Lessons from Sports Arbitrations: Campbell-Brown v. JAAA & IAAF [World Sports Update (Third Quarter 2014)]

Author: Michael L. Buckner, Esquire (Shareholder)

Buckner begins a series identifying lessons and best practices from published internationals sports arbitration awards, decisions and cases that can be used by International Federations (IFs), National Olympic Committees (NOCs), National Federations and Organizing Committees for the Olympic Games (OCOGs) to ensure compliance with the Olympic Charter, as well as pertinent IF, NOC, National Federation and OCOG statutes, practices and activities.


Arbitration Tribunal

Court of Arbitration for Sport


Award, Case or Decision

CAS 2014/A/3487 Veronica Campbell-Brown v. The Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) & The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF)


Award date

April 10, 2014


Applicable Olympic Charter Rule or Other Code, Statute or Bylaw

The Olympic Charter requires, directly or indirectly, IFs (R 25 and 43 and BLR 45-1.7), NOCs (R 27-2-2.6 and 43), National Federations (R 29 and 43) and other affiliated entities (R 43) to adopt and implement the World Anti-Doping Code.


Lesson or Best Practice

On February 12, 2014, Veronica Campbell-Brown filed an appeal against the February 10, 2014, decision rendered by the International Association of Athletics Federations (the “IAAF”) Doping Review Board, as well as the February 10, 2014, decision rendered by the Jamaican Athletics Administrative Association (the “JAAA”) Disciplinary Panel, for an alleged anti-doping violation. The CAS panel ruled the IAAF failed to discharge the burden of establishing Campbell-Brown committed an anti-doping violation. The panel upheld the athlete’s appeal and set aside the decisions of the IAAF and JAAA.

IFs and National Federations should be reminded of Article 3.2-3.2.2 of the World Anti-Doping Code, which states: “If the Athlete or other Person establishes that a departure from another International Standard or other antidoping rule or policy which could reasonably have caused the Adverse Analytical Finding or other anti-doping rule violation occurred, then the Anti-Doping Organization shall have the burden to establish that such departure did not cause the Adverse Analytical Finding or the factual basis for the anti-doping rule violation”. The CAS panel determined the strictness the World Anti-Doping Code places on athletes also must be applied to Anti-Doping Organizations (ADOs) when organizations implement the World Anti-Doping Code. The panel’s award strongly suggests:

  1. The integrity of the process and procedures is a core element of an anti-doping program.
  2. ADOs may not rely on the evidentiary standards provided in the World Anti-Doping Code to resolve departures from sample collection procedures, anti-doping program protocols and international testing standards that would cast doubt on the reliability of the test results.

As a result, Buckner recommends ADOs, IFs and National Federations conduct annual reviews to ensure their anti-doping programs are compliant with the World Anti-Doping Code, international testing standards and other relevant anti-doping protocols.

The published award can be reviewed by clicking here (the link will take you to the CAS website).

Please contact Michael L. Buckner, Buckner shareholder, at +1-954-941-1844 or for assistance with ensuring compliance with the Olympic Charter and other sports statutes, bylaws and regulations.