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H.R.950 - Ticket Act
To prohibit restrictions on the resale of event tickets sold in interstate commerce as an unfair or deceptive act or practice.
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SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
(1) Sponsors and promoters of major music, sporting, and theatrical events are increasingly seeking to control the resale of tickets to such events in the secondary market, by employing restrictive State laws, imposing and enforcing onerous contractual or license terms, and imposing technological barriers on ticket resale.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(2) Such restrictions and downstream controls substantially impede interstate commerce in event tickets, drive up ticket prices, reduce availability of tickets to interested purchasers, narrow the choices available to the public, and are unfair to consumers.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(3) Eliminating such restrictions and applying free market principles to the secondary market in event tickets would encourage a robust competitive marketplace in such tickets, would promote the healthy growth of electronic commerce in such tickets in online marketplaces, and would be in the best interests of ticket purchasers, fans, and the general public.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(4) Purchasers of event tickets, whether in the primary or secondary ticket markets, are entitled to minimum consumer protection standards, including provisions for full refunds of ticket purchases in appropriate circumstances.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(5) In order to achieve a nationwide free market in resale of event tickets, Congress must act to preempt State or local laws that unjustifiably restrict such resales, while preserving State and local authority to legislate or regulate to prevent fraud, maintain public order, or vindicate other legitimate State and local interests.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.
(2) EVENT- The term ‘event’ means any concert, theatrical performance, sporting event, exhibition, show, or similar scheduled activity, taking place in a venue with a seating or attendance capacity exceeding 1,000 persons--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(3) EVENT TICKET- The term ‘event ticket’ means any physical, electronic, or other form of a certificate, document, voucher, token, or other evidence indicating that the bearer, possessor, or person entitled to possession through purchase or otherwise has--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(A) a revocable or irrevocable right, privilege, or license to enter an event venue or occupy a particular seat or area in an event venue with respect to one or more events; orCommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(4) PERSON- The term ‘person’ means any natural person, partnership, corporation, association, or other legal entity, including any person acting under color or authority of State law.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(5) RESALE- The term ‘resale’ includes any form of transfer, or offering to transfer, of possession or entitlement to possession of an event ticket from one person to another, with or without consideration, whether in person or by means of telephone, mail, delivery service, facsimile, Internet, email, or other electronic means. The term ‘resale’ does not include the initial sale of an event ticket by the ticket issuer.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(6) STATE- The term ‘State’ means any of the several States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or any other territory or possession of the United States.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 4. PROHIBITION.
(a) Unlawful Conduct- Except as otherwise provided in this Act, it shall be unlawful for any ticket issuer to prohibit or restrict the resale or offering for resale of an event ticket by a lawful possessor thereof.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(1) purporting to impose license or contractual terms on the initial sale of event tickets (including terms printed on the back of a physical ticket) that prohibit resale of the ticket, or restrict the price or other terms and conditions under which a ticket may be resold;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(2) requiring the purchaser of a ticket, whether for a single event or for a series or season of events, to agree not to resell the ticket, or to resell the ticket only through a specific channel approved by the ticket issuer;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(A) a purchaser who resells or offers to resell an event ticket without permission of the ticket issuer, or in violation of a restriction purportedly imposed by the ticket issuer;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(4) imposing any penalty on a ticket purchaser who resells or offers to resell an event ticket without permission or in violation of a restriction purportedly imposed by the ticket issuer, or treating such a purchaser in any material way less favorably than a similarly situated purchaser who does not resell or offer to resell an event ticket, or who complies with resale restrictions purportedly imposed by the ticket issuer;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(5) employing technological means, including any means of promoting, carrying out, documenting or verifying sales of event tickets, or of controlling entry to venues by lawful possessors of event tickets, that have the effect of prohibiting or restricting the ability of purchasers to resell such tickets; orCommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 5. CONSUMER PROTECTION MINIMUM STANDARDS.
