The governor of Arkansas signed House Bill 1671 (i.e., the Arkansas Student-Athlete Publicity Rights Acts) into law permitting student-athletes enrolled in a colleges and universities in Arkansas to be paid for the use of their names, images, and likenesses, to hire representatives to represent student-athletes’ interests, and declaring that a student-athlete may not be compelled to forfeit his/her rights in order to participate in intercollegiate athletics. Arkansas becomes the ninth state to enact legislation that permits student-athletes to accept compensation for their names, images, and likenesses (following California, Colorado, Florida, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, Mississippi, and Alabama). The law goes into effect on January 1, 2022.
In most respects, the Arkansas act is similar to predecessor acts enacted in California, Colorado, Florida, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, Mississippi, and Alabama. In pertinent part, the act provides a student-athlete may:
The act further provides, in pertinent part, that colleges and universities and governing bodies may not:
In turn, student-athletes are required to or prohibited from doing the using their names, images, and likenesses in the following circumstances:
The Act requires that any agent, athlete agent, financial advisor, or attorney who is providing professional services to the student-athlete must be licensed in Arkansas. Student-athletes must disclose any contract entered into by the student-athlete to his/her college or university. Additionally, a professional representative of a student-athlete must disclose his/her involvement with a student-athlete to the student-athlete’s college or university in accordance with the time period set by the college or university.