On August 31, 2021, Governor Newsom signed Senate Bill 26 (SB 26) which makes the provisions of the Fair Pay to Play Act (The Act) operative September 1, 2021, and makes the provisions applicable to the California Community Colleges.

The Act, which was passed in 2019, allows college athletes to secure endorsements and sponsorships without losing scholarship eligibility and will generally provide athletes control over the marketing of their names, images, and likenesses.

The Act was originally set to become effective on January 1, 2023. However, SB 26 was first introduced to expedite the effective date to January 1, 2022, or to coincide with the effective date of any specified NCAA bylaw changes as adopted by the NCAA Board of Governors, whichever occurred first. The bill was later amended when it became clear that NCAA bylaw changes would occur on September 1, 2021.

SB 26 is effective September 1, 2021 (instead of January 1, 2022) because the act was amended to be an “urgency statute” to ensure that California schools and athletes were not put at a disadvantage in light of other laws being passed in 2021 in other states.

If you have questions about changes made by SB 26 or related issues related to name, image, and likeness regulations, contact a Jackson Lewis attorney to discuss.