John Mehrzad QC and Lydia Banerjee, both members of the Littleton Sports Law Group, have been appointed Panel Chairs to arbitrate potential cases of maleficence in the process of Classification in Paralympic sport – defined in the rules as Intentional Misrepresentation.
Classification is the process used to minimise the impact of an eligible physical, vision or intellectual impairment on sporting performance. It identifies which impairments are and are not eligible to compete in Paralympic sport and groups athletes into sport classes dependent on how their impairment impacts performance. The process involves a review of medical evidence, the application of sport and impairment specific tests and observation in competition. Intentional Misrepresentation is one of the biggest risks to the integrity of Paralympic sport, if proven it can lead to lengthy sanctions against an athlete and their support team.
As part of their training, John and Lydia completed an online course and test, then attended a workshop and question and answer session led the British Paralympic Association’s Classification Manager, Iain Gowans, at the offices of Sport Resolutions.