Sports Law Track: LL.M. in Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law

What is a “Sports Lawyer”?

The sports industry has become increasingly complex and there is a growing demand for qualified sports law professionals. The diverse nature of the area requires sports lawyers to have an array of expertise in law to effectively represent their clients whether they are professional or amateur athletes, leagues or clubs, sports venues and stadium owners and operators, or businesses or sports organizations. Though “sports law” may sound niche, it is actually a broad industry crossing many areas of law.

Sports lawyers usually require knowledge of various areas of law including: contracts, labor, antitrust, tax, intellectual property and media law.

To represent sports industry clients, a lawyer also needs strong contract negotiation and drafting skills in addition to an understanding of the arbitration process. Other areas of law, like immigration, can also come into play for foreign athletes and international leagues or clubs.

Why the Sports Law track within the Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law LL.M.?

The umbrella of the EASL LL.M. provides unique, hands-on learning for individuals interested in the sports law. Topics and courses that were once thought to relate exclusively to entertainment or art can also affect the sports sphere—sports personalities can have brand sponsorships, parts in films or TV shows, their likeness branded in video games or clothing, and more. By studying under the umbrella, it is possible to get the broad range of skills necessary for today’s “sports law” practice. This track is ranked #1 in the U.S. by llm-guide and provides U.S. and international attorneys and law students superior training and an edge when breaking into this competitive industry.

In addition there is a tradition of a focus on sports law at the University of Miami. The Entertainment and Sports Law Society is one of the most active student organizations and it has hosted an annual international symposium on Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law since 1997.
Read more on sports law at University of Miami Law.

Miami – A Great Sports City

(Pictured: Students in the program meeting with Miami Heat VP and Associate General Counsel Vered Yako.)

Miami and South Florida are home to all major professional sports franchises in baseball, football, basketball and hockey, and soon soccer. The city also hosts major events and championships each year. Top-rated tennis players come to the prestigious Miami Open, and since 1935 the city has hosted one of the largest college bowl games – The Orange Bowl. Only 20 miles south of the law school is Homestead-Miami Speedway, one of the leading venues on the NASCAR circuit. There is also the World Golf Cadillac Championship each March showcasing the best golf players from around the world and even the Polo World Cup featuring international teams is held on Miami Beach. All this enables students to have site visits with general counsels on site and access to opportunities for their practicum requirement.

Courses and Requirements

The LL.M. comprises two semesters of intensive study and training, consisting of required and elective courses, and practicum. All courses are taught by prominent practicing attorneys and the blended nature of the LL.M. enables students to maximize their studies and create a curriculum particular to their goals. Prerequisites, required and elective courses provide a well-rounded but field-specific curriculum to match individual professional interests.

 See Requirements for International Students Who Plan to Take the NY Bar

International students have the option to do a special course of study in the LL.M. in Entertainment, Arts, and Sports Law to accumulate enough credits to comply with the State Board of Law Examiners’ requirements to qualify to sit for the New York Bar Exam. These students still complete the LL.M. in the same two-semester period and earn the same degree. If an international student does not want to take the N.Y. bar (or wants to take additional courses) he or she can use the additional courses for study of EASL electives of their choice.


Required Track Courses
Sports Law (2 credits)
Negotiating and Drafting Sports Venue Agreements (1 credit)
Negotiating and Drafting the Purchase of a Minor League Baseball Team (1 credit)
Copyright Law (3 credits)
Trademark Law (2 credits)
Practicum (2 credits)
Required Elective Courses (that may be Substituted with Director's Permission):
Representing the Pre-Professional Athlete (1 credit)
Representing the Professional Athlete (1 credit)
Prerequisites: None

Required NY Bar Courses:
Immersive Introduction to American Law (2 credits)*
Legal Communication and Research I (2 credits)*
Business Associations (4 credits) ^ *

* This course complies with the State Board of Law Examiners’ requirements to qualify to sit for the New York Bar Exam.
 ^The requirement to enroll in Business Associations may be waived with the prior approval of the Director of the Program.
See more information for foreign lawyers on taking a U.S. Bar Exam.

 

See more information for international students interested in the EASL LL.M.

REQUIRED COURSES

 

Sports Law - Surveys major areas including antitrust, labor (collective bargaining and arbitration), rights of publicity and privacy, and anti-discrimination law with a focus on the laws governing professional and collegiate leagues, teams and athletes.
 

