Referee Handbook October 2020



Item 1: Referee Administration

  1. The duty of the State Referee Committee (SRC) is to oversee all administrative processes, organize informational clinics, and improve the overall quality of soccer officiating in the state of Rhode Island.
  2. Referees who work in the state of Rhode Island will come under the jurisdiction of the
    SRC.
  3. Communications from the SRC will generally be done via email. It as strongly advised
    that all referees make sure the SRC and Assignors have their correct email address.
  4. The Referee Committee is comprised of the following positions:
    • State Referee Administrator (SRA)
    • State Youth Referee Administrator (SYRA)
    • Secretary
    • Treasurer
    • State Director of Instruction (SDI)
    • State Director of Assessment (SDA)
    • State Assignor Coordinate (SAC)

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Item 2: Referee Registration

  1. For a person to be registered as a referee in RI, the person must reside, work, or do
    their primary officiating within RI.
  2. In order to be registered at the current grade level, all referees and State Referees must:
    • successfully pass the appropriate written examination every year ;
    • pass the physical fitness test every year (Regional Referees only) ;
    • officiate a minimum number of affiliated games required by the SRC.
  3. The USSF Referee Administrative Handbook gives complete details as to the qualifications and registrations of Referees.
  4. In order for a referee to recertify for the next calendar year, that person must not have any sanctions currently implied, and must be in good standing with the SRC.
  5. Registration Fees are as follows:
    • New Grassroots Referee: $70
    • Recertify as a Grassroots Referee: $50
    • Recertify as a Regional Referee: $
    • Recertify as an Emeritus Referee: $50
    • The purpose of collecting the Assessment Fee at time of registration is to simplify paperwork and check processing for those people who are required by USSF to be assessed during the year. By collecting the Assessing Fee at
      registration, these officials will have already paid for their assessment for the next year, and thus only need to get the assessment completed to retain their grade.

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Item 3: Referee Grades


For complete details about each referee grade, follow this link to the USSF Referee Pathway page .

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Item 4: Assignments

  1. All assignors will attempt to contact match officials as far ahead of the scheduled match date as possible.
  2. Referees will receive game assignments by various methods of communication:
    • By Email: the referee must confirm the assignment by responding to the email message ;
    • By Phone: the referee must confirm the assignment at the time of the call (or shortly thereafter if more information is necessary) ;
    • By Website: the referee must login to a website on a regular basis to accept and/or decline game assignments ;
    • Failing to confirm an assignment in a timely manner (usually 48 to 72 hours) will indicate that the referee has declined the assignment.
  3. Game officials must arrive at the field at least 30 minutes before the scheduled match start time (except
    for circumstances beyond the official’s control, such as a previous match assignment).
  4. Game officials must be properly uniformed and dressed in matching shirt colors and sleeve length. The match Referee determines which uniform the team of officials shall wear.
  5. Failure to appear at a confirmed assignment shall be subject to the disciplinary actions described in Item 6.

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Item 5: Game Reports

  1. Referees are required to completely fill out all Game Reports, and to submit them to the proper authority within 24 hours of the end of the match.
  2. Failure to properly submit a Game Report shall be subject to the disciplinary actions described in Item 6.
  3. It is the responsibility of the referee to obtain the correct mailing address of the league or the correct website where the game report can be submitted online.

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Item 6: Disciplinary Actions and Appeal Process

  1. Complete details regarding ethics and grievance procedures can be found in the USSF Referee Administrative Handbook. For simplicity, the major items from this document shall be included here.
  2. The following is a list of the standard disciplinary actions that the SRC may take against a referee, instructor, assignor, or assessor:
    • First offense: the person will receive a letter of reprimand (usually via email) ;
    • Second offense: the person will be fined the game fee appropriate for that match ;
    • Third offense: the actions will be brought to the attention of a Disciplinary Committee for further review.
  3. The person filing an appeal must do so in writing (within 30 days of the notice of the original decision) to the SRA, with copies going to the Grievance Committee..
  4. Any imposed fines must be paid before the appeal can be heard. If the appeal is successful, the fines will be returned.

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Item 7: Match Assessments

  1. Assessors must submit the appropriate Match Assessment Forms to the SDA within 72 hours of the end of the match.
  2. Assessment fees must be paid in advance to the SRC Treasurer.

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Item 8: Special Match Occurrences

  1. If one or both teams cannot field enough players within the league’s grace period, the match shall not be played, and the Referee shall note this in the Game Report (and a copy of the Game Report shall be given to the SRC). The officials for that match shall be entitled to a full game fee. The Referee will submit a request to the SRC if the officials are not paid on the field.
  2. If the Referee decides that the field is not suitable for playing the match, the game shall not be played, and the Referee shall note this in the Game Report (and a copy of the Game Report shall be given to the SRC). Each official for that match shall receive $15 for travel expenses.
  3. If all referees are sent to the wrong field or have the wrong time for the match, they will be paid $15 for travel expenses. The fee will be paid by either the league or the SRC, dependent upon where the error occurred.
  4. If a full compliment of officials is not present at the scheduled starting time of the match, the match may be played with volunteers. These volunteers shall be considered Club Assistants, responsible for signaling that the ball has gone out of play and nothing else. The volunteers shall receive no compensation, unless stated otherwise by the league’s rules. The fees for the absent officials shall be evenly divided and returned to the teams. The Referee shall note the absence of officials and return of fees in the Game Report (and a copy of the Game Report shall be given to the SRC). Any referees who officiate a match using the “2-man system” shall be subject to disciplinary actions.
  5. If a match is abandoned, the officials shall be entitled to a full game fee. The Referee shall note the exact circumstances which caused the match to be abandoned in the Game Report (and a copy of the Game Report shall be given to the SRC), and shall inform the League President and the SRA/SYRA by telephone as well.
  6. If a Referee is assaulted during a match, the Referee must be prepared to follow the guidelines in the USSF Referee Administrative Handbook so that administrative and enforcement agencies can properly do their job. A copy of the USSF Referee Report can be downloaded from the USSF Web Site. Referees are expected to make copies of this report for their own use. In the event of a referee assault, this report must be submitted immediately after the match to the appropriate league president, the SRA, and the President of RISA or Soccer Rhode Island (SRI) (depending on the governing body of the match). In addition, a call should be placed immediately after the match to the SRA advising him/her of the assault.

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Item 9: Travel Policy for Tournaments and Special Game Assignments

  1. For the purposes of consistency, and due to the physical size of the state of Rhode Island, officials will only be compensated for travel outside of the state of Rhode Island.
  2. Officials will receive a per diem fee and compensation for mileage at the current IRS rate. The exact amounts will be determined in a contract specific to the assignment or tournament.
  3. When hotel accommodations are required, the SRC shall be responsible for payment (either up front or as a reimbursement) for the hotel rooms.
  4. The SRC shall not reimburse an official for car rental unless extenuating circumstances mandate such an action, in which case the official must get permission from the SRA before the rental agreement is made.
  5. Referees who need to fly to a site shall make their own travel arrangements and submit the bills to the SRC for payment.

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Item 10: Referee of the Year Awards

  1. RISA and SRI will present three awards on an annual basis: Male Youth Referee of the Year, Female Youth Referee of the Year, and Referee of the Year.
  2. The criterion used to determine the winners of these awards shall be determined by the SRC.
  3. Anyone wishing to nominate an individual for one of these awards should contact the SRA or SYRA.

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