FSGA Hard Card

Effective January 24, 2018

Local Rules and Conditions of Competitions

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The current Rules of the United States Golf Association and The R&A govern play. See applicable Championship or qualifying round Notice to Players and FSGA Championship Policies for additional Local Rules and Conditions. Complete text of Rules and Appendix I may be found in the current Rules of Golf.

Disregard Local Rules printed on club scorecards or posted at the course.

Unless otherwise noted, the penalty for breach of a Local Rule or Condition is:

Match play -- Loss of hole; Stroke play -- Two strokes.

Local Rules

Out of Bounds:

  1. Defined by inside points, at ground level, of white stakes, lines and perimeter fence posts.
  2. When the inside edge of a paved road or curb defines out of bounds, a ball that is on or beyond the road or curb is out of bounds even though it may lie on another part of the golf course.

Water Hazards and Lateral Water Hazards: When a water hazard or lateral water hazard is bounded by out of bounds, the hazard margin extends to and coincides with the out of bounds line.

Ground Under Repair:  Defined by white lines.  Other areas of ground under repair, even when not marked, include:

  1. French drains (trenches filled with stones or the like)
  2. Fire ant hills (Note: See Decision 1-4/10 for a ball in a water hazard)

Edging Grooves Around Putting Green:  If a ball lies in or on an edging groove around a putting green, or if the groove interferes with the area of the player's intended swing, the ball may, without penalty, be lifted, cleaned and placed in the nearest position to where it lay that is not nearer the hole and avoids interference by the condition whether on or off the putting green.


  1. Stones in bunkers are movable obstructions.
  2. White lined areas tying into obstructions are part of the obstruction.
  3. Where the outside edge (non-golf course side) of a road or path defines the margin of a hazard, the road or path is an obstruction.

Immovable Obstructions Close to Putting Green:  The Local Rules prescribed in Appendix I is in effect. Relief is available only when the ball and immovable obstruction lie in a closely-mown area, the ball lies through the green, and an immovable obstruction on or within two club-lengths of the putting green and within two club-lengths of the ball intervenes on the line of play between the ball and the hole. (Drop ball at the nearest point of relief, not within one club-length)

Integral Parts of the Course

  1. When located within hazards, artificial walls and pilings are integral parts of the course unless otherwise provided for in the Notice of Players.
  2. When closely attached to trees, wrappings, electrical wire, and cables are integral parts of the course.

Seams of Cut Turf:  Local Rule as prescribed in Appendix I is in effect.

Turf Plugs: On putting greens, turf plugs have the same status as old hole plugs and may be repaired under Rule 16-1c.

Embedded Ball Through the Green:  Local Rule as prescribed in Appendix I is in effect.

Loose Impediments:  Wood chips and mulch are loose impediments.

Distance Measuring Devices:  In all FSGA Championship and qualifying competitions, a player may obtain distance information by use of a distance measuring device (distance only).

Accidental Movement of a Ball on a Putting Green:  When a player's ball lies on the putting green, there is no penalty if the ball or ball-marker is accidentally moved by the player, his partner, his opponent, or any of their caddies or equipment. (NOTEL Full text of the Local Rule is available at http://www.usga.org/2017LocalRule).

Scoring in Stroke Play: 

The 2018 Local Rule modifying the Exception to Rule 6-6d is in effect.

Conditions of Competitions

List of Conforming Driver Heads and Golf Ball:  Optional Conditions as prescribed in Appendix I are in effect.

Pace of Play:  See FSGA policy.

Suspension of Play Due to a Dangerous Situation:  Optional Condition as prescribed in Appendix I is in effect.  All practice areas are closed during suspension for a dangerous situation until the Committee has declared them open. Failure to comply may results in revocation of entry.

Discontinue Play Immediately: One Prolonged signal note.
Discontinue Play: Three consecutive short signal notes, repeated.
Resume Play: Two short signal notes, repeated.

Close of Competition: The competition is deemed to have closed when the winner has been announced, or, in the absence of a prize ceremony, when all scores have been approved by the Committee.

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