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Career of Sports Law in India

What Is Sports Law?

Sports is an emerging field in career of law. It applies to the athletes and the sport they play. India has been on a flourishing track to turn sports into something bigger than our people's entertainment. Managing sponsors, arranging big events, handling media, issuing license to athletes and guaranteeing ethical sporting policy are all becoming major departments of sports. Such complex issues could be dealt with the introduction of proper law that would safeguard the interests of the sports industries and also restore a balance.

With the coming years, as the industry witnessed certain scandals and maladministration in this system, new policies were designed to execute and various associations were set up to govern the sports law in India. Sports Law tackles the legal issues of players, teams, managers and associates.

It touches on a spread of matters including contract, tort, agency, antitrust Constitutional labor, trademark, Sex Discrimination, criminal and tax issues. Some laws depend on the status of the athletes, some laws differ according to the sport and some laws vary for other reasons. It tackles the legal issues of players, teams, managers and associates.

Eligibility In India:

You must complete your 5 years integrated course in India or take up any law-related subject in your undergrad and then go on to pursue a three-year LLB degree.
  • Advised Courses:
    In India, before joining sports law, get a Diploma Post Graduation Degree in Sports Management as it provides added advantages.
    Initially, you might work as a corporate lawyer or in the litigation field and then finally join the Sports area through connections, patience and hard work.

Job Opportunities in Sports Law
The job opportunities as a Sports Lawyer aren't too many. In this section, we have discussed the most popular job opportunities that a sports lawyer might want to take up:
  1. Player Representatives/ Contract Administrators
    For those interested in this line, they must possess good knowledge of contract law, criminal law and estate planning. Being a player representative mainly involves representing the player in case of any action that is found to be illegal by the player.
  2. Legal Advisors/Team Lawyers
    This role mainly involves working closely with sports organizations and analyzing the liabilities and assets.

Positive And Negative Aspects Of Career In Sports Law In India

The bright part to being a sports lawyer is clear as for law students who love sports and always wanted to have their foot in the field, there is nothing better than becoming a sports lawyer as at times you will have the opportunity to work on really relevant issues of the sport access to sport.

You get to experience working with leading athletes, teams, clubs, organizations and the exposure is phenomenal. Traveling to exotic locations and watching some of the best sporting action ring-side, is among the perks of the job.

The dark side although is the lack of recognition for sports law in India as it is not as developed as in foreign countries which truly promotes sports law as a profession. So as a sports lawyer, your first challenge is to make an identity.

Recommended Skills
First thing first, in order to become a sports lawyer, it is essential for you to have at least an undergraduate law degree. GPA secured during the studies should be above average. A good GPA enhances the profile and increases the chances of acceptance as a sports attorney.
  1. Social Media Networking
    Building a professional profile on social media platforms showcases your knowledge of the law and sport to the world. It also helps you build connections with athletes which helps in gaining clients. Twitter and LinkedIn are one of the most used online networking platforms for these profiles. It provides a great way to stay in contact with people you will meet throughout your career and keep updated with their progress.

    Here are some good examples of practicing sports lawyers who use social media effectively:
    • Daniel Geey @FootballLaw
    • Darren Heitner @DarrenHeitner founder of the Sports Agents Blog
    • Ian Lynam @ianlynam
  2. Speaking skills
    A sports lawyer will always be needed to meet new people and create a lot of networks since your networking is essential in the sports industry. For this, having good public speaking skills is crucial since it helps deal with corporate representatives, sportsperson, business owners, arbitrators, etc. Many times, sports attorneys had to present in court in order to address the jury and judges. That's why public speaking is critical there as well.
  3. Gain Experience
    In order to become a successful sports lawyer, gaining experience is considered as important. The most straightforward way to do that is by securing an internship as a sports attorney. But through pro-bono work with athletes and representing associates as well as by doing local work with regional sports law associations. One can earn some experience in the field using the mentioned ways.

However, the most important thing, as mentioned before, should be a keen interest in sports and understand the issues and challenges faced by a sportsperson or an authority, whoever a lawyer might be representing. Since sports include a lot of international exposure, overall knowledge of international laws is also crucial.

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