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Lex Mitior – Reduction in the Period of Ineligibility under Article 25.3 of the WADC

Manninen, Markus

Urheilu ja oikeus 2016 s. 35
29.6.2017 12:01
Alkuperäinen julkaisupäivä: 1.12.2016


Generally, the principle of tempus regit actum (principle of no retroactivity) applies in adjudicating suspected anti-doping rule violations (“ADRV”). There are, however, a few exceptions to the main rule. The most important one is the doctrine of lex mitior, according to which new substantive rules shall be applied when they are more favourable to the accused than the rules in force at the time of the alleged wrongdoing. It has been applied by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (“CAS”) from very early stages and is now codified in Article 25.2 of the World Anti-Doping Code (“WADC” or the “Code”).

The applicability of lex mitior is not limited to cases that have not
yet been fully resolved. Instead, it may also be utilised when a final ruling has been rendered but the sanction has not yet been fully served. This aspect of the doctrine has been provided for in Article 25.3 of the WADC since 2009.

The purpose of this brief article is to identify and address some potential challenges faced by the anti-doping tribunals when applying the provision. The WADC does not contain comments on Article 25.3, and there seems to be very little literature on the subject.4 Therefore, the review is based on case law. (Edilex-toimitus)

  • Urheilu ja oikeus 2016

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