Judge Gives Final Approval to NCAA Player Likeness Settlement
July 16, 2015 | Oakland, California
A federal judge today gave her final approval to a class action settlement in a lawsuit brought by NCAA student-athletes against videogame maker Electronic Arts, the NCAA, and the Collegiate Licensing Company. The lawsuit alleged that EA, NCAA, and CLC conspired to use student-athletes' names, images, and likenesses in EA's NCAA-branded football and basketball videogames, without the players' permission, in violation of the players' publicity rights and other laws.
The combined settlement provides for a $60 million Settlement Fund to be distributed to student-athletes who appeared on rosters of teams used in EA's videogames, and who made timely claims in the suit. Although the original claims deadline was July 2, 2015, the judge agreed to extend the deadline for claims until July 31, 2015. (For more information, see http://www.ncaa-ea-likeness-settlement.com).
The lawsuit originated with a case brought on behalf of former University of Nebraska quarterback Sam Keller by The Paynter Law Firm and co-counsel Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro, and was eventually consolidated with a case brought by former UCLA basketball star Ed O'Bannon alleging that the defendants' actions violated federal antitrust laws.