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Case resolution agreed with Jenson Brooksby

Case resolution agreed with Jenson Brooksby

The International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) can today confirm that an agreement has been reached with American player Jenson Brooksby, which sees their period of ineligibility reduced to 13 months. 
 
In October 2023, Brooksby - who reached a career-high world singles ranking of 33 in 2022 - was issued an 18-month suspension by an independent tribunal for missing three anti-doping tests in a 12-month period. However, new information relating to the circumstances giving rise to the missed tests - which had not previously been available to the ITIA or the independent tribunal during the initial hearing - was submitted as part of the player’s Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) appeal proceedings. 
 
On the basis of a detailed review of the new information, the ITIA, in consultation with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), determined that the player’s degree of fault for the Anti-Doping Rule Violation (ADRV) should be reassessed.  
 
Following reassessment, the ITIA, WADA, and the player’s representatives agreed that Brooksby’s fault for the ADRV was not as high as previously found by the independent tribunal, and a 13-month sanction was appropriate. The sanction will be backdated to the date of the player’s third and final missed test. As such, Brooksby’s suspension is deemed to have begun on 4 February 2023, and will end on 3 March 2024. In reaching an agreement with the ITIA, the player has withdrawn their appeal to CAS. 
 
Due to the nature of the new information disclosed, it is not possible for the ITIA to discuss the specific details behind the reassessment or offer further comment. 

FIFA introduces new regulatory framework for national dispute resolution chambers

FIFA introduces new regulatory framework for national dispute resolution chambers
  • FIFA Council approves the National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles, incorporating the new National Dispute Resolution Chamber Standard Regulations

  • Landmark modernisation of the regulatory framework for national dispute resolution chambers, which was unchanged for almost two decades

  • Revised framework to provide clarity and legal certainty

FIFA has reached a key milestone in the modernisation of the regulatory framework for national dispute resolution chambers (NDRCs) following the approval by the FIFA Council in December 2023 of the National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles, which incorporate the new National Dispute Resolution Chamber Standard Regulations.

The regulatory framework for NDRCs was unchanged for almost two decades, and it thus became increasingly evident that it no longer served the current needs of all football stakeholders.

This new regulatory framework for NDRCs has been thoroughly discussed with stakeholders from the professional game, whose expertise and commitment have been pivotal in the adaptation of the relevant framework.

The key objectives of the revised framework are to provide clarity and the necessary legal certainty with regard to jurisdiction, structure, applicable requirements and potential formal and permanent recognition by FIFA of existing NDRCs.

The new relevant regulatory framework consists of the National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles, which establish, inter alia, the required standards for a national dispute resolution system to be recognised by FIFA and the revised National Dispute Resolution Chamber Standard Regulations, which are designed to assist member associations with the establishment of procedural rules to govern the organisation, composition and functions of an NDRC.

FIFA will continue improving the FIFA regulations in line with the Strategic Objectives for the Global Game: 2023-2027.

The National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles and the accompanying Annexe (National Dispute Resolution Chamber Standard Regulations), the revised edition of the Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players, as well as the Explanatory Notes on the New Regulatory Framework for National Dispute Resolution Chambers are available on legal.fifa.com.

National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles

Explanatory Notes on the New Regulatory Framework for National Dispute Resolution Chambers

Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players

Circular no. 1876 - National Dispute Resolution Chamber: new Recognition Principles and Standard Regulations

Circular no. 1876 - National Dispute Resolution Chamber: new Recognition Principles and Standard Regulations

TO THE MEMBER ASSOCIATIONS OF FIFA

Circular no. 1876

Zurich, 18 January 2024

National Dispute Resolution Chamber: new Recognition Principles and Standard Regulations

Dear Sir or Madam,

We are pleased to inform you that at its meeting on 17 December 2023, the FIFA Council approved the National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles, incorporating the new National Dispute Resolution Chamber Standard Regulations. In this context, the following paragraphs set out the amendments to the FIFA regulatory framework for your information. 

Regulatory framework to operate national dispute resolution chambers

a. General overview

The Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players (RSTP) have long recognised that instead of submitting employment-related disputes to FIFA or seeking redress before a civil court, parties may opt to submit such disputes to a national dispute resolution system, provided that the system meets minimum and fundamental procedural requirements. A national dispute resolution system for employment-related disputes is colloquially known as a “national dispute resolution chamber” or an “NDRC

In this context, FIFA circular no. 1010 of 20 December 2005 defined these minimal procedural requirements, and in 2007, FIFA enacted the National Dispute Resolution Chamber Standard Regulations to serve as guidelines for member associations when establishing a national dispute resolution system.

This regulatory framework remained unchanged for almost two decades. It therefore become increasingly evident that it had become outdated and that it no longer served the current needs of all football stakeholders.

Modernising the football regulatory framework has been one of FIFA’s key pillars since the launch of FIFA 2.0 and improving the FIFA regulations remains a key objective, being also part of the Strategic Objectives for the Global Game: 2023-2027. For this reason, over the past months, the regulatory framework for NDRCs has been modernised and revised in cooperation with all football stakeholders. 

