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Laws of Contract Rubber Bridge
Part 8 - Alternative 13...71
Alternative Club Laws

 
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81

This document is provided courtesy of the
American Contract Bridge League

2990 Airways Blvd. S Memphis TN 381163847
9013325586
S Fax 9013987754
 

ALTERNATIVE CLUB LAWS

When bridge is played at a club, it is often practicable to designate an impartial and experienced person as "Arbiter" for the game. The Arbiter interprets and applies the Laws after an irregularity occurs and generally assumes the role assigned to the "Director" in duplicate bridge. When such an Arbiter is available, certain laws can be modified so as to produce greater equity.
The "Club Laws" prescribe a somewhat different procedure after attention is drawn to an irregularity, and there is a different disposition for disputed claims. The principal changes, however, lie in the authority given to the Arbiter, after specified types of irregularity, to "adjust the score" of a deal once play is over. In adjusting a score, the Arbiter assigns a new result, the result he judges would have been achieved had the irregularity not occurred. The Arbiter should resolve any substantial doubt in favor of the non-offending side.
The alternative laws are in force only upon advance agreement by the players, or in accordance with the standing and published policy of a club. Any game may play under these Club Laws, so long as an Arbiter is nominated in advance; when there are more than four members of a table, a non-playing member can act as Arbiter.
 

CLUB LAW 13

The Arbiter must be called as soon as attention is drawn to an irregularity. Calling the Arbiter does not forfeit any rights to which a player may otherwise be entitled. Any player, including dummy subject to restrictions under Law 42 and Law 43, may draw attention to an irregularity and call the Arbiter. The fact that a player draws attention to an irregularity committed by his side does not affect the rights of the opponents.
After attention has been drawn to an irregularity, no player should call or play until the Arbiter has determined all matters in regard to rectification and to the assessment of a penalty. Premature correction of an irregularity on the part of an offender may subject him to further penalty.

CLUB LAW 14

The Arbiter assesses penalties when applicable. When these Club Laws provide an option among penalties, the Arbiter explains the options available.
The Arbiter may assign an adjusted score, but only when these Club Laws empower him to do so, or when the Law provides no indemnity to a non-offending contestant for the particular type of violation of law or propriety committed by an opponent. He may not assign an adjusted score on the ground that the penalty provided in the Law is unduly severe or unduly advantageous to either side.
 

CLUB LAW 16

If a player conveys information to his partner by means of a remark or question, or by an unmistakable hesitation or unwonted speed, special emphasis, tone, gesture, movement, mannerism or any other action that suggests a call, lead or plan of play; and if attention is drawn to the offense and the Arbiter is called, the Arbiter should require that the auction or play continue, reserving the right to assign an adjusted score if he considers that the result could have been affected by the illegal information.
After play ends, he should award an adjusted score to redress damage caused to the innocent side, when an opponent chose from among alternative logical actions one that could reasonably have been suggested by his partner's tempo, manner, remark, etc.
 

CLUB LAW 23

(Regular Law 23 stands intact but with the following addition, which applies as well to a change of call, an insufficient bid, a call out of rotation and an inadmissible call.)
When the penalty for an irregularity, under this or any other law, would compel the offender's partner to pass at his next turn, and when the Arbiter deems that this enforced pass will necessarily* damage the innocent side, the Arbiter may reserve the right to assign an adjusted score.
 

* The score should not be adjusted merely because the penalty happened to result in good fortune for the offending side. The word "necessarily" restricts score adjustment to those instances in which the offender could have known, at the time of his infraction, that it would be to his advantage to require partner to pass.
 

CLUB LAW 25

The penalties in Club Law 23 apply.
 

CLUB LAW 27

Regular Law 27 stands intact but with the following addition to subsection (a):
If the insufficient bid conveyed such substantial information as to damage the non-offending side, the Arbiter may assign an adjusted score.
 

CLUB LAW 30

The provisions of Club Law 23 may apply.

 

CLUB LAW 31

The provisions of Club Law 23 may apply.

 

CLUB LAW 32

The provisions of Club Law 23 may apply.

 

CLUB LAW 36

The provisions of Club Law 23 may apply.

 

CLUB LAW 38

The provisions of Club Law 23 may apply.

 

CLUB LAW 39

The provisions of Club Law 23 may apply.

 

CLUB LAW 40

If the Arbiter decides that a side has been damaged through its opponents' failure to explain the meaning of a call or play, he may award an adjusted score.
 

CLUB LAW 47

If a card retracted under sections (c) or (d) above gave substantial information to an opponent, the Arbiter may award an adjusted score.

 

CLUB LAW 55

Regular Law 55 stands intact, but the Arbiter may assign an adjusted score to redress any damage, as authorized in (b)(iii).

