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S. 4004 (116th): Fairness in Collegiate Athletics Act

The text of the bill below is as of Jun 18, 2020 (Introduced). The bill was not enacted into law.



2d Session

S. 4004


June 18, 2020

introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation


To ensure that college athletes, and not institutions of higher education, are able to profit from their name, image, and likeness, and for other purposes.


Short title

This Act may be cited as the Fairness in Collegiate Athletics Act.



In this Act—



The term Commission means the Federal Trade Commission.



The term compensation means any remuneration, in cash or kind, whether provided at the time or at any subsequent date to a student athlete, except such term shall not include any grant, scholarship, fellowship, tuition assistance, or other form of financial aid provided to a student for pursuing a postsecondary education.


Institution of higher education

The term institution of higher education has the meaning given such term in section 102 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1002).


Intercollegiate athletic association

The term intercollegiate athletic association




the National Collegiate Athletic Association (or any successor organization); and


any intercollegiate athletic association that the Commission determines is similar in purpose and scope to the association described in clause (i), subject to subparagraph (B); and


does not include the National Junior College Athletic Association (or any successor organization) or the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (or any successor organization).


Student athlete

The term student athlete means an individual who is enrolled in an institution of higher education and engages in postsecondary athletics.


Third party

The term third party means, with respect to any student athlete, any entity other than the institution of higher education in which such student athlete is enrolled.


Establishment of rules for payment of student athletes

Not later than June 30, 2021, any intercollegiate athletic association shall establish—


a policy that permits any student athlete to—


earn compensation from a third party as a result of the use of the name, image, or likeness of such student athlete; and


subject to the requirements under section 3 of the Sports Agent Responsibility and Trust Act (15 U.S.C. 7802), obtain professional representation with respect to matters described in subparagraph (A); and


rules and programs for the administration of the policy described in paragraph (1), including—


requiring student athletes to report any compensation described in such paragraph, or any agreement to receive such compensation, to the institution of higher education in which they are enrolled and the intercollegiate athletic association within a reasonable period following—


the date on which an agreement to receive such compensation is reached between the student athlete and the third party; and


the date on which such compensation is received by the student athlete; and


such rules and programs as are deemed necessary to—


preserve the amateur status of student athletes;


ensure appropriate recruitment of prospective student athletes; and


prevent illegitimate activity with respect to any third party seeking to recruit or retain student athletes with respect to any institution of higher education, including any third party—


with a prior or existing association, either formally or informally, with any institution of higher education; or


with a prior or existing financial involvement with respect to postsecondary athletics.


Enforcement provisions


Unfair or deceptive act or practice


In general

A violation of section 3 shall be treated as a violation of a rule defining an unfair or deceptive act or practice prescribed under section 18(a)(1)(B) of the Federal Trade Commission Act (15 U.S.C. 57a(a)(1)(B)).


Actions by the Commission

The Commission shall enforce section 3 in the same manner, by the same means, and with the same jurisdiction, powers, and duties as though all applicable terms and provisions of the Federal Trade Commission Act (15 U.S.C. 41 et seq.) were incorporated into and made a part of this Act.


Enforcement related to nonprofit organizations

Notwithstanding section 4, 5(a)(2), or 6 of the Federal Trade Commission Act (15 U.S.C. 44, 45(a)(2), 46) or any jurisdictional limitation of the Federal Trade Commission, the Commission shall also enforce this Act and any regulations promulgated under this Act, in the same manner provided in paragraphs (1) and (2) of this subsection, with respect to organizations not organized to carry on business for their own profit or that of their members.



Except as provided under subsection (a), no cause of action shall lie or be maintained in any court against any intercollegiate athletic association, or any institution of higher education which is a member of such association for the adoption or enforcement of a policy, rule, or program established under section 3.



No State or political subdivision of a State may adopt, maintain, enforce, or continue in effect any law, regulation, rule, requirement, or standard related to permitting or prohibiting a student athlete to receive compensation from an institution of higher education or a third party as a result of such athlete's performance or participation in postsecondary athletics.