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An intervention staged by the BAC, with the support of Sport Resolutions and law firm Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (BCLP), has resulted in over £7,500 owed to British athletes being recouped following a commercial dispute.

Last year, the BAC received contact from 19 athletes relating to work for one company, which had been undertaken but unpaid. Through the BAC’s relationship with Sport Resolutions, BCLP were recruited to provide pro bono support to the athletes, with all those athletes who worked alongside BCLP having now been paid the outstanding funds.

One of the first athletes to bring the matter to the BAC’s attention was wheelchair tennis player Lucy Shuker. Following the successful resolution of all athlete cases, Lucy said:

“I’m grateful to the BAC for all their support and quick action on this matter. It really concerned me when the scope of the situation became apparent, and the BAC were fantastic in their response, going above and beyond.”

The BAC’s Athlete Support Manager, Hannah Dean, provided end-to-end support to all athletes affected by the situation, and added:

“We’re really pleased that the athletes were able to put their trust in us, and that the matter has now been settled so successfully. We know just how important additional income streams are to our members, but also that commercial opportunities can sometimes come with complex or overwhelming contractual detail, creating situations in which athletes are unsure of their rights or obligations.

“The support we can offer is expert, thorough and confidential, giving athletes the information and clarity they need to proceed with such opportunities with confidence. In this case, the support of Sport Resolutions and BCLP was second to none, and this excellent result is testament to their expertise.”

Catherine Pitre, Head of Case Management at Sport Resolutions said:

“Our Pro Bono Legal Advice and Representation Service, which originates and operates as a legacy of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, provides legal advice and assistance to athletes and individuals of limited financial means on a pro bono basis.

“We are very pleased to work together with the BAC in enabling access to justice for athletes and are very thankful to our pro bono panel members for taking time to assist athletes and help resolve matters speedily. The Service’s pro bono work is growing every year through their invaluable help.”

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner Senior Associate, Andrew Street, added.

“BCLP’s commitment to pro bono work forms an integral part of our involvement with the wider community, and we are proud to have been able to provide support through the BAC to the individual athletes impacted on this matter.

“We know how difficult the current environment can be for athletes, particularly when their incomes from commercial partners come under pressure and athletes may be unclear on the steps required to enforce their rights. We are therefore delighted for our clients that our team (also consisting of associate Charles Reed and trainee William Rowell) has been able to apply its experience in sport law through Sport Resolutions’ pro bono initiative to achieve a successful outcome on this matter.”

The BAC offers independent support to its members on a range of different issues. To access support, email support@britishathletes.org.

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