What is the legal framework for individual transfers? What restrictions can be placed on individuals moving between clubs?

There is no specific legal framework for individual transfers. Every sports association has its own regulations that set the conditions and restrictions for the transfer of individuals or simple moves between clubs.

Ending contractual obligations

Can individuals buy their way out of their contractual obligations to professional sports clubs?

A buyout clause may be negotiated and included in the athlete’s contract. A buyout clause has to specify the possible timing for termination and the financial consequences for the athlete to buy his or her way out. The inclusion of a buyout clause in the athlete’s contract is not a mandatory obligation under the law and is subject to the discretion of the parties and the principle of freedom of contract.

Welfare obligations

What are the key athlete welfare obligations for employers?

Every sport has its own rules and regulations. For example, the contract made under the rules of the Egyptian Football Association impose certain obligations on the player and the employer. For example, the club:

  • must honour the terms of the contract with the player;
  • is obliged to make an insurance policy for accidents, sickness and death;
  • should allow the player to continue with his or her studies; and
  • is obliged to conduct a periodic examination of the player and to prevent the use of stimulants.

In addition, if a player becomes fully disabled, and this is confirmed by a medical committee, he or she will be entitled to his or her financial benefits.

Other obligations can be imposed with the parties’ agreement.

Young athletes

Are there restrictions on the employment and transfer of young athletes?

The employment and transfer of young athletes are not regulated under the Sports Law. However, the general restrictions under the Labour Law relating to the employment of minors are applicable. In practice, very little attention is given to these restrictions and they are not yet regulated.

Articles 64 to 69 of the Child Law (Law No. 12 of 1996) state that children cannot be employed before the age of 15. However, employers may seek authorisation from the competent minister to employ children from the age of 13 to 15 years in seasonal work that does not harm their health or growth, and does not prejudice their education.

It is prohibited to employ a child in any kind of work that, by its nature or circumstances, may jeopardise his or her health, safety or morals, and the employer is required to insure him or her against any harm during his or her period of employment. The employer must provide at the workplace all occupational health and safety precautions and train the children to use them.

What are the key child protection rules and safeguarding considerations?

Articles 64 to 69 of the Child Law state that a child’s annual leave shall be increased by seven working days to 28 days and shall not be postponed or denied for any reason. A child cannot be employed to work for more than six hours a day and to work for more than four consecutive hours, and cannot work between 7pm and 7am. Working overtime is also prohibited.

The employer must inform the competent administrative authority of the names of the children and the persons assigned to monitor their work. The employer must provide separate accommodation for children if their working conditions require their stay, and must give their remuneration directly to them or to their parents.

Club and country representation

What employment relationship issues arise when athletes represent both club and country?

As a general rule, a club is obliged to release their registered players to representative teams of the country for which the player is eligible to play or has been called up by the relevant national association. Players and clubs cannot enter into an agreement to the contrary. A mandatory release is applicable for matches set out in the coordinated International Match Calendar and covers the specified training period. A release for a match that is not on the International Match Calendar is discretionary. Employment relationship issues that may arise when athletes represent both a club and a country include when:

  • an athlete refuses to play a match (mainly for fear of injury or if it conflicts with another match with the club or important training);
  • an athlete gets injured while training or playing with the national team;
  • an athlete announces retirement from the national team yet continues to play with the club; and
  • there are problems related to insurance against illness and accidents during the period of release.
Selection and eligibility

How are selection and eligibility disputes dealt with by national bodies?

In general, selection and eligibility are regulated by the relevant national sports federations and the disputes in connection thereto are governed by the internal dispute resolution bodies of the relevant federation or sports body. In practice, very few, if any, disputes are officially filed by players collectively or individual players with regard to selection and eligibility. This could be attributed to the uncertainty of the legal system in this area, which can hinder access to justice.

What are the key taxation issues for foreign athletes competing in your jurisdiction to be aware of?

Foreign athletes in Egypt are subject to Egyptian tax laws. Taxes are deducted from their remuneration directly by their employers. Egypt is party to several double tax treaties, which should be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and depending on the nationality of the athlete.