The key objectives of this revised framework, which derogates the 2005 and 2007 FIFA provisions in this field, are to provide clarity and the necessary legal certainty with regard to the jurisdiction, structure, applicable requirements and a possible formal, permanent recognition by FIFA of existing NDRCs.

The new relevant regulatory framework consists of the following:

1. National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles, which establish:

  • the required standards for a national dispute resolution system to be recognised by FIFA;
  • the recognition procedure of an NDRC at FIFA level;
  • the requirements FIFA applies to accept jurisdiction of an NDRC;
  • the process for the renewal of recognition of an NDRC;
  • the process for the revocation of recognition of an NDRC;
  • the publication of a list of the NDRCs that have obtained valid recognition, together with the period of recognition; and
  • disciplinary tools to ensure compliance with the proposed regulatory framework.

2. Revised National Dispute Resolution Chamber Standard Regulations, which are included as an Annexe to the National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles and which:

  • constitute a generic sample of applicable provisions, which meet the procedural requirements as per the National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles;
  • are designed to assist member associations with the establishment of procedural rules to govern the organisation, composition and functions of an NDRC;
  • clarify that any procedural regulations of an NDRC must comply with the standards set out in the National Dispute Resolution Chamber Standard Regulations, unless a deviation has been validly agreed within a collective bargaining agreement; and
  • clarify in which provisions the National Dispute Resolution Chamber Standard Regulations give a member association scope to define the exact regulatory or procedural framework of an NDRC with flexibility.

b. Entry into force of the National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles

Articles 1 to 3 and 6 to 10 of the National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles, which relate to the NDRC recognition process, will enter into force on 1 February 2024.

In order to provide a transition period until the new requirements and a possible recognition of an NDRC fully apply, the remaining provisions of the new regulatory framework will enter into force on 1 January 2025.

Member associations, which currently operate an NDRC, have until 1 June 2024 to submit a formal request for recognition of their NDRC to FIFA, should they wish that their NDRC continue operating as a formally recognised NDRC under the new regulatory framework.

Amendments to the Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players

Due to the new regulatory framework for NDRCs, certain amendments and additions to the RSTP have to be introduced.

They are of a technical nature only and relate to the requirements under which FIFA may cede jurisdiction in light of an existing and recognised NDRC.

In particular, the relevant amendments concern article 22 paragraph 1 b) and c); article 26 paragraph 1 c) (new); article 26 paragraph 4; and article 29.

The amendments to the RSTP will come into force on 1 February 2024.

The National Dispute Resolution Chamber Recognition Principles and its Annexe (National Dispute Resolution Chamber Standard Regulations), the revised edition of the RSTP, as well as the Explanatory Notes on the New Regulatory Framework for National Dispute Resolution Chambers are available on legal.fifa.com.

Please do not hesitate to contact Jan Kleiner, Director Football Regulatory, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have any questions in this regard.

We thank you for taking note of the above and for informing your affiliated clubs accordingly.

Yours faithfully,

FÉDÉRATION INTERNATIONALE

DE FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION

CAS decision rules in favour of Yves Diba in absence of sufficient NDRC in DR Congo

CAS decision rules in favour of Yves Diba in absence of sufficient NDRC in DR Congo
  • CAS ruled that the Football Federation of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (FECOFA) committed a denial of justice against former international Yves Diba

  • Diba had filed a claim in relation to an employment contract dispute and, with it being of a national dimension, he had no choice but to file his claim with FECOFA

  • Faced with this silence and inaction, Diba turned to CAS in July 2022 and filed a claim against FECOFA for denial of justice

A significant decision from the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) ruled in favour of a Congolese footballer who had previously been denied justice due to the lack of a sufficient National Dispute Resolution Chamber (NDRC) in DR Congo.

In a recent award, CAS ruled that the Football Federation of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (FECOFA) committed a denial of justice against former international Yves Diba.

In October 2021, Diba filed a claim in relation to an employment contract dispute he had with AS Vita, a club in DR Congo’s top-flight. With the dispute being of a national dimension, Diba had no choice but to file his claim with FECOFA, who, as per its own statutes, were obliged to adjudicate.

Despite several written reminders sent by Diba, FECOFA failed to formally open a procedure in order to pass a decision. Faced with this silence and inaction, Diba turned to CAS in July 2022 and filed a claim against FECOFA for denial of justice.

CAS sided with the 20-time DR Congo international and ruled that such an unjustified delay in passing a decision constituted a denial of justice. They ordered FECOFA to promptly deal with the claim to swiftly render a decision and ruled that FECOFA must pay all costs in relation to the CAS procedure.

FIFPRO Legal Director Roy Vermeer said: “Yves Diba’s experience is not an isolated case – denial of justice is a recurring issue faced by too many players in too many national football associations.

A number of national football associations around the world do not provide for national dispute resolution chambers that respect players’ rights, and too often the chambers that exist on paper are actually not operative.”

A lack of a proper NDRC can have severe consequences for players at domestic level, leaving them forced into a system that does not guarantee fair proceedings. It can mean abusive behaviour can go unchallenged and breach of contracts are allowed to flourish in complete impunity.

Vermeer said: “If a national football association creates an NDRC, it must simply ensure that it complies with the principles established by FIFA. This not only protects players’ rights, but also provides for a healthy football economy and ecosystem.”

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