Membership FAQs


Event Sanctioning is the means by which USA Rugby accident and liability insurance coverage is extended to tournaments outside of league competition.

The following activities are considered sanctioned by default:

  • Practices of compliant clubs (i.e. USA Rugby member clubs).
  • League play of compliant clubs in a competition (i.e. regular season, or 7s season, or similar). Ordinarily this means only matches between the teams who belong to that competition (“competition" meaning a Union, division, conference, SYRO, league, or similar rugby body).
  • Friendly one-off matches between compliant clubs (regardless of the competition/League they’re in).

A 'compliant club' is a club which has:

  • 8+ players registered to the Club in Rugby Xplorer, and
  • paid their Club Fee in Rugby Xplorer, and
  • a compliant World Rugby L1 Coach registered to the club in Rugby Xplorer.

Any other event may seek sanctioning by submission of a timely application.

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

  • Complete and sign Sanctioning Agreement and Application
  • Payment of the Tournament Sanctioning Fee ($150)
  • 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

Applications are entered into processing upon delivery. All changes to the listing of participating clubs need to be communicated to USA Rugby staff by email ASAP. An expedite fee will be assessed to late applications that do not meet the four week submission deadline. A complete list of teams MUST be submitted no more than a week out from the start of the tournament.

It is advisable to contact both your local referee society and your local governance organization to avoid scheduling conflicts. Individual referee societies will have unique policies and procedures: be sure to reach out well in advance of your event.


To achieve sanctioning, all participants must be confirmed compliant in advance of the event. Compliance is achieved when a team has registered for the current membership cycle, maintains an appropriately certified coach on the club roster (for competitive events only), and has met the roster minimum for competition. 

Any non-compliant teams, both competitive and social, can either choose to register for a full USA Rugby membership or will have the option to pay for a temporary membership that will cover them just for the dates of the event. 

A timely application will ensure that all teams are provided ample time to achieve compliance.  All sanctioned events must have all applicable adults SafeSport certified, and background checked. Additional information on how to do this can be found by reaching out to USAR. 

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.



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 World Rugby Laws.

Liability Insurance: Most government entities including cities, counties, state highway departments, parks and community centers require general liability insurance for all events. 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 and may use their sanctioning status with USA Rugby to promote their event.

For questions and inquiries on USA Rugby Event Sanctioning, please email