A Couple Of Employment Law Related Notes From The Sports World
- Mixed martial arts fighter Leslie Smith has filed an unfair labor practices charge with the National Labor Relations Board, alleging that her contract was not renewed by the Ultimate Fighting Championship “UFC” because of her efforts to unionize UFC fighters. This could be a violation of the National Labor Relations Act “NLRA,” if UFC fighters (including Smith) are employees, and not independent contractors. The NLRA only applies to employees. The UFC obviously has a lot at stake here.
- The “Save America’s Pastime Act” was passed in March as a part of the omnibus spending bill. The Act contains language which exempts professional baseball players from overtime pay requirements under the Fair Labor Standards Act, provided that they are paid a weekly salary equal to 40 hours at the federal minimum wage rate. I know you are probably thinking why, MLB players are all paid a ton of money (in fact 41 will earn over 20 million this season)? However, the Act is in response to a class action filed by some minor leaguers, who can be paid as little as $1,100 per month.