The NFL and lawyers for thousands of retired NFL players have reached an agreement to end race-based adjustments in dementia testing in the $1 billion settlement of concussion claims, according to a proposed deal filed Wednesday in federal court, reports the Associated Press.

The revised testing plan follows public outrage over the use of ”race-norming,” a practice that came to light only after two former NFL players filed a civil rights lawsuit over it last year. The adjustments, critics say, may have prevented hundreds of Black players suffering from dementia to win awards that average $500,000 or more.

The Black retirees will now have the chance to have their tests rescored or, in some cases, seek a new round of cognitive testing, according to the settlement, details of which were first reported in the New York Times on Wednesday.

”We look forward to the court’s prompt approval of the agreement, which provides for a race-neutral evaluation process that will ensure diagnostic accuracy and fairness in the concussion settlement,” NFL lawyer Brad Karp said in a statement.

The proposal, which must still be approved by a judge, follows months of closed-door negotiations between the NFL, class counsel for the retired players and lawyers for the Black players who filed suit, Najeh Davenport and Kevin Henry.

The vast majority of the league’s players – 70 percent of active players and more than 60 percent of living retirees – are Black. So the changes are expected to be significant, and potentially costly for the NFL.

”No race norms or race demographic estimates – whether Black or White – shall be used in the settlement program going forward,” the proposal said.

To date, the concussion fund has paid out $821 million for five types of brain injuries, including early and advanced dementia, Parkinson’s disease and Lou Gehrig’s disease, also known as ALS.

Lawyers for the Black players suspect that White men were qualifying for awards at two or three times the rate of Blacks since the payouts began in 2017. It’s unclear whether a racial breakdown of payouts will ever be done or made public.

Black NFL retiree Ken Jenkins and others have asked the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department to investigate.

The binary scoring system used in dementia testing – one for Black people, one for everyone else – was developed by neurologists in the 1990s as a crude way to factor in a patient’s socioeconomic background.