Sports and Entertainment

Client and Industry Challenges

Businesses and individuals in the sports and entertainment industry face a broad range of complex and specialized issues including financing, borrowing, and investment; production and rights acquisition; contract development and disputes; media rights; intellectual property protection and enforcement; regulatory and administrative issues; anti-trust concerns; and stadium and arena development. 

Snell & Wilmer's sports attorneys and entertainment attorneys are dedicated to addressing the unique legal needs of our clients in the sports and entertainment industries. Our attorneys understand the way the sport and entertainment industries work, and we maintain longstanding relationships with sports and entertainment clients who demand the high-quality representation and superior client service.

Areas of Service

Our sports-related legal services include:

  • Contract negotiation and drafting
  • Tax consultation and estate planning
  • Litigation and dispute resolution
  • Intellectual property protection
  • Business and finance transactions

We also provide representation to public and private colleges and universities on amateur athletic issues. For these clients, we provide services in the areas of:

  • Title IX and gender equity issues
  • Title VII and coaches compensation issues
  • Procedural due process issues
  • Drug testing programs
  • Athlete eligibility requirements
  • Collegiate licensing and intellectual property protection
  • Exploitation concerns
  • Employee benefits and tax issues

Our entertainment-related legal services include:

  • Negotiating and drafting contracts
  • Structuring and forming business entities
  • Devising business solutions
  • Obtaining motion picture financing
  • Drafting distribution agreements
  • Copyright and trademark protection and exploitation
  • Counseling on merchandising publishing and movie production
  • Counseling on Internet and new media ventures

Clients We Serve

We provide sports law services to athletes at the professional, amateur, collegiate, and high school levels, as well as retired professional athletes and coaches. We also serve professional sports franchises, sports marketing companies, sports agents, ski resort and ski industry clients, and individuals and companies providing products and services in the industry.

We provide entertainment law services to musicians, singers, songwriters, actors, comedians, models, entertainers, authors, artists and filmmakers. We also serve record studios and labels, publishers, broadcasters, national media, media trade associations and other industry clients.

Why Clients Select Us

Multidisciplinary, Client-Centered Service: Our sports and entertainment attorney practice utilizes the experience and in-depth knowledge Snell & Wilmer attorneys who focus their practice in the areas of corporate and transactional, First Amendment, estate planning, licensing, labor, litigation, antitrust, real estate, bankruptcy, intellectual property and tax and estate law.  By being able to readily draw upon the resources of the entire firm, we can provide our sports and entertainment clients with a comprehensive understanding of solutions and opportunities that exist in all aspects of their industries.


Our representative sports and entertainment matters include:

  • Represented professional football players, professional baseball players and other athletes in contract negotiations, endorsements and estate planning
  • Represented a major bowl game association in various transactional matters
  • Represented conference member institutions in infraction and compliance matters
  • Represented college coaches in contract and conference regulation matters
  • Counseled client with regard to sponsorship, marketing and licensing arrangements
  • Counseled client with regard to television, radio, internet and other media agreements and relationships
  • Interpreted governing documents such as association, conference, league and sanctioning body legislation by-laws and rules
  • Represented client in litigation and dispute resolution, including antitrust issues
  • Provided counsel on general contract and business affairs of teams, leagues, professional athletes, entertainers, conferences and other sports and entertainment industry participants

S&W Folio Documents

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