In golf, a local rule refers to an additional set of rules addressed specifically on a particular golf course because of its abnormal conditions. Golf has a set of rules that are standard regulations and procedures. These rules are administered by The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews (R&A) and the United States Golf Association (USGA). The R&A is considered as the governing body of golf worldwide. However, for the US and Mexico, the USGA is in-charge of its rules and regulations.

Establishment of Local Rule

The local rule was established due to some golf courses that have a unique set-up. It is because the rules of golf provided by USGA do not apply to the local golf course. These rules can be related to the course boundaries, penalty areas, bunkers, putting greens, abnormal course conditions, among others.

USGA Rules of Golf: Local Rule

Under Section 8 of Rules and Interpretation of the USGA, there are several points to consider before a local rule can be adopted. This section authorizes local golf courses to create their own local rules. The Committee will use this rule as a guideline for creating local rules.

  • Section 8 will serve as a guidelineon how a local rule can be written.The local committee can also adoptwhat is written in the rules if theychoose to do so.
  • If the policies set by the localgolf course are consistent with thewritten rule by USGA, then the useof their own local rules areauthorized.
  • The committee is encouraged to usethe standardized local rules createdby USGA to avoid confusion on theplayer regarding the differentversions of the same rule in adifferent course or competition.However, it is permissible if thestandard written rules fit the localsituation of the course.
  • The Committee will bear theresponsibility of informing theplayers of the local rules.
  • The full text of the written localrules should be provided by theCommittee.
  • Although a summary of the full textof the standard model rule isavailable, the committee must see toit that the entire text of the rulesis relayed on their website ornoticeboard.
  • Any breach of the local rule willresult in the general penalty unlessotherwise stated by USGA.