the International Council of Arbitration for Sport (“ICAS”) issued a media release regarding the amendments to the Code of Sports-related Arbitration (“the CAS Code”). These amendments include amendments to the statutes of ICAS and the procedural rules for the Court of Arbitration for Sport arbitrations and come into force on 1 November 2022.
Below are the key takeaways to the CAS Code amendments:
Amendments to the statutes of ICAS
- Under Article S4, the number of ICAS members has increased from 20 to 22 members to guarantee a better representation of football stakeholders.
- Under Article S5, ICAS may also grant the title of Honorary Member to any former CAS member who has made an exceptional contribution to the development of ICAS or CAS.
- A new football legal aid fund is created under Article S6 para 9 to help individuals without sufficient financial means to access CAS arbitration in football-related disputes.
- Under Article 13, the number of CAS arbitrators was increased from 150 to 300. Those CAS arbitrators and mediators that were not reappointed by ICAS will be informed accordingly.
Amendments to the Procedural Rules
- In Rule 31, the filing of the request for arbitration, the statement of appeal and other written submissions via the CAS e-filing platform are now accepted. The filing of these are subject to the conditions set out in the CAS guidelines on electronic filing.
- If there is a replacement of a sole arbitrator by a 3-member Panel as provided in Rule 36, the Claimant/Appellant shall replace the arbitrator within the prescribed time. The failure of which shall result in the non-initiation or termination of the arbitration.
- The President of the Division has the power to determine the number of arbitrators if it is not specified in the arbitration agreement and the parties have not agreed to a sole arbitrator at the outset of the procedure under Rule 40.1.
- In a situation where the President of the Division decides to submit the appeal to a 3-member Panel, the Appellant shall appoint an arbitrator within the prescribed time limit, failing which the appeal shall be deemed withdrawn under Rule 50.
- When appointing the sole arbitrator and president of the panel under Rule 54, the President of the Division shall take into account the expertise, availability, equality and turnover of the arbitrators. If there is a special list of arbitrators for a particular sport or event, the sole arbitrator or the president of the panel shall be appointed from said list, unless the parties or the President of the Division decides otherwise due to exceptional circumstances.
- In Rule 56, the Parties have the discretion to request a case management conference. In the case management conference, the Panel will discuss the procedural rules, the preparation of the hearing and any issues relating to the taking of evidence with the parties.
- Rule 59 allows the Panel to extend communication time of the operative of the award up to a maximum of four months after the closing of evidentiary proceedings upon request. If this is not complied with by the Panel, they may be removed accordingly and the arbitrators’ fees may be reduced on a case-by-case basis. The President of the Division shall inform the parties of the situation and determine if an ultimate time is granted to the Panel or which particular measures are taken.
- The amendment to Rule 64.4 provides that the CAS Court Office shall determine the final account of the arbitration costs and provide a detailed breakdown of each arbitrator’s costs, fees and administrative costs. The final account of the arbitration costs shall be notified to the parties within a reasonable time.