Texas “Deregulates” Combat Sports Seconds

Let’s talk seconds in combat sports. Also known as cornermen. The men and women who act as a last line of defence in boxing, mixed martial arts and other full contact combative sports where brain trauma is a looming reality.

Texas has chosen to ‘deregulate’ this job. Starting September 1, 2021 anyone can be a second in a full contact combative sport in the Lone Star State.

Seconds play a crucial role. They are tasked (sometimes expressly in legislation, sometimes implicitly) with the job of ‘throwing in the towel’. Texas falls in the category of this being expressly written into law with their Administrative Code giving seconds the power to call a bout noting that “Seconds may surrender for their contestants by standing on the apron and signaling to the referee.

Imagine a fight with a one sided beating. Where the referee and ringside physicians are asleep at the switch. Its happened before. Fighters have died or never recovered from the brain trauma sustained. Seconds are sometimes the last thing standing between a fighter too tough for their own good and a terrible fate A qualified person in that spot is an asset.

Some argue, myself included, that the job requires more regulation, not less. Texas sees things differently.

Today the Texas Department of Licencing and Regulating issued the following press release noting the deregulation of seconds, matchmakers and event coordinators. Below are their full announcements:

Deregulation of Combative Sports Seconds

JULY 23, 2021

Effective September 1, 2021, the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) will no longer license Combative Sports Seconds. Until then, TDLR will continue accepting new license applications and renewals.

Texas House Bill 1560, passed during the 87th Regular Legislative Session (2021), ended licensure for Seconds. Although the TDLR Seconds license is no longer required, anyone serving as a Second must still meet the requirements listed in 16 Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 61.

A currently valid, newly issued or renewed license will not expire until September 1, 2021.

Deregulation of Combative Sports Matchmakers

JULY 23, 2021

Effective September 1, 2021, Combative Sports Matchmakers are no longer required to be licensed by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR).

Texas House Bill 1560, passed during the 87th Regular Legislative Session (2021), ended licensure for Matchmakers. TDLR will stop accepting new and renewal license applications effective immediately.

A currently valid license will not expire until September 1, 2021.


Deregulation of Combative Sports Event Coordinators

JULY 23, 2021

Effective September 1, 2021, Combative Sports Event Coordinators are no longer required to be licensed by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR).

Texas House Bill 1560, passed during the 87th Regular Legislative Session (2021), ended licensure for Event Coordinators, and TDLR will stop accepting new and renewal license applications effective immediately.

A currently valid license will not expire until September 1, 2021.


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