Frequently Asked Questions

2021 Legislative Changes to Combative Sports

1. Did the most recent legislative session change the Texas Combative Sports Law?

Yes. House Bill 1560 (HB 1560), passed by the 87th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, revised the combative sports statute to no longer require the licensing of Seconds, Matchmakers and Event Coordinators.

The changes were effective September 1, 2021.

2. Are previously licensed Seconds, Matchmakers, and Event Coordinators eligible to work events in that capacity after the September 1, 2021, effective date?

Yes. The difference now is that they no longer need a license to do so.

3. What happens to Seconds, Matchmakers, and Event Coordinators licenses that are still active on September 1, 2021?

As of September 1, 2021, these licenses become obsolete. Although they are technically valid until expiration, the legal requirement to be licensed is no longer in effect.

4. If my license doesn’t expire until after September 1, 2021, will I get some sort of refund?

No. The application fee is for the time spent processing your application, which was completed, and is non-refundable.

5. Are Seconds completely un-regulated now that they’re no longer licensed?

No. Seconds will be required to register with TDLR at each event and will be expected to follow the rules and regulations established in Chapter 61 of Texas Administrative Code for those events.

6. Who is responsible for ensuring that Seconds comply with the rules and regulations?

Contestants may be penalized if their Seconds don’t comply with the rules and regulations in the combative sports statute and rules.

7. Are there any penalties for Seconds who don’t comply with the rules and regulations?

Not technically. However, Seconds who do not comply with the rules and regulations can be banned from assisting any contestant in the State of Texas. A complaint against a contestant may be filed with possible monetary penalties.

8. How many Seconds will a contestant be allowed to have now?

Contestants must have a minimum of two and a maximum of four seconds. This is the same as it was prior to September 1, 2021.

9. Can I use products that contain hemp or Delta-8 THC since they are legal in Texas?

While hemp was legalized in 2019 and Delta-8 THC was removed from the state’s list of controlled substances, a combative sports contestant is prohibited from testing positive for any cannabinoids. There is no distinction in the test for the type of substance in the fighter’s system. It’s possible that any amount of hemp or Delta-8 THC may trigger a positive test.

Licensing Questions

1. How can I get a Promoter license?

Please seee the Apply for a Promoter License page.

2. How do I obtain a surety bond?

You may contact an insurance company or a bonding company. You can search the Texas Department of Insurance website or call 800-578-4677 (Texas only) or 512-463-6169 to see if a specific insurance or bonding company is authorized to write bonds. To locate a bonding company check the yellow pages of the phone book under "bonds."

3. Why does a Promoter need two surety bonds?

One $15,000.00 surety bond guarantees payment of all obligations, except gross receipts taxes arising out of events promoted by the applicant.

The other $15,000.00 surety bond guarantees payment of gross receipts taxes owed for events promoted by the applicant.

Both bonds must be written by a bonding company authorized to do business in the state of Texas and shall remain in effect for four years after the effective cancellation date.

4. How do I apply to be a Referee?

Please seee the Apply for a Referee License page.

5. How do I apply to be a licensed Contestant?

Please seee the Apply for a Contestant License page.

6. Is a license required to operate a boxing gym?

No, training facilities are not required to be registered or licensed with the state.

7. Is a license/registration required to promote Amateur Combative Sports?

Yes, a registration is required. Please seee the Apply for an Amateur Combative Sports Association License page.

8. Do I need to answer all questions on the application?

Yes, you must answer all questions on the application to receive a license.

Promoter Questions

1. How does a promoter get approval for an event?

Please see the Schedule a New Combative Sports Event page for information on how to schedule a new event.

2. When may Federal Identification Card applications be completed?

Federal Identification Card applications may be completed at any time prior to competing.

Note: Federal Identification Card applications must be accompanied by 2 passport size photographs and proper fee for processing.