2016 was a great year for Brazil, especially because it hosted the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, which has brought many good things: thousands of sports enthusiasts came to Rio de Janeiro to see high profile athletes; others just came for a good caipirinha on the Copacabana Beach; and, of course, many athletes from different countries…

No other sport event has attracted as much attention recently as the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio (Rio 2016). Due to the international scale, high stakes involved, close emotional attachments as well as the increased publicity, Rio 2016 came under close scrutiny from all kinds of stakeholders. Just like in old times (remember boycotts of…

Claudia Pechstein, 44, is a well-known speed skater – she has won 60 medals at international championships and at the Olympics since 1992. However, the media coverage on her seven year juridical battle against a two year suspension imposed on her for a disputed doping rules violation has put her into the spotlight even more…

There are a multitude of jurisdictional issues being faced by the newly developed Sports arbitration sector, which has gained popularity primarily since nearly all major Sports Bodies have made it a mandatory part of participating in events. This issue has been a constant bone of contention between athletes, who wish to be given more choice…

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) is pleased to host a launch for a new book by Despina Mavromati & Matthieu Reeb, “The Code of the Court of Arbitration for Sport: Commentary, Cases and Materials”. The book comprehensively analyses the rules of the CAS Code within the more general context of international arbitration. Each…

co-authored by Georg von Segesser and Mirina Grosz, Schellenberg Wittmer Ltd. In a recent decision, the Swiss Federal Tribunal rejected an appeal to set aside a final award of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (“CAS”) (Decision of the Swiss Federal Tribunal (“DFT”) of 11 June 2014, 4A_178/2014). The appellant, a professional cyclist who faced…

By Georg von Segesser / Elisabeth Leimbacher / Katherine Bell, Schellenberg Wittmer Ltd. In two almost identical German language decisions dated 27 March 2014 (Decisions 4A_362/2013 and 4A_448/2013) the Swiss Federal Supreme Court (“Supreme Court”) considered that the reliance on an illegally obtained video recording in a CAS award does not violate public policy (these…

On 28 February 2014, the Regional Court of Munich rendered a decision in the matter opposing German speed skater Claudia Pechstein to the ISU (Judgment of the Regional Court of Munich I, Case Number 37 O 28331/12; the judgment is not final). This decision is sending waves through the sports arbitration community. In a matter…

During a bitter battle with anti-doping authorities, international cycling champion Lance Armstrong publicly campaigned against the anti-doping arbitration process. Armstrong’s offensive provides insights into widespread misconceptions about arbitration. On 20 August 2012, a U.S. Federal District Court dismissed Armstrong’s petition to enjoin the U.S. Anti Doping Agency (USADA) from further pursuing allegations that he was part…

For those of us in the arbitration world, the closing ceremony which took place on 12 August 2012 not only marked the end of the London Olympic Games. It also signalled the conclusion of the jurisdiction of the Court of Arbitration for Sport’s (‘CAS’) Ad hoc division (the ‘CAS AHD’) (as it will not be…

With its decision of 27 March 2012, the Swiss Federal Supreme Court held unlawful a disciplinary sanction by which FIFA threatened the football player Matuzalem with a lifetime ban in case he failed to pay a damage claim of his former club and employer. By an earlier decision of the CAS, Francelino da Silva Matuzalem,…

At its session of 15 November 2011, the International Council of Arbitration for Sports (ICAS) amended Article 14 of the Statutes of the bodies working for the settlement of Sport-related Disputes (Article S14) and abandoned the old regime which provided that with regard to the list of CAS arbitrators, the ICAS had to respect a…

In its decision 4A_162/2011 of 20 July 2011, which was published on 2 September 2011, the Swiss Federal Supreme Court elaborated on the content of – and limits to – the right of parties to call witnesses. The arbitration which gave rise to the decision was between the Jamaica Football Federation and its former coach,…

In a post dated March 2, 2011, I reported about a Swiss Supreme Court decision of February 20, 2009 where the Supreme Court had confirmed a CAS award which deemed an appeal withdrawn after the appellant had failed to pay the advance on costs. I indicated that I did not know what had happened to…

Sports arbitration is becoming an increasingly important field. In Switzerland, where the Court for Arbitration for Sports is located, the Swiss Supreme Court is seeing lately nearly half of its cases coming from the CAS. Sports arbitration, however, gives rise to a specific concern with respect to the issue of consent. Often, athletes find themselves…

In a decision dated 10 February 2010 (4A_612/2009), the Swiss Federal Tribunal rejected a petition to set aside a November 2009 CAS Award against German speed-skater Claudia Pechstein. The Federal Tribunal took some unusual procedural steps – including foregoing the usual exchange of written pleadings – to speed up the proceedings and to decide the…