Apprentices are not obliged to sign with an agent and could represent themselves, consult with a solicitor or work with a close family member (unpaid) when dealing with any of the issues above.
The Football Association
Regulations introduced by FIFA require players and clubs to deal only with licensed agents for transfer and contract negotiations.
In conjunction with the FIFA Regulations on Working with Intermediaries, which came into force on 01 April 2015, the FA updated their guidelines.
Should you choose not to contact The PFA for advice, full guidance can also be obtained from The FA website – http://www.thefa.com/football-rules-governance/policies/intermediaries/regulation-and-forms
The FA’s dedicated helpline purely for queries on the Regulations, can be reached on 0844 980 8213.
While you are advised to read through the extensive list of regulations available on The Football Association website, some key points are listed below.
Some key points to remember:
- Only an intermediary may be used and paid by a player or club in relation to any intermediary activity. Alternatively, a player or club may represent themselves in any matter relating to a transaction.
- Only individuals and companies registered with The FA as intermediaries are authorised to conduct intermediary activity on behalf of players and clubs playing football in England.
- If you are in doubt as to the status of an agent, ask to see proof, contact The FA or check The FA’s website, which lists all authorised agents.
- It is an offence for players to use an unauthorised agent in negotiations (even where an authorised agent signs the paperwork at the end of the deal).
- If players use an agent they must have a written contract in place. They must ensure that they get a copy of the contract and that it is signed and dated.
- If players have a contract with an agent, that agent must only act for them and look after their interests in any negotiation. The agent must not act for the club.
- Players entering into a contract with an agent should consider taking independent legal advice before agreeing to sign.
- If players don’t want to use an agent, they don’t have to. However, if players have a contract with an agent, they may still have to pay the agent even if they don’t use him (depending on the terms that the player negotiates in the player/agent contract).
- Players can use close relations to act as their agents (e.g. brothers, parents, etc) but only if there is no payment for their services.