horseracing's new Anti-Doping Arbitration proceduresThere are new anti-doping arbitration procedures on the horizon. The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority (HISA) has implemented a national set of rules that applies to every thoroughbred racing participant and racetrack facility. HISA's Racetrack Safety Program goes into effect July 1, 2022, with trainers, jockeys, horsemen, owners, and others who interact with thoroughbred racehorses and racetracks required to register before that date. HISA's Anti-Doping and Medication Control (ADMC) Program will go into effect on January 1, 2023. 

New Anti-Doping Arbitration Procedures for Equine Doping Violations

Arbitration proceedings can be initiated after you have requested a hearing regarding an alleged equine anti-doping (EAD) violation. Hearings take place by phone or video conference unless the parties and the arbitrator agree to an in-person hearing.

Typically, the Arbitral Body will assign a sole arbitrator. However, three arbitrators may be assigned by request of the Agency if necessary due to the complexity of the case. The pool of arbitrators has no more than 10 members, all of whom are appointed for four-year terms.

Initial pre-hearing submissions must not exceed 30 double-spaced pages. They must include all evidence except testimonial evidence, summaries, and demonstrative aids that you will rely on at the hearing.

The hearing should take place no more than 60 days from the date of the formal request. The reasoned award should be issued no more than 14 days after the close of the hearing. However, you can make a request for expedited procedures when doing so is reasonably necessary to resolve the dispute before a covered horserace. As part of these new anti-doping arbitration procedures, the parties may also agree to waive oral hearings in any case.

Arbitration for ECM/Other Violations

Equine controlled medication (ECM) and other rule violations are adjudicated by the National Stewards Panel in accordance with the Rule 3000 Series and the anti-doping arbitration procedures. The National Stewards Panel will assign a single steward to hear the case unless there are exceptional circumstances that require a panel of three stewards. However, both stewards and arbitrators are to be considered arbitrators within the meaning of the Federal Arbitration Act.

Proceedings can be initiated with the appropriate Panel member by the Agency after you request a review in response to an alleged violation. Submissions must be filed on or before seven days after submitting a request for review. Submissions must not exceed 20 double-spaced pages and must include all evidence that you intend to rely upon. A C.V. and expert report must be included for each expert witness. The Agency's reply will be filed within seven days of your submission.

The steward may hold a hearing or choose to render a decision based on the written submissions alone. They will issue a reasoned award on or before 14 days after the last written submission.

Arbitration for Multiple Violations or Multiple Parties

If you have been charged with both an EAD violation and an ECM or other violation, the procedures for EAD violations apply to your case.

Disputes involving more than one covered person may be consolidated into a single matter at the Agency's discretion.

Do You Have Questions About HISA Arbitration?

If you have been accused of violating HISA rules, it's crucial that you speak with our equine anti-doping lawyers as soon as possible to discuss your arbitration options. Contact us online or call us directly at +1-207-747-5899 to schedule a free consultation.

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