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Important developments to the regulation of agents

Recently, there have been some crucial changes in the regulation of agents in the UK and Europe, both from The FA and FIFA.

What has happened?

On 30 November 2023, the Rule K Arbitration decision found certain aspects of the proposed National Football Agent Regulations (NFAR), which sought to implement FIFA's Agent Regulations (FFAR), to be in breach of UK Competition Law ("Rule K Ruling"). This decision led to The FA reconsidering its position and the inability to implement the NFAR in the UK in its proposed form.

FIFA released a circular on 30 December 2023 suggesting that certain key elements of the FFAR would be temporarily suspended until the outcome of an injunction granted by the Dortmund District Court in Germany ("FIFA Circular"). FIFA also recommended that all member associations should now suspend the equivalent provisions in their national versions of the FFAR.

On 21 December 2023, the FA confirmed its own NFARs would enter into force on 1 January. However, following the FIFA Circular, the FA published a revised version of the NFAR to reflect FIFA's announcement.


What does this mean for agents?

The FA's revised NFAR have now come into force. Many of the elements which were considered controversial of the original FFAR/NFAR regulations have been suspended or no longer apply. However, there are still important elements of the NFAR which continue to apply. For example:

  • Agents will still need to possess a licence to carry out football agent services, which is obtained by passing the FIFA agent exam.
  • Agencies cannot provide football agent services, meaning an individual agent will be responsible for performing these pursuant to a representation agreement.
  • The new rules regarding representation agreements will apply.

To avoid potential issues, agents should prioritise reviewing their representation agreements to ensure they are compliant with the revised NFAR, and clubs must review all processes when it comes to handling negotiations with players.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss how these developments may impact you, please book a free consultation with a member of the team.

Request a consultation

Key Contacts

Simon Leaf



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