A spokesperson for SCA Promotions has stated that a law suit will be filed against Lance Armstrong today in Dallas to recover the $12 million in bonuses paid following Armstrong’s Tour de France victories in 2002, 2003 and 2004. The breakdown also includes $2.5 million in costs after a 2005 arbitration award. SCA had originally attempted to withhold the payments following concerns over the American’s cheating but Armstrong took the company to an arbitration hearing in Dallas in 2005 and was awarded the bonus payments along with his legal costs.
Armstrong’s legal team have stated that they will defend the claim. They are adamant that the issue cannot be reopened because the 2005 arbitration agreement contained a provision that the settlement was final. Armstrong’s lawyer Tim Herman is also relying on the fact that no athlete has ever had to repay his or her bonus in a similar manner. Following the cyclist’s doping admissions to Oprah Winfrey last month, SCA believe that they are in a strong position to recover the bonus payments along with interest, legal fees and punitive damages. The Promotions Company also states that during the 2005 arbitration proceedings Armstrong’s representatives and legal advisors made admissions that were he ever stripped of the titles in question the monies would be repaid. SCA is now attempting to ensure that such statements are honoured.
Following his interview with Oprah Winfrey in January, Armstrong has largely vanished from the public arena. The disgraced cyclist was once a regular twitter user but hasn’t used the social media site in almost a month. Reports in the US have suggested that the US Anti-Doping Agency is in talks with Armstrong in an attempt to clean up a sport that has been hitting the news for all the wrong reasons recently. There have also been reports of further federal investigations following suggestions of obstruction charges, intimidation and witness tampering.
Here at Farleys we have a dedicated team of sports lawyers who have experience in dealing with a multitude of disputes in the sporting arena. We deal with sports professionals across a variety of sports on a daily basis. To discuss the legal implications of any of the above issues, or indeed any sports law matter, please do not hesitate to contact one of our sports law solicitors today.