Recent Updates to the Canadian Sport Dispute Resolution Code

Published October 12, 2023

Recently, the Canadian Sport Dispute Resolution Code (the Code) was updated. Effective October 1st, 2023, these changes largely reflect the evolving involvement of the Sport Dispute Resolution Centre of Canada (SDRCC) in the Office of the Sport Integrity Commissioner (OSIC) process.

Some of the changes are nominal, such as the extension of the deadline to file a request to the Ordinary Tribunal to 31 days, from the previous 30-day limit. There are some clarifications and adjustments within the definition section. Other terms have been added, such as addressing the definition of Interested Party and the different roles and entitles under the OSIC process.

Most of the substantial changes reflect the newly implemented OSIC process and the role of the SDRCC in hearing certain matters arising out of this process. Changes include section 8.6(f), which is a new provision outlining the specific role of the Safeguarding Tribunal involving the modification of sanctions imposed by the Director of Sanctions and Outcomes (DSO). Another notable change is section 4.6(e), which now requires that any sanction restricting the eligibility of a party to participate be immediately recorded in Abuse-Free Sport registry. This registry, which is not yet public, is managed by the OSIC. Similarly, section 4.9(b) now allows the DSO to approve any settlement pursuant to the Abuse Free Sport review.

There is guidance outlining the requirements to be met before a decision is released publicly and when a decision is not ineligible to be released publicly.

In total, approximately 40 changes were made to the Code. A full record of the updates is available here. This chart identifies the 2022 Code and the corresponding changes that were recently made in the 2023 update.

Please feel free to contact Will Russell at wrussel@sportlaw.ca or Donny Jackson at djackson@sportlaw.ca if you have any questions regarding the recent revisions to the Code.

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