Sports arbitration—an introduction
Produced in partnership with Daniel Meagher of Winston & Strawn
Sports arbitration—an introduction

The following Arbitration practice note produced in partnership with Daniel Meagher of Winston & Strawn provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Sports arbitration—an introduction
  • Structural organisation of sport regulation and governance
  • Scope of sports arbitration and dispute resolution
  • Structures for sports arbitration and dispute resolution
  • Internal dispute resolution bodies of sports federations and associations
  • FIFA dispute resolution procedures
  • NBA and FIBA dispute resolution procedures
  • FIA dispute resolution procedures
  • Dispute resolution mechanisms created for specific sporting events

Sports arbitration—an introduction

Sports arbitration and dispute resolution will often be governed by specific rules of the relevant sports federation or association. This Practice Note therefore first sets out an overview of the structural organisation of sports regulation and governance, before going on to a high level overview of sports arbitration procedures.

Structural organisation of sport regulation and governance

Sports are typically regulated by federations and associations. Each association or federation will have governing body structures and rules by which they are organized and which will very often include provisions for the resolution of disputes arising within that sport.

Certain sports form part of the Olympic Games and the Olympic Movement. The Olympic Movement is the term used to describe ‘all organisations, athletes and other persons who agree to be guided by the Olympic Charter’ (Olympic Charter, 2015, Rule 1.1). The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is the body which oversees the Olympic Movement and generally acts as the supreme governing body of all individuals and entities which come within the Olympic Movement. Among other things, adoption of the World Anti-Doping Code (the WADA Code) is required for membership in the Olympic Movement.

Olympic sports are organized and regulated by International Sports Federations (IFs) which form part of the Olympic Movement. IFs are often divided into the groupings of ‘Summer IFs’ and ‘Winter IFs’ corresponding to the Summer and

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