Sports Law



Come by our special section on sports law on the 5th floor, consult this research guide or come talk to one of our librarians!

Sports law deals with state interests and the resolution of conflicts according to general legal norms. Sports maintain internal rules and structures to regulate play and organize competition. In sports law, the wider legal system impinges on this traditionally private sphere and subjects the politics of the sports game to the politics of the law game. The result is a double drama as the deep human concern for play combines with the concern for social justice. Sports law addresses basic ethical issues of freedom, fairness, equality, safety and economic security. The subject matter of sports law includes state control and subsidy of sport, rights of access, disciplinary powers and procedures, commercial and property rights, employment relations and compensation for injuries. Sports law is grounded in the material dimensions of sport and includes a study of life and times of its heroic practitioners.

John Barnes, Sports and the Law in Canada, Toronto, Butterworths, 1996.


MESSLaw: The Music, Entertainment, and Sports Society of Law

The Music, Entertainment, and Sports Society of Law (MESSLaw) is a club dedicated to providing University of Ottawa law students with opportunities to explore the areas of Entertainment and Sports Law. In the past, MESSLaw has hosted educational panel discussions with professionals such as General Manager of the Boston Bruins Peter Chiarelli, or seasoned Arbitrator Michel Picher (ie. NHL and MLB). Other events have included speaker series with leading legal professionals in the Entertainment/Music industry, as well as fun club events such as attending Ottawa Senators games, taking part in Med/Law games, and hosting the annual Law Spring Classic Hockey Game. This year marked out first appearance at UofT's Hockey Arbitration Competition of Canada, and we will be hosting try-outs in the Spring for next year's teams. We are an outgoing, talented, and friendly bunch, and we welcome new members!




Thanks to Professor John Barnes, of the University of Ottawa, for donating part of his collection of sports law books and journals to the Brian Dickson Law Library.

Thanks also to Julie Samuël, Esq. for her complete bibliography on the professional obligations of doctors in cases of doping in sports which helped us gather material for this research guide.