Eastern Pennsylvania Rugby Union


  • Policies
  • Disciplinary Actions

The EPRU Disciplinary Committee consists of five members who serve at the request of the Executive Board. The committee reviews card and send-off reports submitted by referees and administers penalties in accordance with the USA Rugby Disciplinary Guidelines. Other problems with behavior of our members, on and off the pitch also fall under the Disciplinary Committee's jurisdiction. The committee strives to be fair to all concerned, to protect the participants, and good name of rugby.

Anyone interested in serving on the committee should contact the Director at Large, the President or the Secretary of the union.

EPRU Disciplinary Policies & Guidelines

EPRU Disciplinary Policies & Guidelines --  Revised December 2015 to include EPRU Variations on World Rugby Regulation 17

Preliminary Hearings 

Pursuant to the new disciplinary procedures issued by USA Rugby, every alleged offender is entitled to a hearing prior to the Disciplinary Committee imposing any sanction. 

The following rules will apply for those hearings:


You will receive notice of a booking or citation via email.  Notice via email to a player’s team shall be treated as constructive notice to the player.  It is the responsibility of the team to notify the player and

engage them in the disciplinary process, including advising them of all of these policies.  No additional action is required to demand a hearing, but you should review these rules to be sure you comply with all of the requirements of this Policy.

Suspension Pending Hearing

Any player who is shown a red card by the referee for any reason shall be suspended for not less than one match, or eight days, whichever is longer, unless and until such suspension is rescinded by the Disciplinary Committee pursuant to a hearing.

Call In Number

The call-in number and access code for all hearings will be provided to you via email with your notice for the hearing. 

Schedule of Hearings

Unless otherwise published at EPRU.rugby, hearings will start at 5:00pm every Wednesday.  All participants must be on the phone line and ready to proceed promptly at 5:00pm.  The order of cases will be at the discretion of the presiding member of the Disciplinary Committee. Except with the permission of the presiding member of the Disciplinary Committee, late callers may be deemed to have failed to

participate in the hearings.  Alleged offenders who are not present when their case is called will be deemed to have failed to participate in their hearing.

Mute Your Phones

All callers will keep their phone muted (electronically, not simply with your hand over the microphone) until their case is called.  Callers with undue noise or echo on their line will be asked to call in again

and may be asked to mute their phone during their case as well.

Standard of Review

The purpose of the Preliminary Hearing is to assign sanctions for factual incidents reported by the referee.  The Preliminary Hearing will only entertain factual rebuttal of the referee’s written report or

testimony if (a) there is clear and convincing evidence that the referee mis-identified the individual(s) involved in the incident or (b) there is incontrovertible evidence that the incident described by the referee did not take place.  An alleged offender must notify the presiding officer at the outset of the hearing that the alleged offender intends to present evidence related to one or both of these exceptions. 

Procedures & Decorum

All questions or statements shall be directed to the presiding member of the Disciplinary Committee.  Except as specifically authorized by the presiding member, only the members of the disciplinary committee shall be entitled to ask questions of the witnesses.  No honorifics are to be used (no “your honor”, etc…), but you should observe reasonable decorum (“Sir, Ma’am, Mister, Mizz, etc…” are appreciated).  

Evidence or Other Documents

If you intend to present any photographic or video evidence, you must do so before the hearing by noon on the day of the hearing.  Please email any such documents or photos to the member of the Disciplinary Committee assigned to administer your case.  Please reference the name of the alleged offender in the subject line of your email.  Evidence which is not provided prior to the hearing may be excluded at the discretion of the Disciplinary Committee. 


Each alleged offender shall be limited to two witnesses (the alleged offender, if testifying, plus one other; or two others who are not the alleged offender), unless the alleged offender requests, and is

granted, permission in-writing for additional witnesses by the Disciplinary Committee.  All Witnesses for all matters must be on the teleconference waiting to participate at the scheduled time listed above. 

Referee’s Report or Testimony

The referee’s report shall be presumed to be the referee’s testimony for the purposes of the preliminary hearing.  If the referee chooses to call in, then his/her testimony on the call shall be treated as his/her sole testimony on the matter and may not be impeached due to any inconsistency with the report as submitted. 

Conditional Waiver of Hearing

At or before the outset of each hearing, the presiding official will indicate, with his/her rationale, what the “entry point” for sanctions would be under IRB Regulation 17.  At that time, the alleged offender may choose to conditionally waive the remainder of the hearing, provided that the sanction does not exceed the entry point indicated.  If the alleged offender conditionally waives the remainder of the hearing, no appeal shall be permitted, provided that the actual sanction does not exceed the entry point.  This process may be completed via email prior to the hearing, in which case the waiver of appeal

shall still apply if the alleged offender chooses to waive his/her hearing. 

No Contest

If the alleged offender fails to request a hearing, or fails to participate after requesting a hearing, the Disciplinary Committee will treat the matter as if the alleged offender stipulated to the entirety of the Referee’s written report.  No further testimony shall be permitted from the referee during the hearing.


The Disciplinary Committee will endeavor to issue a written determination within 48 hours of the hearing.


Any offender who has not waived his or her right to a hearing shall be entitled to take an appeal to the Disciplinary Appeals Committee by sending written notice of the appeal.  The Disciplinary Appeals Committee will respond to your demand for appeal directly.

World Rugby Regulations

Specifically Regulations 17, 18, & 19

Disciplinary Actions

Disciplinary Actions