Provisional suspensions

An athlete or other person may be provisionally suspended by their sport during the anti-doping rule violation process.

A provisional suspension is where an athlete (or other person) facing a possible anti-doping rule violation is barred temporarily from sport until the outcome of the matter is determined.

Circumstances where a provisional suspension can be imposed include:

  • Where there is a positive test (this is usually a mandatory suspension, depending on the anti-doping policy of the sport and the type of substance detected).   
  • Where an athlete elects to abide by a voluntary provisional suspension (this is at the discretion of the sport and also depends on the anti-doping policy of the sport).

If an athlete or other person breaches their provisional suspension, they are not eligible for credit towards their final sanction for the time that they were provisionally suspended. For example, an athlete has been provisionally suspended following a positive test. The athlete decides to compete in a sporting event after 3 months. When the final decision is handed down, the athlete’s sanction commences from the date of the decision, rather than from the date the athlete was provisionally suspended.