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How to File a Rules Complaint Print E-mail
By Judy Misner   
September 15, 2015

How To File a Rules Complaint

US Chess maintains a standing Rules Committee to review questions pertaining to the rules of play. In case of doubt as to the application or interpretation of these rules, the US Chess Rules Committee will examine the case in point and render an official decision.

An appeal may be filed by:

1. Any player adversely affected by a decision by a tournament director or organizer (e.g. game result, prize distribution, standings, etc.)

2. A parent or coach on behalf of a player under the age of 16.

3. A team coach or team captain on behalf of a team member if the decision affected the team's score or standing.

Appeals in writing must be postmarked within seven days of the end of the tournament to the US Chess office. 

To file a formal rules complaint, contact Judy Misner by email ([email protected]), phone (931.787.1234), or regular mail to the US Chess office in Crossville, TN. Mark the envelope to the attention of Judy Misner, who is the Committee's liaison in the office. All complaints and responses should be typed. In addition to submitting your complaint you must also mail a $25 check to US Chess as a good faith deposit. The deposit will be returned unless the ruling authority finds the complaint to be frivolous and rules that the deposit is to be forfeited, otherwise the check will be returned.

In your complaint, you should make specific reference to the section(s) and rule(s) from the Official Rules of Chess which apply, to the violation you claim. When you submit your complaint, include ALL the evidence you want considered. The Committee will not research web sites, newsgroup postings etc. If you want such material considered, it is up to you to print this material and send it with your complaint. If you want other individuals to provide statements in support of your charges, we prefer that you obtain them. However, the Committee may agree (but is not required) to ask the US Chess office to contact them and ask for the statements.

Once the complaint is received in the US Chess office, the following procedure takes place. First, a copy of the complaint will be sent to members of the Rules Committee who will examine it to determine if it falls within their jurisdiction. If they vote that it does not, you will be notified. If they vote that it does, the complaint will then be sent to the defendant(s) with a request for a formal response by a given deadline. When that response is received, it will be sent to the Rules Committee along with the original complaint for their review and decision. Once a decision is made all parties will be informed of the decision.

You will have 30 days from when you are notified to submit an appeal of the decision to our Executive Board. Appeals are submitted to our Executive Board through the US Chess office at US Chess, P. O. Box 3967, Crossville, TN 38557 or submit your appeal by email to: Executive Director, Jean Hoffman at [email protected] and Judy Misner at [email protected].

If you have any further questions about the procedures for filing a complaint, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Judy Misner
US Chess Liaison to the Rules Committee