Event Sanctioning | USA Rugby Member Resources

Event Sanctioning

Event Sanctioning is the means by which USA Rugby accident and liability insurance coverage is extended to tournaments and other rugby events. The practices, friendly competition, and league matches of compliant clubs are the only competitions considered sanctioned by default. Any other event may seek sanctioning by submission of a timely application to sanctions@usarugby.org.

A complete list of USA Rugby sanctioned events can be found here

Application Process

Event Sanction Application

Please ensure the submission of a sanction application at least four weeks in advance of any event seeking sanctioning. A complete application will meet the following criteria:

  1. Complete and signed Sanctioning Agreement
  2. Complete Sanctioning Application
  3. A complete listing of all clubs that have or are likely to confirm attendance at the time of the application. Please communicate any changes to the listing of attending clubs to sanctions@usarugby.org.

Applications are entered into processing upon delivery. All changes to the listing of participating clubs need be communicated to USA Rugby staff by email. An expedite fee will be assessed to late applications that do not meet the four week submission deadline.

It is advisable to contact both your local referee society and your local governance (SRO, College Conference, or Union) to avoid scheduling conflicts. Individual referee societies will have unique policies and procedures: be sure to reach out well in advance of your event.

Sanctioning Requirements

To achieve sanctioning, all participating clubs must be confirmed compliant in advance of the event. Compliance is achieved when a club has registered for the current membership cycle, maintains an appropriately certified coach on the club roster, and has met the roster minimum for competition. Any non-compliant clubs, both competitive and social, benefit from outreach from USA Rugby staff with situation-specific instructions on how to achieve this status. A timely application will ensure that all clubs are provided ample time to achieve compliance. Motley sides, or those without a relevant entry in the USA Rugby membership database, and non-contact clubs are provided with appropriate accommodations.

USA Rugby Safety Guidelines are available here. In the interest of player welfare, event directors must see that these guidelines are met. Please reference these guidelines early to ensure the feasibility of your venue and communicate any difficulties achieving the minimum requirements.


USA Rugby is excited to offer web space to sanctioned events. Through an electronic submission, event directors may upload match results along with approved photos and event recaps to their event-specific page of the USA Rugby website. Upon approval of an electronic submission, the associated event's entry on the Sanctioned Events listing will change to a hyperlink providing access to the event's webpage. Annual events that achieved sanctioning in the previous membership cycle may use this space for promotion.

More info on USA Rugby Sanctioning

A USA Rugby sanction is an official designation issued by USA Rugby which approves and licenses the holding of a Rugby Tournament or event outside of regular season competition and practices. The sanction is also a contract, which evidences the event's commitment to follow national and international rules, to ensure all participants are compliant with USA Rugby's rules and regulations and to provide a safe environment for the participants and spectators. Once the event has satisfied the sanction requirements, the event's application for sanction is approved.

Tournament Status: USA Rugby's sanction improves the public's perception of the event. A sanction tells athletes that an event is being run according to applicable competition rules and in accordance with safety guidelines and iRB Laws.

Liability Insurance: Most governmental entities including cities, counties, state highway departments, parks and community centers require general liability insurance for all events. USA Rugby does not charge tournament organizers for its sanction. You may apply for USA Rugby's sanction even if you do not require USA Rugby's Liability Coverage.

Participant Accident Coverage: Any registered member who is injured while participating in a sanctioned event, and is registered prior to injury, will be eligible for accident coverage.

Event Promotion: Sanctioned events will be posted on USA Rugby's website. Event directors are encouraged to upload match reports, results, and photos to their own event-specific webpage. Those events which realized sanctioning in the previous membership cycle may use this webspace for promotion.

Send your completed application to:

  • Fax: 303-539-0311
  • Email: sanctions@usarugby.org