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World Sports Advocate

Volume: 15 Issue: 5
(May 2017)


The proposed investment in Gloucester Rugby by businessman Mohed Altrad who also owns French club Montpellier Hérault Rugby, which was abandoned after Premiership Rugby rejected Altrad’s plan to purchase a 45% stake in the club at a board meeting held on 11 April 2017 and whose counter proposal of a 20% shareholding prompted Altrad to withdraw from the deal, highlights the growing issue relating to the common ownership of professional sports teams being faced in rugby and football. / read more

The European Athletics Council has accepted recommendations that could lead to the rewriting of the world and European records lists, states a press release published on the International Association of Athletics Federations (‘IAAF’) website on 1 May 2017. The recommendations, put forward in a project team report, call for higher technical standards, increased doping control measures and new personal integrity requirements for record holders, and will now be forwarded to the IAAF with the recommendation that the two organisations coordinate the implementation of new record ratification rules. / read more


The UK’s Spring Budget 20171 announced that HMRC will publish guidelines for employers to enable better compliance with the long established image rights practice in the UK. France on the other hand has introduced a new possibility into the Sports Code on image rights licensing by the employer alongside the employment contract2. Claudia Massa of Avens and Michel Collet of CMS Bureau Francis Lefebvre explore in this article the pros and cons of this new possibility introduced into the French legal and tax environment for sportsmen and women, with a focus on its application within football. / read more

On 12 April 2017, the Spanish competition authority (Comisión Nacional de los Mercados y la Competencia) issued a press release about its decision to fine the league running the national first division of professional basketball in Spain, known as the ACB (Asociación de Clubes de Baloncesto, the basketball club association). The Spanish competition authority (‘SCA’) has imposed a €400,000 fine on the ACB for impairing access to the first division for basketball teams that have been promoted from the second tier (Liga LEB ORO) but have never before participated in the ACB League. The SCA having made the decision available only a few days before the May issue of World Sports Advocate went to print, José Páez, Lawyer at Nebot & Páez Abogados, provides the key facts and findings of the decision, ahead of a full article and analysis which will be published in the June issue of this publication. / read more

As the first few practical cases have been established relating to Germany’s anti-doping legislation, Simon Karlin, Associate Counsel at Lentze Stopper Rechtsanwaelte, explains the measures provided in Germany’s anti-doping legislation, the potential legal issues, the possible impact on the relationship between criminal proceedings and sports jurisdiction and assesses whether Germany’s anti-doping legislation may solve the hidden doping problem1. / read more

In response to a binding consultation made by La Liga, the Spanish tax authorities have eliminated the severe taxation that until now was imposed on the payment of buy-out clauses of professional football players. Enric Ripoll González, a Lawyer at Ruiz-Huerta & Crespo Sports Lawyers, analyses in detail the clarity provided by the Spanish tax authorities on the tax treatment of buy-out clauses. / read more

On 3 April 2017, the International Association of Athletics Federations (‘IAAF’) issued a statement confirming that it has been a victim of a cyber attack by Fancy Bears which it believes has compromised athletes’ Therapeutic Use Exemption applications. According to the statement the attack was detected during a proactive investigation carried out by a cyber incident response firm who were undertaking a technical investigation across IAAF systems. In light of these revelations and a similar attack that compromised the World Anti-Doping Agency’s systems during the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Miranda Joseph and Paul Glass of Taylor Wessing discuss the importance of cyber security for sporting and data integrity. / read more

Paola Pliego is a Mexican Fencer, who has competed internationally at a high level. Paola qualified for the Olympics for the first time in her career this past summer and was expected to be a podium contender in Rio. But just a few days before the Olympics her lifelong dream of a medal was stolen from her. A false positive in a lab led to a provisional suspension that forced Paola to miss the Olympics. She was vindicated only a short time later, but too late for her to go back in time and be an Olympian. Ricardo de Buen, Founding and Managing Partner at De Buen Rodríguez Abogados and Paul J. Greene, Founder of Global Sports Advocates, both of whom were Paola’s counsel during the proceedings, discuss the unfortunate set of circumstances that transpired before the 2016 Rio Olympics and the legal proceedings before the International Fencing Federation (‘FIE’). / read more

About World Sports Advocate

The monthly law publication providing guidance on all aspects of sports law, including licensing and sports data, anti-doping and doping sanctions, TV and broadcasting rights, sport technology, players agents, disciplinary measures, sports integrity, sports betting, player contracts, intellectual property, transfer regulations, sports sponsorship and marketing, and governance, as well as coverage of key legal cases, sporting regulations and governing bodies including the IOC, UEFA and FIFA and sporting events such as London 2012. / read more

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