Mid-Atlantic Chess League Tournament Rules

Updated 09/20/19.

A. Application of the Rules

1.These rules govern any season League Tournaments of the
Mid-Atlantic Chess League.

2.These rules may be amended only after a review of motions initiated by team captains and submitted to the TD.  If a majority of team captain propose changes to the league rules, a vote will be conducted by the TD and include all team captains.  Majority vote results will constitute a change to be made in the appropriate Rules section.

 B. Executive Director

1.The Executive Director as tournament director (TD) shall implement these rules.

2.The Executive Director may supplement these rules with statements of policy, interpretations, and precedents, such rulings to be published in the next bulletin.

3.The Executive Director shall see that a bulletin is published by 48 hours prior to each match, to contain at least current team standings for all sections, results for each match, pairings for the coming round, and any rulings made by the Executive Director.

C. Team Captains

1.The team captain is the official team representative to the League.

2.The team captain is responsible for the conduct of matches and must see that Chess League and relevant USCF rules are enforced.

3.The team captain is responsible for ensuring that all team players are USCF members when they compete. Team captains will be held financially responsible for players who are not USCF members. If a player has a USCF ID that is not current and active, ths players captain must seek approval from the Commissioner to play.

4. Both captains and their designated representatives must be present during all phases of a match.

5. A captain may advise his players as to general conduct and respond to questions of whether to offer or accept a draw and may answer questions about rules but may not give advice as to a position, strategy, or choice of move.

6. Team captains must notify the tournament director of a list of players (i.e. names, USCF ID numbers, current ratings as published in the most closest month prior to the start of the tournament by USCF, State of Residence, and board order).  Notification must be in a documented format (either email or text message).

7. Any changes to the lineup before the start of a round must be made at least 48 hours prior to the start of the round.  See line 6 above on how/whom to contact.

8. The team captain must provide their contact information including full name, mobile number, and email to the tournament director.

9. The team captain is responsible for informing their team’s players of the opponent team name and the opposing team’s chess.com usernames.  This will insure an easier start to each round.

D. Teams

1. Teams will consist of 4 players and up to 2 alternates.  The average rating for the team determines which section of the league that team will participate in.  Lower rated teams have the option of playing in the section above their own. 

3.A team captain must notify the Executive Director and the opposing team captain at least one week in advance of a site change.

4.Team Captains must submit a roster (in board order) upon entry into the league.  This will be done during the online registration process.

5. Only Teams from NJ, DE and PA may play.

 E. Team Lineups

1.Rating limits for each section are:

a. Open section: Open to all. For players 2300+ the player must be on the roster (Rule 4.4) or at least two days notice must be given to the opposing team captain for player to be eligible to play.

b. Amateur section: No player over 1999.

c. Reserve section: No player over 1699.

2. For application of Rule E.1 only, a player may choose to use the rating he had when he first played for the same team during the same season. 

3. A captain will assign his players to boards in order of the last official published USCF ratings. If two players have the same rating, their board assignments will be left to the discretion of the captain.

4. With the consent of both team captains, players may play out of rating sequence in order to avoid forfeits. 

5. An unrated player may be assigned a tentative rating with the approval of the Executive Director.

6.Unrated players may play in any section, but only on the lowest boards unless assigned a rating. (See Rule E.5.)

7. Computers are not allowed to play.

F. Players

1.A player must be a current USCF member whenever she/he competes in any given round.

2.A player may play for only one team in a section except when the Executive Director determines that a player has been unfairly prevented from playing, in which event he may switch to another team (once per season).

3.A player may play only one game per round.

G. Fees

1.The registration fee for a season shall be $40 per team.

H. Match Schedule

1. Matches may be rescheduled with consent of both teams’ captains and the Executive Director.

2. The Executive Director may consider postponing a match at the request of either captain if weather conditions or other emergencies require it or if insufficient notice has been given of the match.

3. Individual games may not be pre-played or postponed.

I. Match Play including Playing Venue.

1. A match shall consist of four boards per team against another teams’ four boards. 

2. The TD will determine the color assignment for each team prior to the start of the round.  When a team is assigned White, this means that their Board 1 has white and Board 2 has black, board 3 has white and board 4 has black.  It is the reverse when a team is assigned Black.

3.  All games will be played online at chess.com.  All team players must be present at the same site from which they will play throughout the length of their individual game.  The site location is flexible and can be someone’s home, a library, or any public place such as a Starbucks.  Access to wi-fi is required for the duration of the game.  Playing sites may change from one round to the next at the team’s discretion.  The team captain must submit in writing to the TD the name of the site and site address at least 48 hours in advance of the start of each round.

