wrong, and was capable of exercising self-control.

If you may have a sports injury claim, contact us at DSC Attorneys for professional advice and assistance. We can assess your claim, help you prepare compelling evidence to support the claim and guide you through the claims process, representing your interests in legal proceedings.

We work on a “no win, no pay” basis.

See if you have a claim