Rectification of Fouled Movements


Match Play

Whenever it is possible to do so, the Director will correct a fouled board and allow play to proceed. The team responsible for the fouling will be fined 3 IMPs. (6 IMPs if cards are exchanged between partners).

When it is not possible to correct the board the following provisions apply:

(a)   If the non-offending side gained a result which in the opinion of the Director was superior to the par for the deal, an adjusted score greater than 3 IMPs may be awarded allowing them the benefit of their superior score. There is no fine and the hand is not redealt.

(b)   If the offending side gained a result which, in the opinion of the Director, was neutral or superior to the par for the deal, the board is redealt and the offending side fined 3 IMPs.

(c)   If both sides were at fault, the board is redealt and there is no fine.

Ranking Play (Match Points)

Provided a board has been played more than 3 times OR by more than 1/3 of the field, each pair's score is ranked and match-pointed in their own group to obtain (M). Then the final match points to be awarded (F) is calculated for every pair in the field as follows:-

 F = (M x E) + (E - A)


Where:  F = match points (double) to be awarded to the pair.
              M = match points (double) when ranked in their group.           
              E = total number of scores in the field.
              A = number of scores in the group.

Fractions are rounded to 1 decimal place.

For 1,2 or 3 fouled tables;

1    50%
2     55% 45%
3    60% 50% 40%

A)     Tie pairs share the difference

B)    Pairs in no way at fault receive an indemnity of 10% and the provisions of Law 88 apply if their score for the session was greater than awarded here.

C)    A pair partially to blame receives no increase (failure to detect a fouled board puts a pair partially at fault).

D)    A pair responsible receives a penalty of 10%.


When it is not possible to award an adjusted result or an irregularity prevents the play of a hand, theDirector will award an average or an average plus or an average minus depending on who is responsible for the irregularity. When both sides have contributed to the irregularity the Director may award an average to both sides:

Total Points = the median score (50%)
Match Points = half the available score for the board.
Imps = zero IMPs to each side


When a side is required to take an average through no fault or choice of its own it is entitled to an average plus

Total points = Either at least 60% of the available score for the whole session
Match Points = Either at least 60% of the available score for the board or their average score for the session whichever is the highest.
IMPS = Either 3 IMPs or their average IMPs per board for the session whichever is the highest.

When a side is wholly or mostly to blame for an irregularity preventing the play of a deal the Director will assign them an average minus

Total Points = at most 40% score for the deal for the whole session
Match Points = at most 40% of the available score for the board
IMPS = 3 IMPs conceded to the opponents.

Differential Adjustments

Law 12 allows the Director the discretionary power to make a differential adjustment, i.e. to assign two separate results at a table for the same deal. A differential adjustment is appropriate when both sides have violated procedure and may have the result altered so that both sides receive an inferior score. A differential adjustment is also appropriate when a player has been misled by an opponent's inadvertent mannerism or change of tempo in bidding or play. Section II of the Proprieties states that inferences drawn from such sources are at one's own risk. In these circumstances the Director:

(a)   allows the non-offender's score to stand.
(b)   adjusts the offender's result by disallowing any tricks gained through the deception.

If a player is misled by an opponent's deliberate mannerism or change of tempo however, he is entitled to an adjusted result and the offenders should be penalised. In Ranking Play, the non-offender's result is used for the purposes of computing and balancing the scores, with the offending side being temporarily ascribed the comple­ment of the non-offender's score. Subsequently, the offender's score is adjusted so that they are credited instead with the score earned by their adjusted result at other tables. In Match Play, a differential will usually produce two different IMP results. This may result in both sides winning, or both sides losing a close match and will usually cause the Victory Points not to balance.

e.g. In a match tied at 24 IMPs each apart from the board where a different­ial adjustment has caused the non-offenders to lose 3 IMPs and the offenders to square the board, the result is:

(a)   a tie for the offenders 10 VPs out of 20
(b)   a loss for the non-offenders 9VPs

Adjusted Results

Law 12 gives the Director the power to alter a contract or a result to indemnify a side which has been damaged by:

1.   An opponent taking advantage of unauthorised information conveyed by partner's mannerism, gesture, comment, change of tempo etc.

2.   Being misled by misinformation due to an opponent's

(a)   failure to alert
(b)   belated alert
(c)   incomplete explanation of partnership methods
(d)   mistaken explanation of partnership agreement

The Director will not adjust the result when the side has been damaged by

a)   a deliberately deceptive call or play which violates stated partnership agreement.
b)   an inadvertent violation of partnership agreement such as a bidding error due to forgetfulness or confusion
c)   their own misunderstanding of a correct explanation of an opponent's call or play.

None of the above constitutes misinformation for the purposes of the Laws. The Director may also adjust a contract or result where the procedures or penalty provisions of the Laws have not adequately compensated the non-offenders for damage caused by an opponent's irregularity. The Director does not have the right to adjust the result on the grounds that the Laws have punished the offenders too leniently or too severely. The prime consideration is to restore equity. This can be achieved by:

(a)   Changing the final contract and result when the bidding has been affected by the irregularity

(b)   Transferring one or more tricks from the offending side to their opponents when the irregularity has affected the play of the cards

(c)   Assigning an average, an average plus, or an average minus when it is not practical to adjust the contract or the result, or when the hand cannot be replayed.

In addition to any of the above adjustments, the Director may impose a fine (in points, matchpoints, - IMPS or Victory Points) on the offender's side, the amount of the fine to be subtracted from their total scores for the event. Such fine should not have a direct effect on their opponent's score - except in Teams Matches, of course.

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