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Lawson v. IAAF: a view from the perspective of athletes' counsel

Track Athlete
Thursday, 16 July 2020 By Lindsay S. Brandon, Howard Jacobs

This article is part of a series of articles by LawInSport looking from different perspectives at the important issues raised in the Lawson case of how contamination and relevant thresholds are addressed by the World Anti-Doping Code.   The first article in the series was written by Jonathan Taylor QC and is available to read here: An advocate’s view on Lawson v IAAF.  

This second article is written by Howard Jacobs and Lindsay Brandon, who represent high profile athletes worldwide in anti-doping and other issues (but not Mr. Lawson in this case).   In this article, the authors examine and express their views on the decision reached by the panel in Lawson, and its potential implications for athletes in similar cases.  Specifically, the piece looks at:

  • Summary of the Lawson Decision
  • Article 10.2 of the WADA Code and Proof of Source
  • Lawson and meat contamination and findings of No Fault in CAS jurisprudence
  • The true meaning of “Proof of Source


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Written by

Lindsay Brandon

Lindsay S. Brandon

Lindsay is a practicing associate at the Law Offices of Howard L. Jacobs just outside of Los Angeles, California, where she primarily represents athletes in matters related to anti-doping rule violations before the American Arbitration Association and the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Lindsay also works with athletes (amateur, Olympic, and professional) on team selection disputes, issues related to the U.S. Center for SafeSport, and she has consulted with both athletes and sporting federations on matters impacting athletes at-large. Prior to practicing sports law, Lindsay wrote for several publications in the United States, a majority of which focused on the intersectionality of law, social justice, and sports. Lindsay has also published pieces for the World Sports Advocate and the International Sports Law Journal.

Lindsay received her B.A. from Claremont McKenna College (Claremont, California), her J.D. from Seattle University (Seattle, Washington), and her LL.M. in International Sports Law from St. John’s University (New York, New York).

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Howard Jacobs

Howard Jacobs

Howard Jacobs has been identified by leading national and international publications as one of the leading sports lawyers in the world. He is an athlete’s lawyer and not a sports agent. He represents athletes in all types of disputes, with a particular focus on the defense of athletes charged with doping and other disciplinary offenses. He has represented over 250 professional athletes, Olympic athletes and amateur athletes in disputes involving doping, salary issues, team selection issues, SafeSport issues, endorsements, unauthorized use of name and likeness, and other matters. Howard Jacobs has been consistently listed by the Chambers Guide as one of the top ranked lawyers in the United States for athletic disputes.  In addition to his law practice, Howard Jacobs is an Adjunct Professor at Southwestern Law School in Los Angeles, where he teaches sports law.

As an athlete advocate, Howard provides a voice for athletes and others in all types of disputes; he has argued many landmark cases for athletes, winning cases that have set precedents and established better and more fair practices. Because of this, Howard Jacobs is a sought after expert on sports law issues.

Howard graduated from Florida State University and William and Mary Law School. He ran cross country and track & field for Florida State University and competed as a professional triathlete during law school. He currently resides in Southern California with his wife, two children, a gentle giant of a ridgeback mix, an aussiedoodle puppy and a garage full of bicycles.

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