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Student-Athlete NIL: Federal and State Legislative Updates and Disparities, Litigation Trends, Use of School's IP, Pay-to-Play

Recording of a 90-minute premium CLE video webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Thursday, June 23, 2022

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE webinar will guide counsel to companies, universities, and student-athletes on name, image, and likeness (NIL) developments. The panel will discuss legislative updates and litigation trends and address pay-to-play concerns and issues related to using a university's IP. The panel will also discuss lessons from the first year of NIL and how the recent developments and lessons inform counsel going forward.


In 2015, the Ninth Circuit changed the playing field for student-athletes when it held that NCAA rules prohibiting the athletes from leveraging their NIL for financial compensation violate federal antitrust laws. Last year, in June 2021, the Supreme Court unanimously held that the NCAA's prohibition of the payment of "other educational benefits," a form of pay to play, violated the antitrust laws. As a result, the NCAA changed its policy to permit athletes who receive NIL payment to maintain NCAA eligibility, but in its new Constitution has maintained a prohibition on pay to play.

Currently, 28 states have adopted student-athlete NIL laws. More states have proposed or pending legislation. However, not all state laws are the same. As a result, these differences have led to disparities within the athletic conferences and given some universities an advantage in recruiting athletes.

Similarly, some schools have adopted policies that reward athletes who maintain their eligibility and a certain GPA. There is no federal legislation yet. Several bills have been proposed but have stalled in committee. Consequently, the restrictions and permitted NIL activities vary from state to state and school to school. Further, questions remain about how the NCAA will enforce its policy.

As state laws, litigation, enforcement, and NCAA policy continue to evolve, athletes, universities, donors, and sponsors must be flexible so they can adapt when circumstances change.

Listen as our authoritative panel of IP attorneys examines the recent NIL developments, including legislative updates and litigation trends. The panel will also address pay-to-play concerns and issues related to using a university's IP. The panel will discuss lessons from the first year of NIL and how the recent developments and lessons inform counsel going forward.



  1. NIL developments
    1. Legislative updates
    2. Litigation trends
  2. Pay-to-play concerns
  3. Using a university's IP and associated issues
  4. Best practices


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • How has the playing field changed for a student-athlete's ability to endorse goods and services?
  • What action have states taken to address the changes with the leveraging of NIL?
  • How may colleges and universities work with donors, athletes, and sponsors in this new legal environment?
  • What lessons can counsel take away from the recent changes in NIL and apply going forward?


Benjamin, Barry
Barry M. Benjamin

Partner; Chair Advertising and Marketing Group
Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton

Mr. Benjamin’s practice focuses on advertising, privacy, and technology transactions, in areas where traditional...  |  Read More

Edel, Martin
Martin D. Edel

Chair College Sports Law Practice and Director
Goulston & Storrs

Mr. Edel is Co-Chair of the firm’s Sports Law Practice, which has been recognized as one of the best in the...  |  Read More

Winter, Mit
Mit Winter

Kennyhertz Perry

Mr. Winter is recognized as a leading college athlete name, image, and likeness lawyer and is sought out by clients and...  |  Read More

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