The NRL has ended investigations into a contract dispute involving St George Illawarra, Wests Tigers and Tim Moltzen after the Dragons today announced they would not seek to register the contract Tim Moltzen and his manager had signed for the 2012 season.
The investigations were initiated when St George Illawarra referred the matter to the NRL Salary Cap Auditor, Mr Ian Schubert, following the refusal of Wests Tigers to grant Mr Moltzen a release from the final year of his contract.
After interviewing representatives of both clubs, the NRL Salary Cap Auditor was satisfied that the Dragons acted in good faith during negotiations to secure Mr Moltzen for the 2012 season.
While Tim Moltzen his agent and St George Illawarra were of the view that a release would be granted, this was not secured in writing by the agent before the contract was finalised as required under the NRL rules.
The effect of the Dragons decision not to pursue the registration is that the existing contract with the Wests Tigers remains the only registered contract involving the player and that he therefore remains contracted to that club.
On the basis of information supplied by the Dragons and the Wests Tigers, the NRL believes it appropriate the Agent Accreditation Committee review the role of the agent in not securing a written release from the Wests Tigers prior to entering into a new contract, as required.
NRL Chief Executive, Mr David Gallop, said today that he respected St George Illawarra’s decision, adding that the issue underlined the importance of all parties following the NRL rules.
“Having acted in good faith there is no doubt the Dragons have sought to avoid a difficult situation by withdrawing their registration of the contract.
“It is certainly the case that the NRL has the power to make an adjudication where disputes arise. Clearly that is no longer required in the current circumstance.
“The dispute in this case should highlight that contracts are binding legal documents which cannot be entered into lightly by any party.
“It is also needs to be noted that the NRL rules contain a number of procedures which protect clubs and players alike and this is a stark reminder of the importance of following those procedures.”