The Sports Law is a widespread field of law, which includes the main fields of law. For instance: Civil Law, Criminal Law, Constitutional Law or Administrative Law.
The Sports Law not only consists of the traditional fields of law. It also includes the following fields of laws: Health Law, Insurance Law, International Law, International Private Law, Competition Law, Public Procurement Law, etc.
It can be seen well, that the Sports Law is a mixed specialized field of law which covers almost every fields of laws. The Sports Law is a relatively young field of law, which is for today a separate, individual professional field in the legal science.
I. Introduction; the short story of the sport as legal institution
The sport has been exist for long time, but its legal regulation was formed later. The Sports Law was formed precisely in the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th century. This time has evolved the classical rights of freedom and later the political and civil rights. The citizenry was meant the same with of the notion of the nation. The right of freedom and political rights were not just behooved to the individual, but the nation too. This rights are called first-generation fundamental rights. This rights are for instance: the right to life, the right to human dignity, right to personal liberty, the right to assembly, etc.
In 19th century, the social state was established and began to take care of its citizenry. The second-generation rights were emerged. This rights are the social rights, for instance: right to employment and right to health care, etc.
The healthful services have evolved with the institutionalization of the right to health care. The sport was such an activity.
Internationally, the sporting legislation evolved in the 20th century. On 16th December 1966 the United Nations (hereinafter: UN) General Assembly adopted International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, its Article 12 states that ,,the States Parties to the present Covenant recognize the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health.” [Princzinger, 2010.] The same aim is formulated in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child too (20th November 1989). The international basis of the Sports Law was created by the adoption of these two conventions. By the ratification of these two conventions, their contents were compulsory for the member States. The contents of these two conventions gradually implemented into the particular member States national sporting legislation regulation.
In Hungary before and after the Reform Age (1825-1848), the physical activity and the physical education were regulated by one-one draft act, but they were not made mandatory. During the Bethlen Consolidation (1921-1931) the Act LIII of 1921 on the Physical Education was adopted, which was marked the physical education as a State task. In the Socialism the sport was under State control. It can be seen well, there was not unified sport legislation.
For the first time in Hungary, unified sport legislation emerged after the regime change. The basis of the sport legislation was created by the Act XX of 1949 on the Republic of Hungarian Constitution (hereinafter: old Constitution). Its Sections 67 (1) and 70/D (1) gave entire existence to the Sports Law in the frame of the State.
The Constitution ,,Article 67 (1) In the Republic of Hungary all children have the right to receive the protection and care of their family, and of the State and society, which is necessary for their satisfactory physical, mental and moral development.”
The Constitution ,,Article 70/D. (1) Everyone living in the territory of the Republic of Hungary has the right to the highest possible level of physical and mental health.”
,,(2) The Republic of Hungary shall implement this right through institutions of labor safety and health care, through the organization of medical care and the opportunities for regular physical activity, as well as through the protection of the urban and natural environment.”
In Hungary on 1st January 2012 entered into force the Fundamental Law of Hungary. The Fundamental Law of Hungary, Article XX states the following:
,,Article XX (1) Everyone shall have the right to physical and mental health.”
,,(2) Hungary shall facilitate the enforcement of the right referred to in Paragraph (1) by ascertaining that the agricultural sector is free of all genetically modified organisms, by providing access to healthy foodstuffs and potable water, by the protection of occupational health, by health care institutions and medical care, by supporting sports and regular physical exercise, as well as by ensuring the protection of the man-made and natural environment.”
It can be seen well that the contents of the two sections are the same aside from small differences. Next to the two Constitutions, the Sports Law were regulated by two former law and nowadays this field of law is regulated by one new applicable law. The two former laws after the regime change were the Act LXIV of 1996 on the Sports Law and the Act CXLV of 2000 on the Sports Law. These laws were repealed. Today, the Sports Law is regulated by the third law which is the Act I of 2004 on the Sports Law (hereinafter: Sports Act or third Sports Act).
So today the Sports Law is regulated by the Fundamental Law of Hungary and the third Sports Act. Next to these two laws, this field of law is regulated further more other laws and decrees.
In the last 30 years after the regime change, the three created and enacted Sports Act show well that the regulation of the Sports Law got stable basis since a unified act regulates the Sport as an equipment of the healthy life.
All in all, based on this short story of the Sport, it can be stated that for today, the Sports Law is a mixed field of law in the legal science.
II. The concept of the Sports Law
The Sports Law is a set of legal norms which governing sport. The Sports Law entirely regulates the physical exercise and the body-building activity.
According to the European Sports Charter Article II: ,,”Sport” means all forms of physical activity which, through casual or organised participation, aim at expressing or improving physical fitness and mental well-being, forming social relationships or obtaining results in competition at all levels.”
The set of rules of the Sports Law is consisted of legal norms like other fields of law. The norm is general rules of conduct which is the smallest element of the law that can bear meaning. The norm has three parts: the hypothesis (condition), the disposition (facts) and the sanction (legal consequences).
III. The legislation of the Sports Law
As previously referred, the Sports Law is a mixed field of law which is regulated by many another law. Here is a short list of the most important acts and decrees.
- Fundamental Law of Hungary
- Act I of 2004 on the Sports Law
- Act V of 2013 on the Civil Law
- Act C of 2012 on the Criminal Law
- Act I of 2012 on the Labor Law
- Act CLIV of 1997 on the Health Care
- Act LXV of 1996 on the Arrangement of Property for Sport
- Government Decree 39/2004 (12 March) on the Liability for Sport Disciplinary
- Government Decree 43/2011 (23 March) on the anti-doping activity
- Government Decree 41/2004 (12 March) on the Olympic Life Annuity
- Decree of Ministry for Sport and Youth (MSY) 7/2001 (4 Oct) on the Employment of Young Worker with Compulsory Education for Sport, etc.
List of the literary sources:
- Princzinger Péter: Sportjog I. Budapest, ELTE Eötvös Kiadó, 2010.
- Sárközy Tamás: Magyar Sportjog – Az új Polgári Törvénykönyv után. Budapest, HVG ORAC Lap-és könyvkiadó Kft., 2015.
- Nemes András: Jogi és sportjogi ismeretek. Budapest, HVG ORAC Lap-és könyvkiadó Kft., 2011.
- European Sports Charter Article II