Arbitration court rules in favor of Schachklub Kirchweyhe 1947 e.V. chess club in dispute over tournament rules for the 1st German Chess League

The arbitral tribunal, chaired by Dr. Thomas Summerer and assisted by Dr. Helmut Lieber and Dr. Markus Sikora, ruled on July 5, 2023 in response to the complaint filed by Schachklub Kirchweyhe 1947 e.V. that the resolutions passed at the general meeting of Schachbundesliga e.V. on December 11, 2021 to amend the tournament rules for the 1st German Chess League are invalid and void. These resolutions and their implementation in the tournament rules violate Articles 18, 21 and 45 TFEU as well as the membership rights of Schachklub Kirchweyhe 1947 e.V. according to Section 823(1) Civil Code. In addition, Article 21(1) of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU and the principle of equal treatment under Article 3(1) of the Basic Law are violated by a provision of the tournament rules giving preference to young players under the age of 25.

The dispute related to the validity of six provisions of the tournament rules for the 1st German Chess League, which were to additionally govern the eligibility to play in the league from the start of the 2023/2024 season. This would also have forced relegation from or prevented promotion to the league on non-competitive grounds. These rules were intended to promote domestic chess players or players who were trained in Germany and to promote young players.

The hearing before the arbitral court was held on June 1, 2023 at which Schachklub Kirchweyhe 1947 e.V. and Schachbundesliga e.V. agreed on a settlement, which had subsequently been revoked by Schachbundesliga e.V.

Counsel to Schachklub Kirchweyhe 1947 e.V.
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek:

Christoph Wagner, Berlin

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