NJ Joins 4 Other States with Legislation Protecting Student-Athlete Rights

The State of New Jersey has joined California, Colorado, Florida and Nebraska as states who have passed laws protecting the rights of student-athletes (as they relate to being compensated for their name, image and likeness rights). Signed by Governor Phil Murphy, the New Jersey Fair Play Act (NJFPA) will allow student-athletes to earn financial compensation from the use of their name.

NJFPA Details

The NJFPA would be applicable in the fifth academic year following its enactment. In other words, under the Act, a four-year institution would be prohibited from upholding any rule, requirement, standard, or other limitation that prevents college athletes from monetizing the use of their name, image, or likeness.

Additionally, a four-year institution would be prohibited from joining the NCAA or any athletic association, conference, or other group or organization with control over intercollegiate athletics if:

  1. its college athletes are prohibited from earning compensation from their name, image, or likeness.
  2. it were to prevent a student-athlete from obtaining professional representation in relation to contracts or legal matters.
  3. it interfered with compensation reaching a student-athlete.

While granting the student-athletes the right to profit from the use of their name, image, and likeness, it falls upon the student-athlete to disclose the contract to a university-designated official of the four-year institution of higher education. Further, the student-athlete endorsers will be prohibited from earning compensation in connection with certain industries, including: adult entertainment, alcohol, gambling of any kind, tobacco/e-smoking, pharmaceuticals, controlled dangerous substances and firearms. (Should a student-athlete earn compensation from such a resource, their scholarship eligibility will be revoked).

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The information contained in this article is intended for educational purposes and to provide a general understanding of regulatory events, legislative changes and the law – not to provide specific legal advice.