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Wisconsin Supreme Court Rules Cheerleading a Contact Sport

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The Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that high school cheerleading is a contact sport, meaning that cheerleaders cannot sue one another for unintentional injuries occurring during routines.  The ruling gives cheerleading the same contact sport status and legal protections as football or basketball.

The court’s ruling stems from a lawsuit filed by Brittany Noffke, a cheerleader at Holmen High School in western Wisconsin.  Noffke was dropped by another cheerleader while practicing a routine in 2004, leading to a serious head injury.  She subsequently sued her fellow teammate and the school district.

The Wisconsin District 4 Court of Appeals had previously ruled in favor of Noffke, finding that cheerleading is not a contact sport and thus not subject to the legal protections offered by the contact sport designation.

However, according to this week’s Supreme Court ruling, any sport which includes “physical contact between persons” should be labeled a contact sport, including cheerleading.  As a result, the court found that Noffke has no grounds for a suit against the fellow cheerleader or the school district.

If you or someone you know has been the victim of an accident leading to personal injury, please contact the Appleton personal injury lawyers of Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ® at 800.472.9334 to speak with a a qualified  attorney.