Some St. Louis Rams Season Ticket Holders Will Get To Keep Their Seat Rights In Los Angeles
The Rams may have won against Seattle on Sunday, but they weren't so lucky Wednesday, when a federal judge ruled against them, and in favor of the St. Louisians who had purchased personal seat licenses while the team was still in Missouri. U.S. District Judge Stephen N. Limbaugh Jr. ruled that some of those PSLs (there were two different contracts) are still valid despite the move, meaning that their holders retain the right to purchase season tickets here in L.A. The Rams will have to refund deposits for the others, although the amount has not yet been specified, according to Fox 2 St. Louis.
The Rams returned to Los Angeles this year after 21 seasons in the Gateway City. Approximately 46,000 fans had PSLs at the time of the switch, and multiple PSL-related lawsuits were filed after the Rams announced their move. Those three lawsuits were later consolidated into a single case.
PSLs, as they are known, guarantee fans the right to purchase season tickets for a particular seat in a stadium. It's a one-time fee, and then tickets still have to be purchased on top of it every year.
The lawsuits argued that the PSLs were supposed to have allowed their holders to be able to purchase tickets through the 2024 season, and that the move to L.A. rendered them valueless nine years early, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
The St. Louis Rams first started selling PSLs in 1995, the year they moved to St. Louis from L.A. Those PSLs would "entitle the purchaser to buy one season ticket per year in the designated section of the stadium (now known as the Edward Jones Dome at America’s Center) through the 2024 season," according to the lawsuit. Though prices varied depending on where in the stadium the seats were located, the average was $2,085—meaning that after selling 46,000 initial PSLs, the Rams may have made as much as $96 million, again, according to the lawsuit.
According to another Post-Dispatch article, there were two separate types of PSLs sold, some through Rams ticketing agent, FANS Inc., and others sold directly by the Rams. Although the contracts for each differ slightly, they both stipulate that the Rams must “use its best efforts” to provide seats for PSL holders if they move to a different venue. This is why there are two different classes of PSLs, and where things get a little more complicated, as the Post-Dispatch explains:
The judge ruled that people who bought PSLs from FANS cannot buy season tickets because the FANS contract clearly states that a Rams relocation would terminate the contract, thus rendering the “best efforts” language moot. However, the Rams must “use its best efforts” to provide season tickets for people who bought PSLs directly from the team, because that particular contract never states the PSL agreement is terminated by relocation.
According to the L.A. Times, at least two other lawsuits on the topic are still pending.