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NFL, players union announce new game-day concussion protocol

In this Aug. 17, 2012, file photo, Carolina

In this Aug. 17, 2012, file photo, Carolina Panthers' Haruki Nakamura (43) runs onto the field during player introductions before an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins in Charlotte, N.C. The former Carolina Panthers player who received what the NFL deemed a career-ending concussion has sued Lloyd's of London for denying a $1 million insurance policy. The lawsuit filed this week in North Carolina could become a test case for insurers dealing with the fallout from sports concussions and head trauma claims. The NFL has awarded defensive back Haruki Nakamura full disability benefits since the August 2013 concussion in a preseason game. Photo Credit: AP / Mike McCarn

NEW YORK — The NFL and the players association have announced a new policy regarding game-day concussion protocol and discipline for clubs that violate the procedure.

Under the new policy jointly announced Monday, the NFL and NFLPA “will follow a strict and fair process to investigate incidents and determine appropriate discipline, including club fines and possible forfeiture of draft picks.”

The league and the players union will each designate a representative to monitor the implementation of the protocol and investigate potential violations. The probe won’t reach medical conclusions; it will only determine if the protocol was followed. An arbitrator will handle cases where the league and union disagree and report to the commissioner.

Commissioner Roger Goodell retains sole discretion in determining penalties for violations of the game-day concussion protocol.

A first breach will require club employees or medical team members involved to attend remedial education and/or result in a maximum $150,000 fine against the team. Clubs will be fined a minimum $100,000 for subsequent violations.

There are additional penalties if the violation involves aggravating circumstances, and the commissioner may impose more severe financial penalties and require clubs to forfeit draft picks if it’s determined that a club’s medical team ignored protocol for competitive reasons.

New York Sports