Philadelphia Plans to Protect Athletes as Pennsylvania Considers High School NIL Rights

Written by Kassandra Ramsey, Esq.

· Name Image Likeness,NIL,NCAA,High School NIL,High School Athletes

Every day, sports fans witness the myriad of creative ways that college athletes are taking advantage of the new name, image, and likeness (NIL) opportunities. The changes to the NCAA’s NIL policy has opened many doors for college athletes. Many have entered endorsement deals and others have begun their journey down the road of entrepreneurship. As college athletes enjoy their new right to profit from the commercial use of their own name, image, and likeness, many have questioned whether these rights and freedoms should trickle down to high school athletes? It appears that several states and the District of Columbia thinks so.

Since college athletes gained the right to profit from their NIL, several states have amended their rules to allow high school athletes to profit from the commercial use of their name, image, and likeness. Currently, there are 21 states that allow high school athletes to monetize their NIL. This number is going to continue to grow as it becomes increasingly clear that NIL is here to stay.

In fact, the state of Pennsylvania may be next on the list as evidenced by the NIL plan that the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association approved on first reading back in July. Before becoming effective, the plan must pass two more readings. As the state awaits high school NIL rights to become a reality, a city council member in Philadelphia has introduced a billed aimed at protecting young athletes. City council member, Isaiah Thomas introduced the Philly NIL Youth Protection Act.

Philly NIL Youth Protection Act

Under the proposed Philly NIL Youth Protection Act, Philadelphia residents attending high school whose families make $150,000 or less per year who either have received or may receive a NIL deal will be able to participate in a program that will provide NIL resources. The program will be developed by a managing director or someone picked by the mayor. The programs will provide access to up to five billable hours of legal and financial representation. Students will also be able to get an evaluation of the NIL Deals they received or are likely to receive. The managing director will also be required to distribute educational materials to eligible students. If this bill becomes law, it will provide a great resource to Philadelphia residents. Perhaps other cities m follow suit.

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