• General Referee FAQs

    What is a USA Rugby Referee?

    A USA Rugby referee is a certified referee who works to ensure player welfare and a fair game for both teams. He or she has demonstrated an understanding of the laws of the game and is committed to professional development.

    What does the USA Rugby Referee Department do?

    The USA Rugby Referee Department manages both high performance and community level officiating. At the high performance level, we manage referee development and appointments for all National caliber events. At the community level, we manage all referee education courses and facilitate the recruitment and retention of referees through local organizing bodies.

    How do I find games to officiate in my area?

    To find games to officiate in your area, please see the referee contacts page and look for the corresponding contact in your area.

    What age do I have to be to become a referee?

    There is no age restriction to become a referee. Best practice is for an interested individuals to become a Touch Judge first, then move to Referee when prepared to take over a match. Minors wishing to referee should referee matches at their own age or younger until they turn 18. The successful completion of a Level 1 course will allow individuals of all ages to become referees.

  • Referee Membership FAQ

    How much does it cost to register as a referee?

    The USA Rugby fee to register as a referee is $65. Team rates may apply. Referee membership includes accident insurance, third party liability insurance, and the traditional member benefits and discounts associated with USA Rugby affiliates.

    Why should I register as a referee?

    Many local organizations require that their constituents register as a USA Rugby referee before they can be assigned to a game.

    How do I register?

    To register as a referee, please click here. If you are already registered as a member, but would like to dual register as a referee please click here. From this page, you will click on the dual role registration form link.

    Why is there a fee to register as a referee?

    The referee registration fee will provide you with liability and accident insurance, continuing education opportunities to learn and develop as a referee, access to the USA Rugby Referee department and resources and much more!

    Who do I contact if I have difficulty with the online registration process?

    If you are having trouble registering as a referee member please contact: membership@usa.rugby. If you are having trouble registering for a referee course, please contact: membership@usa.rugby.

    Where can I find information on my certification status?

    To check your current certification status, visit https://membership.usarugby.org/RegistrationStatus.aspx, you will type in your name or CIPP number in the search field, wait a moment and select your profile from the drop down list. Click search and you will see your officiating status and certification level.

    Questions about certification status can be directed to Training and Education at education@usa.rugby.

    When does my referee membership expire?

    Your membership will expire August 31st. Membership dues are required annually.

    Referee certification and/or accreditation (acquired from the completion of courses) does not expire, but should be updated with continuing education to ensure referees are prepared on the latest law and safety considerations.

  • Referee Certification and Course FAQ

    Why should I take a referee certification course/ become certified?

    USA Rugby certification courses will prepare you to manage games while maintaining the best interests of the players. Without the Level 1 certification you will not be able to referee matches that involve contact. Level I certification verifies that you have been educated in a World Rugby Match Official course and are endorsed by USA Rugby.

    Do I have to complete my educational components in any particular order?

    Particular courses have pre-requisites, for these courses you must complete certain courses in order. These prerequisites can be found on the USA Rugby LMS.

    How long is my certification valid?

    Certification and/or accreditation are valid indefinitely for all courses other than the Educator course. Educator certification must be renewed every three years.

    What if there are not any courses in my area?

    Course locations vary from year to year. If there is not a course in your area, feel free to contact your local referee organization and they can assist you in scheduling a course. This is a great way to begin refereeing!

    How Much Do Courses Cost?

    Referee training courses range in price from $10 to $250. To see pricing for each specific course please visit: https://education.usarugby.org/pathways/referee

    Should I take a course if I do not plan to officiate?

    Referee Training courses are great for all individuals. From coaches to parents, these training courses enhance one's understanding of the game.

    If I am new to the game, which course should I take first?

    The online touch judge course is a great place to start, the Touch Judge and the Level 1 Officiating course. The Touch judge course is a shorter course and can be completed in four hours or less. It will train you to act as a touch judge and is a great way to get involved in officiating. The Level 1 Officiating course is more intensive, taking eight hours to complete. It will train you to act as a center referee.

    If I am returning to officiating and want to take a refresher course, may I audit?

    Yes, if you are already a certified or accredited referee, meaning that you have successfully completed a particular course, you may audit that course at no cost. If a course is audited materials will not be provided.

    Are Local Referee Organizations the only groups that can set up or host courses?

    No, any group may host a course. To learn more about how to host a course, please visit HOST A COURSE

    Do I get a certificate to verify my certification?

    Yes, certificates will be sent from World Rugby for all courses.

    How do I pay for a course?

    When you register online you can pay with a credit card. We offer a secure payment option.

    Who do I contact if I have difficulty with the online registration process?

    If you are having trouble registering as a referee member please contact: jwilber@usa.rugby. If you are having trouble registering for a referee course, please contact: rcrips@usa.rugby.

    Where can I find information on course offerings?

    Information on course offerings can be found at https://www.usa.rugby/events-calendar/#filter=.referee-clinic. Here you can learn more about a course, find out where courses are being run, and register for a course!

    Once I have completed my course requirements, how long does it take to receive my certificate?

    It should take approximately two weeks to receive your certificate, once you have completed all course requirements. If you have not received a certificate of accreditation by that time, please contact Robert Crips at rcrips@usa.rugby

    Do I need to be registered to take a referee certification course?

    If you are not registered with USA Rugby, you cannot become a certified referee. Anyone may audit a referee training course to learn more about refereeing, but they will not be certified by USA Rugby to referee the game.