Dr Ami Barav, 4-5 Gray’s Inn Square, has obtained a favourable judgment from the Paris Court of Appeal which recognises FIFA’s right to adopt regulation relating to the activity of player’s agent.
The Paris Court of Appeal has delivered a judgment on 13 April 2016 dismissing the appeal lodged by Mr Laurent Piau against the judgment of the Tribunal de Grande Instance de Rennes dated 29 August 2013.
In this case, Mr Piau contested provisions contained in several editions of the FIFA Regulations on Player’s Agents (which have now been repealed) and FIFA’s legitimacy for adopting them, alleging violations of European Union law.
In its judgment, which retains considerations of general scope, the Paris Appeal Court said there was no need to refer questions to the European Court for a preliminary ruling, and has, mainly, declared (free translation) “…the sports federations, who are familiar with the particularities of each sport…are the best placed to set up and apply regulations which satisfy the objectives of protecting the image and the ethics of football…FIFA, an international sport federation, has legitimacy to determine the rules and to ensure respect for the ethics (of the player’s agent profession) on the international level.” These regulations, the Court has underlined, constitute no hindrance to the freedom of establishment and/or the freedom to provide services within the European Union. Having been adopted with a view to the moralisation and professionalization of the player’s agent activity, restrictions on competition which may be derived from these regulations, are not appreciable since they are inherent and proportionate to the objectives sought.