4.Time control shall be G/90 with a 5 second increment. Requests to choose an alternate time control must be submitted to the Commissioner 24 hours in advance and then be agree upon by both captains of that day’s round.

5. Games will be played on Fridays and begin at 7pm.   Players arriving or absent after 7:45 p.m. forfeit their game.

6. Exceptions may be made to Rule I.5 by agreement of the captains.

7. Time is managed by the game in process on-line.  Time remaining will be shown on the screen.

8.  All game results must be submitted to the TD in writing by the team captain within 24 hours of the time the final game finished for that round.  A form will be available on the League’s website to report results.  

J. Disputes

1. All disputes must (A) be attempted to be resolved between the team captains and then (B) in the event it cannot, each captain must contact the TD immediately to resolve the dispute.  All decisions made by the TD are final and binding to each team.

K. Penalties

1.A team forfeits on a board when its player has a higher USCF rating than one of its players on a higher board. (Exception, Rule E.4)

2. Both teams forfeit on a board when a match is played on fewer than four boards

3.The Executive Director may declare a match forfeited by both teams if the result is not reported by the Wednesday following the match.

4.Forfeits made in advance of a match will be made on the lowest boards.

5.  Two points will be awarded for forfeiture on first board.  However, only one of the two forfeit points will be counted in the team game points when used for tiebreaks.

7.If a team deliberately lists an ineligible player, or lists a player who does not intend to play, the team shall forfeit all lower boards.

8.If a player or a team member not playing interferes with a game in violation of the rules of chess, his own game (if still in progress) may be declared lost by his team or the opposing team be awarded an extra game point.

9. The Executive Director has the power to bar:

a. From playing or captaining during the subsequent season, a captain failing to provide 48 hours notice of his team’s forfeiture of a match to the opposing team captain

b. From League play for the rest of the season, a team forfeiting all of its games in a match, or 50% of its games in two consecutive matches, or a total of 10 individual games during a season

c. From League play for the subsequent season, a team forfeiting all its games in either of the last two matches of the current season.

d. From League play for the rest of the season, a player forfeiting two games in a season.

e. From League play until he is reinstated at an annual meeting, any player who is penalized twice, and from League play, for the rest of the season, any team not paying league fees within one week after the completion of the second round of the season.

10  .The Executive Director shall have the power to impose any penalty authorized by USCF Tournament Rule Article 20K.

11.  If a team forfeits a match, the team captain must have informed the opposing captain of this forfeiture at least 24 hours prior to the match.  If the captain fails to inform the opposing captain by this time, the captain will be penalized $3.00 per forfeited game.  The penalty fee will be due prior to the captain’s participation in any future season.

12. Game results not submitted by each caption as listed in Rule I.9 will result in a forfeit for that team players games, regardless of the actual outcome of the game played itself.

M. Prizes

1.The League shall award four plaques to the winning team in each section and trophies to the individuals with the highest score in each section.

2. Additional prizes may be awarded at the discretion of the Board of Directors.

N. Tiebreakers and Scoring

1.The following are the list of tiebreakers:

a. Match Score,

b. Board Score

c. Head to Head.

d. Match Wins

e. Board Wins

f. US Amateur Team System

g. Modified Median (Swiss Only)

h. Solkoff (Swiss Only)

i. Cumulative (Swiss Only)

j. Coin Flip

2.Before advancing to the next tiebreaker, we drop every team eliminated in the previous round.

O. Playoffs

1.If at the end of the season there are two teams in the same section, which are tied for first in score, tiebreakers (see Rule 15.1) will be used to designate a home team, which will host a playoff match to determine the first place team.  In case of a tie, the team with the better tiebreakers will be declared the winner.

2. Only players who have played at least once for their team during the season may participate in a playoff match (or match that falls under rule 9.8).

P. MATCH SCHEDULE for Fall-Winter 2019

  1. September 20, 2019
  2. October 18, 2019
  3. November 22, 2019
  4. December 20, 2019
  5. January 17, 2020

Q. How to Play a Game online at chess.com

1, Create account by registering yourself.  This username will be utilized by your opponent to find you and request a game.

2.  Befriend your opponent.  Your captain should have the names of your team’s opponents and each team member’s usernames on chess.com.

3. Create a challenge; Decide time control as “custom”, (G90; increment of 5) l choose “unrated” option.  Your opponent will “check mark” the option to accept the challenge.

4. Play the game.

5. Report your result to your team captain.

R. How To Register your Team

See website for details.

Q. How To Report your Team’s individual game results.

See website for details.

Website Form for Reporting Match Results: (make all fields required fields)