Tfue, a popular Fornite streamer and professional gamer, is in the middle of a lawsuit against his now-former esports organization, FaZe Clan. This dispute is a perfect example of why it is essential to have legal representation when dealing with esports organizations.
Tfue’s lawyers are seeking damages because the contract signed was unfairly oppressive. In particular, one provision of the contract allowed the organization to claim 80% of the revenues paid by third parties with only 20% going to Tfue. Additionally, the suit alleges that FaZe Clan has been operating illegally as an unlicensed talent agency.
This lawsuit highlights why it is important to have proper representation. In this case, Tfue gave up 80% of his revenues to FaZe Clan and is now seeking a remedy after the fact. With proper representation, the contract can be negotiated in the first place to not only ensure that players and content creators are paid properly, but also to avoid costly and time-consuming litigation later.
Large businesses and organizations will often have legal counsel who advise them and ensure that their best interests are represented. Unfortunately, many self-represented players or content creators do not have the business or legal experience to negotiate high-value contracts.
Additionally, players and content creators might feel pressured to sign contracts, however, they should not feel pressured to do so just because they see others doing the same thing or because they do not think they are worth having representation. These contracts are binding and have real-life consequences. They will have penalties for breaching their terms. It is essential to protect oneself by contacting an esports agent or lawyer before entering into negotiations.
Level Up Esports offers services to protect players and content creators from potentially oppressive contracts and to ensure that their rights are represented. Before entering into any negotiations with these large organizations, it is important to speak with a lawyer who works in the industry and understands players’ rights. We work with our clients to make sure that every contract we make with them satisfies their unique needs and protects their interests.
Level Up Esports operates in British Columbia, Canada. Under the BC Employment Standards Act, a talent agency can only take a maximum of 15% of any of its players’ or “performers’” earnings. This means that it is illegal for a talent agency to take more than 15%. Naturally, the laws will differ across jurisdictions, but, regardless, it is vital to know what your rights are before entering into negotiations.
Tfue’s case illustrates a major problem in the esports industry. Unrepresented players and content creators should not be signing one-sided contracts that have unfair and even oppressive terms. However, it is possible to fight back and protect yourself. If you find yourself in such a situation, you should contact us and seek representation as soon as possible.