Sports Law Research Guide
Prepared by Nancy McMurrer; updated by Layna Moysich.
This guide provides introductory sources, research techniques, and websites on sports law.
HeinOnline and LexisNexis Academic are UW Restricted databases.
Sports law touches on a range of issues, including torts, contracts, agency, civil rights, intellectual property, and antitrust law. For an overview of legal issues in sports law consult a legal encyclopedia or one of these introductory books:
- Essentials of Sports Law, 4th ed. KF3989 W66 2010 at Classified Stacks
- Sports Law in a Nutshell, 4th ed. KF3989.Z9C48 2009 at Reference Area
- Sports Law Practice, 3d ed. KF3989.G69 2009 (updated annually) at Classified Stacks
Articles on topics involving sports issues may be printed in general subject law reviews or in journals that focus on sports law topics.
Law students should search the law review sections of Lexis or Westlaw.
Specialized journals include:
- Denver University Sports and Entertainment Law Journal
- DePaul Journal of Sports Law & Contemporary Problems
- Entertainment and Sports Lawyer
- Harvard Journal of Sports & Entertainment Law
- Marquette Sports Law Review
- Seton Hall Journal of Sports and Entertainment Law
- Texas Review of Entertainment and Sports Law
- Virginia Sports & Entertainment Law Journal
- Willamette Sports Law Journal
Note that these law reviews are included in the databases mentioned above.
To find books in the Gallagher Law Library, search the online catalog by keyword or by subject, such as:
- College Sports
- Doping in Sports
- Professional Sports
- Sex Discrimination in Sports
- Sports Facilities
- Sports Franchises
You can find other books in other UW Libraries and Summit libraries combined catalog.
Cases, laws, and regulations relevant to sports law research may be federal or state-specific. The best place to begin finding law is generally with secondary sources. For a general guide to this process, see the Gallagher guide on the Caselaw Research Checklist. If you are looking for a specific statute, see the Gallagher Statutory Research Checklist.
Blogs & Websites
Several websites that focus sports law may also be good starting places for research.
Marquette University Law School’s National Sports Law Institute hosts a collection of web pages related to sports law research, including a list of federal statutes and documents related to sports law and pages devoted to international sports law.
The WEX Sports Law webpage, hosted at Cornell Law School’s Legal Information Institute, is designed as a public-access legal dictionary and encyclopedia and it links to some primary law.
The Sports Law Blog has links and posts of interest. Look at the table of contents on the left side under Sports Law Resources. The blog comments on legal issues involved in current sports news. Other blawgs (as legal blogs are sometimes called) include:
- Field and Court, which deals with real and fantasy sports
- The Official Review covers topics such as contracts, drugs, endorsements, lockouts, professional sports associations and leagues, and women in sports.
- Seattle Sports, Entertainment & Trademark Lawyer Blog
- SportzBiz--The Business of Sports Illuminated
- Sports in the Courts Blog offers "commentary on the intersection between sports and the law"
The Penn State Law, Institute for Sports Law, Policy and Research, has lists of resources and links to some empirical and policy research; a list of selected law review articles; a public documents section focusing on selected federal laws (with summaries, text, and some related committee reports and hearings); and other material.
GlobaLex, International Sports Law guide (updated in May/June 2014) is full of great resources covering legal aspects of the Olympics, the Court of Arbitratio for Sports, anti-doing, anti-discrimination and human rights, and more.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport handles commercial (for example, enforcement of an athlete’s employment contract) and disciplinary (for example, doping allegations) disputes involving sport.