UK Anti-Doping (Ukad) fears it could be made insolvent or require a government bailout over a dispute with Tyson Fury. Former world heavyweight champion Fury tested positive for a banned steroid in June 2016, and says the adverse result came from eating uncastrated wild boar.
But a legal battle with Ukad over the evidence has meant Fury, 29, has not fought for two years.
Now senior figures at the agency are worried if he were cleared, Fury could sue for loss of earnings.
Given he reportedly makes up to £5m a fight before other revenue streams are factored in, any potential payout would severely challenge Ukad with its annual budget of around £8m.
The public body would also face legal costs for its own lawyers and potentially those of the Fury camp.
The issue has been discussed by Ukad's board recently and has been raised in meetings with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), through whom they are accountable to Parliament.
Ukad is believed to have sought guidance from the Government on whether it will effectively underwrite the case.
Ukad and the DCMS both said they were unable to comment.
However, BBC Sport understands Ukad - and then DCMS - are not of a mind to drop the case, amid concerns over the effect such an action would have on integrity of the anti-doping process.
In addition, there are fears it would signal to sports stars that it is possible to draw out proceedings and effectively undermine the organisation charged with maintaining clean sport.