Sweepstakes and Prize Contests

Thrift McLemore understands that sweepstakes events and prize contests are used by companies and websites to attract customers, increase brand recognition and drive sales. Unfortunately, many business owners are unaware of the many federal and state laws pertaining to these contests and may face criminal charges or penalties. Our skilled business attorneys understand these rules and regulations and work with clients to assure that their events comply with these laws or are exempt from them.

Event Structures

Under both federal and Georgia laws, non-government lotteries are illegal. For this reason it is critical that the structure of sweepstakes and prize contests are designed so that they do not meet the legal definition of a lottery. Some states require that some contests be registered and may prohibit certain practices. In addition, the government may apply restrictions or limits to lawful promotions, such as geographical or the value of the prize. This specific issue has become more problematic due to internet and mobile technology as well as social media platforms.

If errors are made in the structure of these contests the sponsors may face a variety of problems, including government investigation, regulatory enforcement actions, civil lawsuits and criminal sanctions. Some sponsors choose to work with marketing firms to administer the promotion, but this will not shield them from liability if a problem with the sweepstakes or prize contest is found.



How Thrift McLemore Can Help

Structuring a sweepstakes or prize contest that meets all applicable laws and regulations is difficult. Our expert business attorneys routinely assist clients in developing and administering compliant events and minimize risk. Our services include:

  • Creating and/or analyzing the structure of your sweepstakes;
  • Advising on alternative methods of entry and equal dignity;
  • Conducting a legal compliance review of any marketing materials and websites used for the event;
  • Drafting sweepstakes rules and disclosures, terms and conditions;
  • Reviewing and advising on privacy and data collection concerns;
  • Preparing winner affidavits and releases and submitting winners list to appropriate governmental entities;
  • Handling legal issues relating to sponsorship and licensing contracts;
  • Drafting prize fulfillment agreements; and
  • Advising on the tax implications of the contest.

Our Aim

Our aim is to help you structure, administer and conclude your sweepstakes or prize contest that is compliant with all relevant state and federal laws. Our attorneys will assist in this process to assure that the event is successful.

Have a Query?

Need more information or have legal questions? Contact us directly at 678-784-4150.

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  • 1000 Parkwood Cir. SE, Ste. 375 Atlanta, GA 30339
  • Tel: (678) 784-4150
  • Fax: (678) 623-5872


  • 3646 Vineville Avenue Macon, GA 31204
  • Tel: (478) 663-9664
  • Fax: (678) 623-5872

Fort Lauderdale

  • 501 East Las Olas Blvd., Ste. 200 Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301
  • Tel: (954) 281-5578
  • Fax: (954) 281-5568

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