Riddell Attempts to Rid Self of Consumer Concussion Suit

On Friday, August 1, Riddell and other football helmet producers filed a motion to dismiss in the District of New Jersey, in an attempt to end a consumer concussion class-action suit waged against them.  This suit is just one of many attacking Riddell’s marketing of its “Revolution” line of football helmets.

Riddell filed its motion, seeking to dismiss the complaint as it fails to state a claim and lacks the statutorily required specificity for this type of action.  They argue that the complaint is missing any specified statement upon which the plaintiffs may have relied, which is integral to support a claim of deceptive advertising.  Further, the motion to dismiss criticizes the filed complaint for not addressing how the allegedly deceptive advertising influenced the plaintiffs’ purchases, even though the price paid is the specific injury allegedly suffered.

This particular lawsuit relies on a University of Pittsburgh Medical Center study conducted to test Riddell’s helmets and their ability to prevent concussions.  The complaint alleges that Riddell used results from the study to market their helmets as better for preventing concussions.  Subsequently, a number of issues surrounding the study surfaced, including a significant conflict of interests.  The plaintiffs further allege that Riddell knew before their marketing that the study was substantially compromised, but they relied on it to increase their prices anyway.  Plaintiffs seek compensation for the excess amount paid based on the false safety claims.

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