'Prince Law' Raises Free-Speech Red Flags, Critics Say

Law360, New York (May 11, 2016, 9:02 PM EDT) -- Minnesota is rushing to pass legislation in the wake of Prince’s death that would allow heirs to control a celebrity’s publicity rights long after their death, but critics say the bill poses First Amendment concerns that cannot be ignored.

Seventeen states have laws that grant so-called post-mortem rights of publicity, allowing an estate or heirs to stop commercial exploitation of a celebrity’s name or likeness. But Minnesota, where Prince was legally living when he suddenly died on April 21, isn’t one of them.

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