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Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners Provides Legal Assistance to Athletes and IOC at Sochi Olympics

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Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners (EPAM) announced that it participated in the Pro Bono Lawyers Program at the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi.

The Firm’s team in Sochi consisted of Partners Markiyan Kliuchkovskyi and Georgy Sur, the Heads of the firm's Sports Law Practices in Ukraine and Russia, respectively, and Kyiv-based Associate Oleksandr Volkov. The three lawyers assisted participants of the Olympic Games in Sochi resolve legal disputes that arose during the Games, and represented them before the ad hoc division of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), which was established to facilitate a quick resolution of disputes that arose during or in connection with the Games. Under CAS rules, decisions in such disputes are issued by the arbitrators sitting at the site of the Games within 24 hours from the moment of application, requiring that legal counsel prepare cases – gather evidence and draft pleadings – within an extremely limited timeframe.

EPAM announced that Markiyan Kliuchkovskyi was based in Sochi from the end of January, and among his tasks at the Games was the representation of Argentinean Clyde Getty in the freestyle skier's application to compete in the Sochi games, which was threatened when the International Skiing Federation's allocation of a place in the games to the National Olympic Committee of Argentina was withdrawn. Markiyan also acted on behalf of Argentinean alpine skier Maria Belen Simari Birkner, who requested that the CAS order the Argentinean NOC to enter her in the Olympic Winter Games in the Alpine Skiing events of Slalom, Super G, and Giant Slalom, after she was refused entry in what she claimed was an arbitrary and discriminatory fashion.

Partner Georgy Sur provided stand-by assistance to the CAS pro bono panel and monitored the events for potential protests. He is currently advising the IOC on matters not directly related to the Olympic Games.

Overall, Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners handled two of the four cases heard by the CAS ad hoc Division.