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| 1 minute read

Georgia High School Association Bylaws Rule Change – NIL Deals for High School Students

On October 2, 2023, the Georgia High School Association approved a Bylaws rule change to allow athletes from any sport to earn money for their name, image or likeness (NIL Deals) without losing amateur status. The Georgia High School Association did include some restrictive measures in the bylaws change to ensure certain safeguards for student athletes and schools. Specifically, any NIL Deals with a high school athlete cannot be based on athletic performance or achievement, used as incentive to play at a particular school or be offered or provided by a school or school representative. Deals can only involve the player. Further, school name, logos, school gear, school facilities or trademarks cannot be used by a student athlete with any NIL deal. Students are prohibited from activities that would violate school policy such as tobacco, alcohol or banned substances. Finally, student athletes must notify their school’s principal or athletic director within seven days of entering into a NIL Contract.

Georgia is now one of roughly thirty states that have approved high school student athletes to enter into NIL Deals. While this opens the door for student athletes to profit from their name, image and likeness, it also can create a taxable income stream for the athlete that can impact financial aid eligibility for college. Additionally, high school student athletes should make sure they are aware of  activities that would violate school policy. A more restrictive school policy potentially limits NIL Deals for a student athlete eager to profit from their name, image or likeness in high school. High schools should take action to ensure they understand the Bylaw changes and are working together with their student athletes to ensure neither the school nor the student violate the changed Bylaw provisions and jeopardize program and/or individual student eligibility.


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