Skip to main content

New Bill to Create State Run MMA Fighters Pension Fund Passes Policy Committees

Assemblymember Haney’s AB 1136 will require Mixed Martial Arts promoters to set aside a portion of their ticket sales for a California state run pension fund for combat sports athletes

For immediate release:
  • Nate Allbee
  • (415) 756-0561

Sacramento, CA — Today, Assemblymember Matt Haney (D-San Francisco) along with renowned Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) champion coach Cesar Gracie and MMA referee and former pro-fighter Herb Dean celebrated the passing of AB 1136, the Mixed Martial Arts Pension Fund from both the Business and Professions Committee and the Arts, Entertainment, and Sports Committee.

See attached video from today’s announcement with Assemblymember Haney, Cesar Gracie, and Herb Dean at the State Capitol. 

MMA fighters do not have a guaranteed source of income or retirement benefits once their careers have ended and many fighters have long term injuries from their time in the ring. The MMA Pension fund will be paid from a percentage of every professional fight’s ticket sales and will only be available to fighters over the age of 50 who have fought in 14 or more fights in California. California is the national leader in MMA, hosting the most fights and most fighters of any state.

The pension fund would not be funded by State dollars. Instead, it would be financed through ticket sales, sports paraphernalia, and souvenirs. For every ticket sold, $1 would go towards the MMA Fighters Pension Fund. MMA fighters would become vested between 12-14 fights, which is around 39 scheduled rounds at Commission regulated MMA events. 

Other notable supporters of the bill include world champion MMA fighters Ronda Rousey and Urijah Faber who have been outspoken advocates of the bill since its first announcement in February. 

AB 1136 will be heard in Assembly Appropriations in the upcoming weeks for a vote. If successful, it will be voted again on the Assembly Floor and the Senate and then considered by the Governor who will decide whether the bill is signed and becomes law in 2024.