international sports justice

International Sports Law and the Court of Arbitration for Sport (TAS-CAS)

The main courts, sports bodies and international federations

A NECESSARY SUPPORT FOR ATHLETES before international sports bodies AND federations

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (TAS-CAS),  the FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber (DRC), the FIFA Player Status or Discipline Committee, the FIBA ​​Appeal Chamber and other International Federations, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), the Council of Europe, are jurisdictions and international sporting bodies before which the Cabinet BERTRAND regularly represents and defends its clients athletes, players, coaches and clubs, professional or amateur, in the context of international sports litigation.

Sport is universal. Athletes practice their activities abroad, without borders. International events are endless.
The international dimension of sport therefore now requires a good knowledge of international sporting laws and regulations in order to give advice or to face a dispute before aninternational sport federation or an arbitration chamber.
The lawyers of Cabinet BERTRAND regularly act and pledge before the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne, or in front of international federation bodies (as the Dispute Resolution Chamber or the FIFA Players' Status Committee) for any sporting dispute relating to theexecution or the termination of an employment contract player or coach, ITC, to a transfer or training compensation, to elections, or related to disciplinary measures (suspension, fine, penalties) or doping.

CAS: Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne (Switzerland)

The CAS, what is it?

The CAS is an independent institution providing international sport with an organization capable of settling international disputes related to sport.

The CAS was created in 1984 and has nearly 300 arbitrators chosen for their specific knowledge of arbitration and sports law. They come from more than 80 different countries.

About 300 procedures are recorded by the CAS each year.

What is the mission of SAD?

The mission of the CAS is to settle legal disputes, of an international character, arising in the field of sport.

He pronounces arbitral awards which have the same enforceability as judgments of ordinary courts.

What is the field of competence of the CAS?

All international disputes having a direct or indirect link with sport can be submitted to the CAS, whether of a commercial nature (sponsorship contract, ...) or disciplinary (doping case, ...).

Any natural or legal person with civil capacity can apply to the CAS (athletes, clubs, sports federations, organizers of sports events, sponsors, etc.).

For a dispute to be submitted to arbitration, the parties must have agreed in writing. This clause must be inserted in a contract or in the regulations of a sports organization.

The parties may agree in advance to submit a possible future dispute to arbitration, but they may also agree to resort to the CAS after the dispute has arisen.

Court of Arbitration for Sport - CAS

The TAS can intervene in two hypotheses

On the one hand, for disputes resulting from contractual relations or unlawful acts, the ordinary arbitration procedure is applicable.
On the other hand, for disputes resulting from decisions taken at first instance by international sporting bodies (FIFA, UCI, etc.), the appeal arbitration procedure is applicable.
He can also help the parties to find an amicable solution to their dispute through mediation when this procedure is possible.
The CAS also provides advisory opinions on legal matters related to sport.
The CAS finally sets up non-permanent courts. This is the case for the Olympic Games, the Commonwealth Games, the World Cup of Football and Rugby, the Euro Football, etc. To take into account the circumstances linked to such events, special rules of procedure are enacted on each occasion.

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FIFA sports committees

The FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber

The Dispute Resolution Chamber is the FIFA body responsible for arbitration and dispute resolution through equal representation of players and clubs.

The procedure is free. Disputes falling within its jurisdiction are those of an international nature between clubs and players as well as those relating to training compensation and the solidarity mechanism between clubs.


The Players' Status Committee of FIFA

The Players' Status Committee establishes and ensures that the Regulations regarding the Status and Transfer of Players are respected.

The Players' Status Committee is empowered to settle any dispute of an international dimension between a club or an association and a coach relating to work, unless an independent arbitral tribunal guaranteeing a fair procedure exists at national level.



The Basketball Arbitral Tribunal (BAT)

In 2006, FIBA ​​created an Independent Arbitral Tribunal, first named FIBA ​​Arbitral Tribunal (TAF), then Basketball Arbitration Tribunal (BAT), for the simple, fast and inexpensive resolution of disputes arising in the world of basketball and for which FIBA ​​(or its Zones) is not a party. The parties must have agreed in writing to bring their dispute to the BAT. Its primary role is to resolve disputes between clubs, players and agents.
Any decision of the BAT remains final and binds the parties as soon as the decision has been notified to them. It is recommended that parties who wish to bring their disputes to the BAT to include the following arbitration clause in their contracts when possible: "Any dispute that arises from or in connection with this contract must be submitted to the Basketball Arbitral Tribunal (BAT) in Geneva (Switzerland) and must be resolved in accordance with the BAT Arbitration Rules by a single arbitrator appointed by the president of BAT. 

The place of arbitration shall be Geneva (Switzerland).

The arbitration shall be governed by Chapter 12 of the Federal Law on Private International Law, regardless of the domicile of the parties concerned. The language of the arbitration will be English. The referee must rule ex aequo et bono."

(BAT Arbitration Rules, article 0.3)

The European Union

The Court of Justice of the European Union

There are two ways for a case to go to the CJEU:
  • Either the question is asked by the European Commission itself;
  • Either a Preliminary Question is asked by a French court, as in the Bernard case recently.

Labor and contract law

Sports and doping litigation

Sporting Career

Taxation of athletes

Image rights and sponsorship

International law and CAS