The TRU has opted to follow the current USA Rugby Disciplinary Procedures as referenced below. Please also note that ALL Disciplinary Rulings once determined are sent to every TRU Club as a public notice. If you have questions or concerns, please contact the Disciplinary Director or email the entire Disciplinary Committee.
- View current Disciplinary Reports
- View archived reports from 2005 – August 2017
- Disciplinary Report Form – File a report.
Acting pursuant to Bylaw 10.1, USA Rugby (“USAR”) hereby establishes the following Disciplinary Procedures for assessing the seriousness of Foul Play and Misconduct and for imposing sanctions when necessary. All participants in Rugby at all levels within the United States are bound by and shall follow these procedures. All decisions regarding, and all suspensions imposed on, players and other individuals shall be accepted and applied universally by all USAR organizing bodies and their Disciplinary Committees and Officials.
These Procedures are established in order to secure and maintain consistency in the way in which discipline is administered and uniformity in the way in which Foul Play and Misconduct are dealt with at all levels of play of the sport of Rugby within the United States of America.
Unless otherwise specified by USAR or modified by these Disciplinary Procedures, World Rugby Regulations 17, 18, and 20, including but not limited to the Sanctions for Foul Play set forth in Appendix 1 of World Rugby Regulation 17, as now in effect and as subsequently amended by World Rugby, shall apply to all play within the United States, all rugby individuals, and all entities within USAR.
PLAY WITHIN USA RUGBY
The phrase “play within the United States,” encompasses all levels of play in all forms, including all matches played within the geographic United States or under the jurisdiction of USA Rugby. Rugby under USAR jurisdiction is generally divided into play for Clubs, Colleges, Youth, and All Star/Representative sides. Each level of play may be administered by one or more organizational entities, which may include Geographic Unions (“GU”), Collegiate Conferences, and State Rugby Organizations (“SRO”), as well as USA Rugby itself. Match play and results in all these competitions can lead to National Championship Competition. In addition there are periodic matches and tournaments arranged by clubs and other organizations which are not played for national standing (so-called “Friendlies”), which may be organized and sanctioned under the authority of any of these subordinate administrative entities or structured in a friendly “Competition” for purposes play with a governing competition organizer.
Under its current structure, USA Rugby administers the GUs through the USAR Club Strategic Committee (“CSC”); college play is administered through the USAR College Management Committee (“CMC”), and Youth play is administered through the USAR Youth and High School Committee (“YHSC”). All of the foregoing entities, as well as the teams and individuals playing rugby in the United States, are responsible for administering these disciplinary procedures.
Responsibility for the administration of these Disciplinary Procedures and for the initial determination of appropriate disciplinary sanction (if any) is held by the local organizing entity most immediately responsible for sanctioning a competition. Each local organizing body (GU, Conference, or SRO) shall establish and maintain a Local Disciplinary Committee (“Local DC”) with a minimum of 3 members. Each organization operating a Friendly (whether a single match, tournament or continuing competition) shall establish a Disciplinary Committee of at least 3 members for the event, tournament or competition (“Event DC” or “Competition DC”), or, at its discretion, appoint a single, qualified Disciplinary Officer.
PROCEDURES TO BE FOLLOWED WHENEVER A PLAYER IS ORDERED OFF (RED CARD) FROM A MATCH, OR IS TEMPORARILY SUSPENDED (YELLOW CARD) FOR FOUL PLAY FROM 3 MATCHES WITHIN A 12 MONTH PERIOD:
Yellow Card: As used in these guidelines “Yellow card” refers to those temporary suspensions that result from infractions of Laws 10.1 or 10.4, only.
Competitive regular match play during a sanctioned and administered competition- The player is automatically suspended from all further play until the situation is reviewed by the appropriate Local DC.
Inter-GU/Conference/SRO/Social play — In the event there is a common governing body for both participating teams, the Disciplinary Committee of the common governing body shall be responsible for the initial adjudication of any matter. If there is no common governing body (e.g. for cross GU/Conference/SRO play), the Local DC of the player’s home area shall have initial jurisdiction of the matter.
For all such matches the DC with initial jurisdiction shall review the player’s situation within 4 days of the conclusion of the match and follow the provisions of World Rugby Regulation 17 to determine if and how to impose further sanctions under World Rugby Regulation 17 Appendix 1. A written decision shall be promptly issued to all involved, and copies sent to the player’s local governing organization, the USAR Disciplinary Committee (“USAR DC”), and the Referee Department of USAR.
Upon a player’s being Ordered Off/Red Card, or receiving two (2) Temporary Suspensions/Yellow Cards for foul play during an Event or three (3) Temporary Suspensions/Yellow Cards for foul play during a competition, the player is automatically suspended from further play in the Event or Competition for 8 days (or the next available match) until the Event DC or Competition DC reviews the situation and determines if and when the player may play further during the event. If additional sanction is determined, the sanction will be updated.
The DC with jurisdiction shall follow the provisions of World Rugby Regulation 17 to determine if and how to impose sanctions under World Rugby Regulation 17 Appendix 1. For events or tournaments, the decision of an Event DC is final during the friendly event and not subject to further review as to play during the Event. Regardless of the decision of an Event DC or Competition DC, the information regarding the situation and the DC’s ruling shall promptly be forwarded to the player’s Local DC to determine what further action, if any, it shall take.
The governing body of each GU/Conference/SRO shall establish a Disciplinary Appeal Committee or designate an Appeal Officer to consider such matters as may come before the body. Appellate procedures shall comply with World Rugby Regulation 17, especially 17.22.l.
All decisions of a Local DC are subject to a single appeal as a matter of right. The decision of the Local DC with initial jurisdiction over the matter may be appealed in the first instance to the Disciplinary Appeal Committee/Officer of the governing body/executive committee of the GU, Conference, or SRO of the DC which reached the decision.
An appeal may be taken from the decision of a Local DC by the player, the player’s club/team/organization, the opposing/victim player(s) or that player(s)’ club/team/organization, the GU/Conference/ SRO of either the player or the victim player(s), or USA Rugby. Such parties shall lodge an appeal as soon as reasonably practicable but in any event no later than 72 hours following receipt by the appealing party of the decision. During the appeal, the player remains under whatever sanction, if any, originally imposed by the Local DC.
The Appeal Committee/Appeal Officer may affirm, cancel, alter, diminish, or increase any sanction imposed by the Local DC, following the provisions of World Rugby Regulation 17. The Appeal Committee/Appeal Officer shall render a written decision within 7 days of the receipt of the appeal to all involved, and send copies to the USAR Disciplinary Committee (“USAR DC”) and the Referee Department of USAR.
In the event that the initial disciplinary hearing is held before the disciplinary committee of a GU, Conference or SRO, then the appeal as of right, shall be to the Disciplinary Appellate Committee/Disciplinary Appellate Officer of the relevant governing USAR body, i.e., the CSC, the CMC, or the YHSC. The Disciplinary Appeal Committee/Appeal Officer of the CSC, CMC or YHSC, as the case may be, shall handle the appeal in the same manner as set forth for initial appeals from a Local DC. During the appeal, the player remains under whatever sanction, if any, originally imposed by the DC of the GU, Conference, or SRO.
In the event that the initial disciplinary hearing is held before a Competition DC, the organizers of the competition shall provide for an appellate procedure which handles the appeal in the same manner as set forth for initial appeals from a Local DC. During the appeal, the player remains under whatever sanction, if any, originally imposed by the Competition DC.
Following the decision of the Appeal Committee/Appeal Officer of the GU/Conference/SRO (if one of those institutions considers the appeal as of right) or the decision of the Appeal Committee/Appeal Officer of the CSC, CMC, or YHSC (if one of those institutions considers the appeal as of right), or the Competition DC (if one of those institutions considers the appeal as of right), the player, the player’s club/team/organization, the opposing/victim player(s) or that player(s)’ club/team/organization, or the GU/Conference/ SRO of either the player or the victim player(s) or USA Rugby may request further review by the USAR DC which may, in its discretion, choose to accept the matter for further review or decline to undertake further review and action. Such parties shall request an appeal as soon as reasonably practicable but in any event no later than 72 hours following receipt by the requesting party of the decision.
If the USAR DC declines to accept the matter for further review, the previous decision and sanctions, if any, stand. If the USAR DC chooses in its discretion to accept the matter for further review, the decision and sanctions, if any, of the Appeal Committee/Appeal Officer remain in effect pending review. If the USAR DC chooses in its discretion to accept the review, it shall render a written decision within 7 days of accepting review. If it accepts review, the USAR may affirm, cancel, alter, diminish, or increase any sanction previously imposed, following the provisions of World Rugby Regulation 17. The USAR DC shall render a written decision within 7 days of the receipt of the appeal to all involved, and send a copy to the Referee Department of USAR. The decision of the USAR DC is final, subject to the provisions of USAR Bylaws X and XII.
In the event that the initial disciplinary hearing is held before the disciplinary committee of a governing USAR body, i.e., the CSC, the CMC, or the YHSC, then the appeal as of right, shall be to the USAR DC. The USAR DC shall, in that case, hear the appeal as of right and handle the appeal in the same manner as set forth for initial appeals from a Local DC. In such a circumstance the decision of the USAR DC shall be final, subject to the provisions of USAR Bylaws X and XII.
For national competitions, under direct administrative control of USAR (i.e. match play in regional or national pools leading to a national championship) USAR shall establish DCs and Appeal Committees/Appeal Officers in compliance with these Disciplinary Procedures and World Rugby Regulations 17 and 18.
Should incidents occur regarding play and playing arrangements not in accordance with the circumstances described herein, the general procedures as set forth herein shall still be followed: there shall be a DC at the first level of governing administration of the event, an appeal to the next level of governing body/executive committee or relevant USAR governing body and its Appeal Officer/Appeal Committee, and thence to the discretionary review of the USAR DC
Where these procedures provide that a disciplinary body is to act by a particular time, it is intended that the body should act by the time specified; however, the failure to act by the time specified shall not bar action by the body so long as substantial fairness is not compromised. The various DCs, Appeal Committees, and Appeal Officers, of the entities of USA Rugby and USAR DC may reasonably adjust the timing requirements for any particular incident as needed by the particular circumstances, but any previously imposed sanctions still apply regardless of the timing and in no circumstances may the DCs, Appeal Committees, Appeal Officers, and USAR DC fail to follow and apply the substantive provisions of World Rugby Regulation 17 and 18, especially Appendix 1 to Regulation 17.
Any allegations regarding misconduct by a referee must come from a player/club/local organizing entity, and shall be directed to and handled by a DC of that referee’s local referee society or referee organizing body, which shall determine what sanction, if any, shall be imposed on the referee. Thereafter, the referee or his society or referee organizing body may request further review by the USAR Referees and Laws Committee DC, which may in its discretion, choose to accept the matter for further review or decline to undertake further review and action. The decision of the USAR R&L DC is final. In all instances, any decisions regarding a referee’s action shall not affect any decision regarding scores or game results.
For national competitions, as much as possible USAR shall establish Citing Commissioners and Citing Procedures, and allow citings by teams/clubs, in compliance with World Rugby Regulation 17, particularly 17.9-17.12 and 17.16. For other matches, the GUs, Conferences, and SROs are encouraged likewise to establish Citing Commissioners and Citing Procedures, and may allow citings by teams/clubs, in compliance with World Rugby Regulation 17. In all instances involving a citation (rather than a referee-imposed sanction), an World Rugby approved Citing Commissioner, Judicial Officer, or Appeal Officer should be included on, or consulted by, the appropriate DC, Appeal Committee/Appeal Officer, and USAR DC. Where Citing Procedures have been established, member clubs have the right to cite any player, coach, club official, or other person affiliated with the member club to the DC with jurisdiction for foul play or misconduct, which citation shall be made by written notice given to the Chair of the DC with jurisdiction no later than forty-eight (48) hours after the conclusion of the subject match or other incident in question. If a club elects to cite a player, coach, official or other person affiliated with a 6 member club, the club has the obligation to provide evidence that supports the citation and this evidence or a description of the evidence must accompany the citation. Additional evidence may be provided at the D/C hearing.
By January 31 of each year, the various DCs, Appeal Committees, Appeal Officers, and USAR DC shall submit to the Referee Department of USAR a written summary of all matters considered and all decisions rendered in the previous calendar year, in a format previously approved and distributed by the USAR Referee Department.