Albany, NY – The New York State Legislature passed bill A10500 / S9461 on June 3, 2022, renewing and extending New York’s live event ticketing laws, while adding new protections for consumers and fans. As the entertainment industry continues to recover from the impacts of the COVID pandemic, this legislation ensures that tickets for all live events can be sold and transferred fairly and effectively. The bill extends the current law and incorporates several new consumer friendly measures, including “All In Pricing”, to improve ticket buying experience for fans. From sports leagues to stadium shows to local theaters to Broadway - this bill keeps New York open for business, and brings fans back to the events and shows they want to see.
Chair of the Committee on Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Development, Assembly Member Danny O’Donnell said, “Live events in New York are back and better than ever! New York is the epicenter of the entertainment world, and making sure artists, performers, and venues can reach fans and sell tickets is essential to their work. I am very proud of this legislation, which creates a fair playing field for all those in the industry, and makes sure event goers have transparent and easy access to tickets and protections against bad actors. For shows big and small, and from theater to music to sports and more, this legislation keeps live events in New York booming, and ready to step back into the spotlight.”
Live events were some of the first venues to shut down in March 2020, and some of the last to fully reopen. A 2021 New York State Comptroller report showed that employment in the entertainment industry declined by 66 percent from 2020 to 2021, the largest decline in any sector. Since the reopening of in-person events, many venues are still struggling to recoup losses due to COVID-19 shutdowns, implement new safety protocols, and operate with ongoing uncertainty as new variants of the pandemic continue to impact event attendance.
A10500/S9451 will help the live event industry continue to recover by facilitating the sale and resale of tickets, while updates to the law add new pro-consumer measures that will improve transparency and fairness for all. Key among these improvements is All In Pricing, a provision that will mandate that when consumers go to buy a ticket, the price they see at the beginning of the transaction will include all fees and taxes up front. This will give consumers more information, and prevent frustrating and misleading last minute fees appearing throughout the ticket buying process.
Additional new measures include: A ban on charging a fee for printing tickets at home, a ban on selling tickets that were initially offered to the public for free, and increased fines for using bots to purchase tickets. In recent years, the NYS Attorney General has prosecuted many companies for violating existing laws against using bots to buy up huge batches of tickets within seconds, only to price them higher on the resale market. These increased penalties will give prosecutors further leverage against bad actors who drive up ticket prices for consumers.
Article 25 (“Article 25” or “Ticket Law”) of the New York State Arts and Cultural Affairs Law (“ACAL”) has been in place for decades, regulating how tickets are sold and resold to ensure fairness and consumer protections. The law has been amended and improved, most recently in 2018. Bill A10500/S9451 updates the law, balancing the needs of consumers, artists, venues, and other industry players, and keeps New York’s live event industry up and running, allowing event goers to continue buying tickets and attending the events they want to see.