The State of Oklahoma now has a special sports agent prosecution team, which was announced by Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt last Friday. The prosecution team is led by an attorney within the Attorney General’s office, and will include investigators who will be hired to investigate situations as they become apparent. On the surface, it is a step that distinguishes the State of Oklahoma from many other states that are merely making amendments to their existing Athlete Agent Acts. However, Oklahoma also recently updated its sports agent regulations.
Highlights of the 2011 revamped Oklahoma Athlete Agent law:
- Sports agent applicants have to post a $250,000 surety bond.
- 1st infraction = misdemeanor with a fine up to $250,000.
- 2nd infraction = felony with a fine up to $500,000 and 3 years in prison.
Message for sports agents and those acting on their behalf – READ CAREFULLY:
As you are aware, the NFLPA is currently no longer unionized. However, it is essential that you are aware that state law still restricts your contact with football “underclassmen”.
The State of Oklahoma Uniform Athlete Agent Act (“UAAA”) and the University of Oklahoma Athlete Agent Policy require agents (and individuals acting as agents) to register themselves with both the Secretary of State and University prior to contacting any student-athlete. Contact is defined in broad based terms and includes Facebook friending.
Contact of any type with a student-athlete who is not eligible to enter into a professional sports contract is prohibited. Therefore, any contact by agents (or their associates, runners, etc.) with any University of Oklahoma football student-athletes who are not at least three (3) NFL seasons removed from high school would be a violation of both the State of Oklahoma UAAA and University of Oklahoma policy. Any conduct contrary to the parameters of state law and/or university policy may subject you to both criminal and civil penalty.