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In 2001, the European Commission concluded an agreement with FIFA and FIFPro concerning the way in which football and European law related to one another. The direct cause for this was the Bosman ruling, whereby the European Court of Justice decided that the position of professional football players was no different to that of ordinary employees within the European Union.

As a consequence of the agreement, rules have been formulated, partly in order to protect the stability of contracts in football, which – with the permission of the European Commission – also take into account the specificities of sport. These rules are known as the Regulations for the Status and Transfer of Players (FIFA RSTP).

These regulations determine specific conditions under which clubs can transfer players and what happens if these rules are breached. In principle, the FIFA rules concern transfers with an international character. The regulations also contain provisions for the compensation of the costs of training and a solidarity mechanism for young players. These relate to payments which clubs must pay as a form of training compensation when players are transferred. The protection of young players is an extremely important item in the regulations.

FIFA has appointed an arbitration commission, the Dispute Resolution Chamber, in order to monitor the fulfillment of these regulations. It is a joint committee consisting each time of two representatives on behalf of FIFPro, two representatives on behalf of the clubs and a chairperson appointed by FIFA.

In addition to transfer matters, the DRC is also concerned with other labour law disputes such as wage issues and it issues decisions on the question of whether or not employment contracts have been legally terminated.

Since 2002, the DRC has issued around 1000 published decisions. In the vast majority of cases, the claims of the players are awarded.

 

 

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