Sports Law

Agent #721

My home state of Florida is one of the most stringent, if not the most active state, to regulate the sports agent profession.  I applied for my Florida license shortly after forming Dynasty Athlete Representation as an LLC on April 7, 2007.  It took until December 31, 2007 before I was formally licensed by the state.  Before I was mailed by license, I had to pay a nonrefundable fee of roughly $1,300.  When trying to start up a business (especially a sports agency) from scratch, the last thing you want to do is hand away $1,300 that could definitely help in another area.  But also, the last thing you want to do as a new entrant into an industry is make a bad name for yourself and break any rule or regulation.  Thus, I jumped through the hoops and came away with my Florida license (#721…hence the title of this post).  Click here if you want to see my official documentation.

An important note about registering as an athlete agent in a state: you must only do so if you wish to recruit a Student athlete.  Thus, if you are aiming to sign a player who is already a professional (example: he is already in an MLB Minor League system), then you are not required to register in that player’s state.  However, if you are going to sign a player that will be entering a professional draft and he just finished his final season as an NCAA athlete, you should go ahead and get registered in his state as soon as you begin discussing the potential of representing him at the next level.  Most states offer a temporary license to athlete agents while their applications are pending, which makes sense, because many agents do not apply to become registered in a particular state until they believe they have a solid shot at landing a player there.  Such a plan makes sense when states are charging as much as $1,300 for registration (it adds up!).  We have not even discussed renewal fees, which most states require (often times every two years).

Since many states require sports agents to become registered as athlete agents, athletes might as well use such rules to their advantage.  As Jenn Meale, communications director at the state Department of Business and Professional Regulation of Florida points out,

The advantage of working with a state-licensed athlete agent is that licensure requirements must be met and include a criminal background check. (The regulations also) require that within the preceding five years, the applicant has not had a conviction or entered a plea of no contest . . . for any crime that relates to the practice of an athlete agent.

So athletes have a responsibility as well.  Do your background checks.  If I were not registered in the state of Florida, then you should ask me why that is the case.  Maybe I had some sort of criminal record, which may entice you to stay away from me since I am going to be having an instrumental role in helping you manage your life.  Luckily, my record is clean, but hypotheticals are needed to explain the point.

The individual state applications are a pain, but there definitely is a solid reason behind all of the madness.  Student athletes need to be protected as much as possible before they make the huge decision in selecting an agent.  Many states have made the athlete agent registration process easier by becoming a UAAA state.  All this means is that they have adopted the Uniform Athlete Agent Act of 2000, which attempts to standardize the requirements and process for becoming a licensed agent.

By Darren Heitner

Darren Heitner created Sports Agent Blog as a New Year's Resolution on December 31, 2005. Originally titled, "I Want To Be A Sports Agent," the website was founded with the intention of causing Heitner to learn more about the profession that he wanted to join, meet reputable individuals in the space and force himself to stay on top of the latest news and trends.

Heitner now runs Heitner Legal, P.L.L.C., which is a law firm with many practice areas, including sports law and contract law. Heitner has represented numerous athletes and sports agents as legal counsel. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Indiana University Bloomington from 2011-2014, where he created and taught a course titled, Sport Agency Management, which included subjects ranging from NCAA regulations to athlete agent certification and the rules governing the profession. Heitner serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where he teaches a Sports Law class that includes case law surrounding athlete agents and the NCAA rules.

15 replies on “Agent #721”

Good advice in the post Darren, especially the point about athletes also having a responsibility as well. Too often athletes rely on a friend or another athlete without doing anything further. Athletes and those close to them have to remember that they are placing their professional future in the hands of the agent and the choice should not be made without a fair amount of research and thought.

I should point out that your line “you must only do so if you wish to recruit a Student athlete” is not true all states. California’s disclosure requirements apply to both professional and student athletes.

Keep up the great work.

I think this is a question that many readers may wnat to know the answer to:

If a state subscibes to the UAAA does that mean an athlete-agent can register in one state and its good for all the other UAAA registered states?

While the UAAA has made the application process much easier and standardized for all UAAA states, each state still requires that an athlete-agent separately register in each respective state and pay that state’s application fee.

[…] Darren Heitner: In order to be a “sports agent”, there is no actual registration. To be permitted to recruit collegiate athletes in many states, you must register and pay a fee in those states. A majority of states are now bound by the Uniform Athlete Agent Act (UAAA), which allows those states to use a standardized form for registration. Those states charge various amounts, however. Personally, I am registered in the State of Florida. I actually discussed this process in a recent post. […]

Does a Sport Agent needs to register in every state that he represents an athlete? Or only in the state he resides in?

please email me with information


I was just brushing up on UAAA knowledge and came across this post again. I thought of a question and would like your thoughts: In Washington states version of the UAAA it states, “(2) An athlete agent may not intentionally:
(a) Initiate contact with a student-athlete unless providing the student-athlete with the athlete agent disclosure form as provided in RCW 19.225.030;”

When taking this clause in conjunction with recruiting athletes on facebook, is it possible to reconcile the two? Can we just put some type of UAAA disclaimer on our facebook page? Thoughts?

Interesting question. I looked at the statute you referenced and noticed that the athlete agent disclosure form must be signed by the athlete agent. Perhaps you create a document, sign it, and upload it as a picture on your facebook page. Then, when you contact any player, you send a link to that image in conjunction with your message.

The main point of my response is that we have no clue how the rules an regulations will change face with the presence of these social networks. They have not changed with the times and many questions remain. Thus far, the NCAA, federal, and state agencies have stayed away from litigating any matters concerning recruitment using social networks like facebook. I believe that at some point, we will begin to see some sort of rules formulated, which will give everyone a better idea of what is proper and what is a violation of the law as it stands.

Do you need to register in that athlete’s home state where they went to high school and their family resides, or do you need to register with the state that their college is in?

Hey, I am a 24yr old who has a strong passion to become a sports agent. I graduated in may 2009 with a BS in CRJ, I am currently in grad school majoring in sports management and also taking classes to become certified as a coach & attending law school in fall of 2011. Iam working on networking and getting my name exposed. My web site is, check it out if you get time. I going to apply for an intern at a agency while I am in school, but once i receive my law degree I would like to be established and ready to start my own firm. I’ve made business card with my company logo, web sites, and got it all copy written. Do you know of anything else I could do to help prepare myself for the future? Such as networking idea’s, or other ways to get my name out there.I ask you this, due to the fact we are around the same age, and seems as if we have the same passion.

So when you see all the talk about players like Reggie Bush and OJ Mayo working with agents in college, what are the rules that they and the agents are breaking?

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