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The Largest College Admissions Bribery Scandal Erupted in the United States With a Number of Celebrities as Targets

In the early weeks of March, news broke of the largest college admissions scandal in the country's history, nicknamed "Operation Varsity Blues".  At least 40 people were charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud for their alleged participation in the scheme. Among those charged was actress, Lori Loughlin, who is most famous for her role as Aunt Becky on ABC's hit sitcom series Full House. Charges against her allege that, in order to get her children into the University of Southern California ("USC"), Loughlin paid $500,000 to have her daughters designated as crew recruits, although it is reported that they did not participate in that sport. One day after 14 parties involved in the scheme agreed to plead guilty, 16 parents, including Loughlin and her husband, were charged in a second indictment for conspiring to commit fraud and money laundering. Loughlin has refused to plead guilty and plans to fight these charges.

Sports Fan unhappyBenjamin Riesenberg is a former Garvey Schubert Barer legal extern who worked out of the firm’s New York office. He was a law student at Brooklyn Law School.

As the popularity of fantasy sports grows, so do the legal issues surrounding the industry.  The main legal challenges facing fantasy sports have been centered on the issue of whether pay-to-play fantasy sports contests constitute illegal gambling.  In 2006, Congress passed The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (“UIGEA”), which created certain guidelines for fantasy sports.  For a pay-to-play fantasy sports contest to be legal under the UIGEA, the fantasy sports game must have a result that is predominantly based on the knowledge of participants as opposed to mere chance.

Eugene T. LeeEugene Lee's book cover, Of Counsel to the Sports and Entertainment practice group of Garvey Schubert Barer and a widely recognized and respected industry expert on NFL player contracts, salary cap, the collective bargaining agreement and athlete branding, has released a book titled “My Brother’s Keeper: Above & Beyond ‘The Dotted Line’ With the NFL’s Most Ethical Agent.”

The book delves into the lives of NFL players at different stages in their careers – from college to the pros, to life after the game. From the locker rooms into the homes of potential and current clients, Eugene brings to view what it takes to keep the dreams of players alive. Eugene also gives insight into how he conducts his business with the same integrity and faith by which he lives. Even though he is touted by some as a real-life “Jerry Maguire,”  his unique, multi-faceted approach and charisma makes him an exciting and fascinating luminary to watch in this industry.

From meeting his first clients on the basketball courts at Notre Dame, Mr. Lee has represented over thirty-five NFL players over the past decade.  From his work for his NFL clients, Mr. Lee has gained a vast understanding and in-depth knowledge of the legal aspects of NFL player representation including the drafting and negotiation of player contracts, injury settlements and endorsement and sponsorship agreements.

To purchase a copy of this book, please click here: http://tinyurl.com/nfq3zlf

The National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) ruled on March 26, 2014 that Northwestern University football players who receive scholarships from the University are employees of the University and are eligible to unionize.

The NLRB cited several reasons for its decision, including that the University benefits from the players’ services through the compensation it receives for those services in the form of advertising, sponsorships, media buys, ticket sales, etc.  Additionally, it found that the University controls how and when the players perform their services and that these football players receive compensation for their services in the form of scholarships. The NLRB determined that football players receiving scholarships from the University are not “primarily students” and that their activities are rather economic ones that benefit the school.

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The Sports, Arts and Entertainment Group at Garvey Schubert Barer provides full service legal representation on sports, entertainment and business matters, including handling transactions related to brand management, licensing, joint ventures, venture capital, private equity, technology, the Internet and new media.
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