(a) Unlawful Conduct- It shall be unlawful for any person to engage in the primary or resale market for event ticket sales in any manner specified in subsection (b) without complying with the consumer protection minimum standards specified in this section with regard to event ticket sales.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(c) Compliance- A person subject to this section may comply with its provisions by conducting its sales or resales of event tickets in a physical or electronic marketplace that provides the consumer protection minimum standards specified in this section.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(E) the event ticket was not delivered to the consumer prior to the occurrence of the event, unless such failure of delivery was due to any act or omission of the consumer;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(2) shall include in a full refund the full price paid by the consumer for the event ticket, together with any fees charged in connection with that purchase, including convenience fees, processing fees, at-home printing charges, shipping and handling charges, or delivery fees; andCommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(f) Requirements as Minimum Requirements- Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit any person subject to this section from implementing consumer protection policies that exceed the minimum standard set forth in this section, and that are otherwise compliant with this Act.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 6. ENFORCEMENT.
(a) Unfair and Deceptive Act or Practice- Any violation of section 4 or 5 shall be treated as a violation of a rule under section 18 of the Federal Trade Commission Act regarding unfair or deceptive acts or practices.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(b) Enforcement by the Federal Trade Commission- The Commission shall enforce this Act in the same manner, by the same means, and with the same jurisdiction, powers and duties, as though all applicable provisions of the Federal Trade Commission Act were incorporated into and made a part of this Act.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(1) CIVIL ACTION- In any case in which the attorney general of a State, or an agency of a State responsible for consumer protection, has reason to believe that an interest of the residents of that State has been or is adversely affected by any person who violates section 4 or 5 of this Act, the attorney general or the State agency, as parens patriae, may bring a civil action on behalf of the residents of the State in a district court of the United States of appropriate jurisdiction--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(A) IN GENERAL- For purposes of paragraph (1)(B)(ii), the amount determined under this paragraph is the amount calculated by multiplying the number of violations by up to $100, with each ticket subject to an unlawful prohibition or restriction, or sold or offered to be sold in violation of section 5, counted as a separate violation.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(3) ATTORNEY FEES- In the case of any successful action under paragraph (1), the court, in its discretion, may award the costs of the action and reasonable attorney fees to the State.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(4) RIGHTS OF FEDERAL REGULATORS- The State shall serve prior written notice of any action under paragraph (1) upon the Federal Trade Commission and provide the Commission with a copy of its complaint, except in any case in which such prior notice is not feasible, in which case the State shall serve such notice immediately upon instituting such action. The Federal Trade Commission shall have the right--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(5) CONSTRUCTION- For purposes of bringing any civil action under paragraph (1), nothing in this Act shall be construed to prevent an attorney general of a State from exercising the powers conferred on the attorney general by the laws of that State to--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(A) VENUE- Any action brought under paragraph (1) may be brought in the district court of the United States that meets applicable requirements relating to venue under
(7) LIMITATION ON STATE ACTION WHILE FEDERAL ACTION IS PENDING- If the Commission has instituted a civil action or an administrative action for violation of this Act, no State attorney general, or official or agency of a State, may bring an action under this subsection during the pendency of that action against any defendant named in the complaint of the Commission for any violation of this Act alleged in the complaint.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 7. EFFECT ON STATE LAW.
(a) Preemption in General- Except as otherwise provided in this section, this Act preempts and supersedes any inconsistent statute, regulation, or rule of a State or political subdivision of a State that purports to permit any action prohibited by this Act, but only to the extent of such inconsistency.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(b) Preemption of Antiscalping Laws- This Act preempts and supersedes any statute, regulation, or rule of a State or political subdivision of a State that limits the price at which an event ticket may be resold.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(2) empowers the operator of a venue or its agent to deny admission to any person, or to eject any person from an event, in order to preserve public safety or order, or to prevent or restrict the admission of minors;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(6) prohibits the intentional circumvention of technological means employed by ticket issuers to enforce limitations on the number of tickets that may be purchased by a single person, or the sale or distribution of devices, computer programs, or other tools for the purpose of such circumvention.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 8. EXCEPTIONS.
(2) not-for-profit educational institutions, with respect to athletic events involving athletes or teams of such institutions, to the extent that such restrictions apply to tickets initially distributed by the institution to--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink