Guidelines. The following pertain to players wishing to receive
invitations to the events listed in Section 2:
a. US Chess membership requirement. Every player must be a member of US Chess in good
standing at the time of the invitation. Invitations are a privilege,
not a right, and are not afforded to any player by virtue of his or her
status as a US Chess member.
b. FIDE Federation listed as USA. Players must be registered with FIDE as a USA
player to participate in these events and the date of eligibility to
participate under the USA flag must be prior to the date the invitation is
FIDE Federation Transfers. In order to be eligible for participation in
International events, transferred players must fulfill all FIDE transfer fee
requirements prior to invitation to these events. See https://ratings.fide.com/fedchange.phtml for federation transfer information. Click on the
appropriate year to show transfers approved, to include dates when players
become eligible to participate in FIDE events under the USA flag and when
they may represent the USA at International competitions without paying the
d. U.S. residency.
Non-US citizens, including those who have an approved FIDE federation
transfer, must provide documentation of U.S. residency. Documentation
includes I-94, work, refugee or humanitarian visas. In accordance
with ADM 14-31 approved at the 2014 Delegates Meeting, a student or tourist
visa is not sufficient for eligibility to play in US Chess Invitational
events. Students and tourists desiring invitation to such events
must demonstrate their commitment to the U.S. by providing a Green Card or
properly processed Green Card application.
a. US Championships.
In even-numbered years, players must meet all the requirements listed in
Section 1, with the exception of transfer fees (required for USA
representation at International Championships). Players must still be
listed as USA Federation in FIDE. In odd-numbered years, when the US
Championships are also the Zonal Championships, players must also meet the
transfer fee requirements as explained in 1.d above.
following will be automatically seeded into the US Championship and US
1) Previous year’s respective champions.
2) US Open Champion
3) US Junior Champion
4) US Junior Girl’s Champion (for US Women’s Championship)
players will be selected utilizing the Invitational Rating list (US Chess
ratings with appropriate adjustments as defined in 5 below) posted on the US
Chess website. At the discretion of the organizer, wild-card entries
may be added. These players (rating and wild-card) must also meet the
requirements of Section 1.
b. For Scholastic National Invitational Event and Award Requirements click here.
c. Olympiad and World Teams. The US Champion and US Women’s Champion qualify
automatically for the respective team, but foreign players must also meet the
requirements in 1.d. Other participants are selected by using the appropriate
Invitational Rating List. The use of this combined list also applies to
the Zonal Championships (US Championship and US Women’s Championship in
odd-numbered years) since they lead to qualification to the World
Championship cycles. Team Captain and Coaches are selected by the
Changes in this section will become effective after the
selection of players for the 2016 World Olympiad. Until then, the previous published
selection of team members, captains and coaches for one event is independent
from the selection of teams for subsequent events. For example, the
members of the Olympiad teams will not necessarily be the same for subsequent
events such as the World Team Championships.
Invitational Cut-off Dates:
US Championship and US Women’s
Championship. Cut-off dates depend on the schedule of the events.
The US Chess Office will determine the invitation date which will be
approximately three months prior to the event.
b. Olympiad and World Team Championships. Invitation
dates will be after the preceding US Championships (including play-off games)
are rated, unless the dates for submitting the team rosters precludes from
using the US Championships results. In such case, the US Chess Office
will determine the invitation date which will be about three months prior to
Invitational Rating List. The rating of matches and private tournaments will
not be included in the Invitational Rating calculations (see definitions in
Section 6). Only
established US Chess ratings will be used for invitational purposes.
Provisional ratings will not be used. Players found to be
inappropriately manipulating their results may face sanctions, including
ineligibility for invitations for US Chess Invitational events.
For the US Championship and US
Women’s Championship the US Chess rating list will be used, with adjustments
as noted below.
b. For the World Olympiad
and World Team, the invitational rating
will consist of 1/3 of the US Chess Rating, 1/3 of the FIDE rating, and 1/3
of the combined US Chess/FIDE peak ratings over the 12 months preceding the
cut-off rating lists, with adjustments as noted in Section 5 below.
Changes in this section will become
effective after the selection of players for the 2016 World Olympiad. Until then, the previous published
The “Activity Period” is
defined as the 12-month period ending 120 days before the date of invitation.
1) Each player must play at least 30 regular rated US
Chess games against certain strength opponents as defined below.
2) Games must be rated by the invitation cut-off date.
Games that are Quick or Dual rated do not count.
3) Games played in matches and “private tournaments” do not
4) For games to be counted as “activity” they must be against
players of strength as noted below:
Strength (US Chess Rating)
US Women’s Championship
b. Any player who fails to play at least 30 games as defined
above during the Activity Period will be penalized one (1) Invitational
Rating Point for each game fewer than 30 played.
Private Tournament and Match
from matches and private tournaments will not be used in invitational rating
and activity calculations.
Private Tournament. A tournament is considered to be private unless is
has at least one of the following features:
1) A TLA which appears on Chess Life magazine at least two
weeks before the tournament.
2) The tournament is FIDE rated, registered as such with FIDE
at least 30 days in advance, open to the public to spectate, and adequately
publicized at least two weeks in advance.
Usually, a two-players event is considered to be a match and does not count
in invitational rating and activity calculations, however:
1) The US Chess Executive Director may allow a match to count
if it is FIDE rated, registered as such with FIDE at least 30 days in
advance, open to the public to spectate, adequately publicized at least two
weeks in advance, and neither player has been on a rating floor during the
past 24 months.
2) Segments of knock-out match tournaments in which the
pairings are determined by a system for Round 1 and by results after that are
not considered matches.
3) Play-off matches for a title prize, if specified in the
advance tournament publicity, are not considered matches.
4) The US Chess rating program considers some events with
more than two players to be matches, for example events in which players face
each other more than twice or some events in which one player plays more
games than others. Events considered to be matches by the rating
program do not count.
Tie-break Rules. If after invitational ratings are calculated there is a
tie among players, the following tie-breaks will be used to decide order of
The highest number of eligible US
Chess rated games played during the activity period. This includes FIDE
games that are US Chess rated also.
b. The highest number of eligible US Chess rated games played
in the U.S. during the activity period.
The higher FIDE rating from the
current FIDE rating list at the time of invitation.
d. The greatest US Chess rating gain during the activity
e. If multiple players are still tied, US Chess shall have a
drawing of lots to break the tie.
- These guidelines will be adjusted as necessary and posted
on the US Chess website.
- The invitation dates and rating supplement or tournaments
that will be used will also be posted on the US Chess website.
US Chess reserves the right not to issue invitations to any
particular event or to change these criteria without advanced notice.