Negotiation and Drafting in Sports - Provides the opportunity to negotiate and draft complex agreements and deal documents (stadium leases, naming rights, sponsorships, media rights, concerts, etc. ) that a lawyer advising a sports team/owner and/or their counterparties would encounter.
 

Copyright Law - Addresses the legal protection provided under the Copyright Act of 1976 (and subsequent amendments) for artistic, musical and literary works (including computer programs).

Trademark Law - Introduces the legal protection under U.S. law for trademarks, service marks and trade dress; also covers related state and common law doctrines and relevant international agreements.
 

Practicum - A practicum requirement affords students the opportunity for additional training in the workplace.
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PREREQUISITES (4 of 6 required or equivalent)


Administrative Law
Antitrust
Business Associations
Federal Income Tax
Labor Law
Trusts and Estates

EXAMPLES OF ELECTIVE COURSE OPTIONS

International Sports Law

Representing the Professional Athlete

Representing the Pre-Professional Athlete

Representing the Professional Sports Franchise

Media & Entertainment in the Digital Age

Collective Bargaining in Entertainment/Sports

Entertainment Law: TV and Motion Pictures

Negotiating and Drafting for the Business of Entertainment

Negotiation Skills

Union Organizing and Collective Bargaining in the Entertainment Industry

Communications Law

Digital Rights Law

Intellectual Property: Transactions and Litigation

Immigration for Athletes, Artists & Entertainers

Media Distribution

Media Law

Social Media and Online Liability

International Copyright

Taxation of Exempt Organizations

MIAMI LAW SPORTS LAW CONFERENCE
Students in the program also attend a two-day International Symposium on Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law the Law School co-hosts with the American Bar Association’s Forum on the Entertainment & Sports Industries.

SPORTS LAW TRACK LEADERSHIP 

Peter CarfagnaPeter Carfagna is Director of the Sports Law Track and is Chairman/CEO of Magis, LLC, a privately owned sports marketing, management and investment company, including family ownership of the Lake County Captains, Cleveland Indians Class A Affiliate. He also served as Chief Legal Officer & General Counsel of International Management Group (IMG) - world's premier and most diversified sports, entertainment and media company. Before that he was Senior Partner at Jones Day LLP where he worked as outside counsel to the Cleveland Browns and Cleveland Cavaliers’ ownership groups. 

Sports Track Committee: The Sports Track Committee provides advice as it relates to curriculum, guest speakers and practicum opportunities students should be seeking based on industry trends. Members include:
Mason Ashe, Founder and CEO, Ashe Sports & Entertainment Consulting, Inc.
Charles Baker, Chair, O'Melveny's Sports Industry Group
Darren Heitner, Founder of Heitner Legal, P.L.L.C.
Mike Kelly, Retired Managing Partner Morgan Lewis
Kim Miale, NFL Agent and General Counsel at Roc Nation Sports
Adam Schlatner, Attorney, Cozen O'Connor

FACULTY

Professor Jan Paulsson is currently an arbitrator of the Court of Arbitration for Sport of 25 years standing and has decided some 55 disputes involving international athletes, teams, and organizations. He has also served as lead counsel for the International Olympic Committee in 18 international disputes brought against it, from 2002 to 2008.  At Miami Law he teaches “International Sports: Basic Concept of the Legal Framework.”

Professor Laurence Rose, director of Miami Law's Litigation Skills Program, advises the Sports Law track. He served as an Assistant Athletic Director at the University of Kansas and as an advisor to the University of Miami Athletic Department, as well as a Principal in SportsMasters, a Sports Law consultant to universities, coaches and athletic personnel in matters before the NCAA. 

Michael Kelly - practiced antitrust law in the Washington, D.C. Office of MorganLewis for thirty years, where his antitrust clients included some of the world's leaders in the industries of professional sports, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, consumer electronics, and energy. 

Adam J. Schlatner - Attorney at Cozen O-Connor who co-teaches course on “Representing the Professional Sports Franchise;” expert in complex commercial litigation.

Steven ​Silton – Partner at Cozen O’Connor LLP in Minneapolis.  Represents sports leagues, franchises, club owners and athletes and at Miami Law teaches “Representing a Professional Sports Franchise.”

Dean and Professor of Law Patricia White served as tax advisor to the Economic Study Committee of Major League Baseball, and advises the Sports Law track of the program. She has also served on the NCAA Compliance Committee for the University of Utah. 

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