TUE matters concerning international-level athletes and athletes participating in international sporting events are handled by International Federations. Athletes must ascertain, from their respective national or international federations, the TUE procedures that apply to them and, if necessary, apply to the respective international federation for a TUE in advance. Therapeutic Use Exemptions granted by FINCIS apply only to national-level athletes and national-level competitions and are not automatically valid in international competitions unless recognised by the international federation in question.
Regardless of age or national level, athletes who are included in registered testing pools of their respective international federations or who participate in international sports events under their respective international federations must apply for TUEs in advance according to WADA’s International Standard for TUEs and the rules of the international federation.
The athlete should determine the details of the TUE process with his or her national or international federation well before a TUE is needed. International Federations often have TUE application forms of their own, which are to be filled out in English and accompanied by the necessary medical documents translated in English.
The International Federation notifies promptly both the athlete and his or her National Anti-Doping Organisation (in Finland FINCIS) of a TUE decision it has made. If FINCIS considers that the TUE does not meet the criteria set out in the International Standard for TUEs, it has 21 days from such notification to refer the matter to WADA for review.
If FINCIS refers the matter to WADA for review, the TUE granted by the International Federation remains valid for international-level Competition and Out-of-Competition Testing (but is not valid for national-level Competition) pending WADA’s decision.
If FINCIS does not refer the matter to WADA for review, the TUE granted by the International Federation also becomes valid for national-level competitions after the specified 21-day period.
Recognition by international federations of TUEs granted by FINCIS
TUEs granted by FINCIS apply only to national-level athletes and national-level competitions and are not automatically valid in international competitions unless recognised by the International Federation in question, if the athlete becomes an international-level athlete or if they participate in international competitions.
If an athlete who has been competing only at national level and who has been granted a TUE by FINCIS reaches the international level or intends to participate in international competitions, they must seek recognition for the TUE from their international federation.
The athlete must determine if the International Federation automatically recognises the TUE granted by FINCIS or if the IF requires that the TUE (with accompanying application form and attachments translated in English) must be first submitted to it for evaluation.
If the TUE granted by FINCIS meets the criteria set out in the International Standard for Therapeutic Use Exemptions, the International Federation shall recognise it for international-level competitions as well. If, on the other hand, the International Federation considers that the criteria are not met and, therefore, refuses to recognise the TUE, it must promptly notify both the athlete and FINCIS and explain the reason for the refusal.
The athlete and/or FINCIS have then 21 days from such notification to refer the matter to WADA for review. In such case, the TUE remains valid for national-level competitions and out-of-competition testing pending WADA’s decision. If the matter is not referred to WADA for review within the deadline, FINCIS must determine whether the original TUE that it granted should nevertheless remain valid for national-level competition and out-of-competition testing (provided that the athlete ceases to be an international-level athlete and does not participate in international-level competition). Pending FINCIS’s decision, the TUE remains valid for national-level competition and out-of-competition testing.
Appealing a TUE granted by International Federation
A TUE decision denying the grant of a TUE by an International Federation may be appealed by the athlete by referring the decision to WADA for review and/or by appealing to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).