 

CLUB LAW 64

Regular Law 64 stands, except that, when after any established revoke, including those not subject to penalty, the Arbiter deems that the non-offending side is insufficiently compensated by this law for the damage caused, he should assign an adjusted score.

 

CLUB LAW 69

When declarer has made a claim or concession, play ceases (all play subsequent to a claim or concession must be voided by the Arbiter). Declarer must place and leave his hand face up on the table and forthwith make a comprehensive statement as to his proposed plan of play, including the order in which he will play his remaining cards.
Declarer's claim or concession is allowed, and the deal is scored accordingly, if both defenders agree to it. The claim or concession must be allowed if either defender has permitted any of his remaining cards to be mixed with another player's cards; otherwise, if either defender disputes declarer's claim or concession, the Arbiter must be called to adjudicate the result of the deal.
The Arbiter should adjudicate the result of the deal as equitably as possible to both sides, but any doubtful point should be resolved in favor of the defenders. He should proceed as follows:
(a) He should require the declarer to repeat the statement he made at the time of his claim. The Arbiter should then require all players to put their cards face up on the table and should hear the defenders' objections to the claim.
(b) When a trump is outstanding, he should award a trick to the defenders if

(i) 

in making his claim declarer made no statement about that trump, and

(ii) 

it is at all likely that declarer was unaware, at the tine of his claim, that a trump remained in a defender's hand, and

(iii) 

a trick could be lost to that trump by any normal play (an inferior or careless play can be normal, but not an irrational play).

(c) He should not accept from declarer any proposed line of play inconsistent with his statement. If declarer did not make an appropriate announcement at the time of his original claim, the Arbiter should not accept from declarer any unusual line of play, or any proposed play that requires a finesse* in a suit, unless an opponent failed to follow in that suit before the claim or concession, or would subsequently fail to follow in that suit on any conceivable line of play.
 

* For these purposes, a finesse is a play the success of which depends on finding one defender rather than the other with or without a particular card.
 

CLUB LAW 70

A defender makes a concession when he agrees to declarer's claim or when he announces that he will lose one or more of the remaining tricks.
A defender makes a claim when he announces that he will win one or more of the remaining tricks, or when he shows any or all of his cards to declarer for this purpose. If
(a) the claim pertains only to an uncompleted trick currently in progress, play proceeds normally; cards exposed or otherwise revealed by the defender in making his claim do not become penalty cards, but Club Law 16, Unauthorized Information, may apply to claimer's partner.
(b) the claim pertains to subsequent tricks, play ceases (all play subsequent to the claim should be voided by the Arbiter). The defender must place and leave his hand face up on the table and make a comprehensive statement as to his proposed plan of defense. The claim is allowed, and the deal scored accordingly, if declarer agrees to it. If declarer disputes the claim, the Arbiter must be called to adjudicate the result of the deal. He does so as equitably as possible to both sides, but should award to the declarer any trick that the defenders could loose by normal play (an inferior or careless play can be normal, but not an irrational play).

CLUB APPEALS COMMITTEE

Whenever possible, a club should establish an Appeals Committee to review decisions of the Arbiter; and any game may designate a committee to which appeals may be taken. If such a procedure has been agreed to or published in advance, any player may appeal any decision by the Arbiter. The Appeals Committee exercises all powers assigned by these Laws to the Arbiter and may overrule any of his decisions.
When an Arbiter's decision is overruled on appeal, only the scoring of the particular deal is affected; subsequent scores stand as recorded. If the committee's decision results in fulfillment of a contract originally recorded as defeated, or defeat of a contract recorded as fulfilled, then,
(a) for a contract now fulfilled: in addition to the other trick score and premium score, declarer's side receives a premium of 100 points for a partscore that would not then have increased the below-the-line score to 100; and for any other contract, declarer's side receives a premium according to vulnerability - 300 points if declarer's side was non-vulnerable, 400 points if declarer's was vulnerable and the defenders not, 500 points if both sides were vulnerable.
(b) for a contract now defeated, when the original scoring resulted in a game: in addition to the other premium score, the defenders receive a premium of 100 points if they alone had scored a partscore in that game; plus a premium of 500 points if declarer's side originally won two of two games, or 200 points if the defenders side originally won two of three games.

 

RULES FOR CLUB PROCEDURE

The following rules, governing membership in new and existing tables, have proven satisfactory in club use over a long period of years.
A. Definitions
Member - An applicant who has acquired the right to play at a table either immediately or in his turn.
Complete Table - A table with six members.
Incomplete Table - A table with four or five members.
Cut in - Assert the right to become a member of an incomplete table, or to become a member of a complete table at such time as it may become incomplete.
B. Time Limit on Right to Play
An applicant may not play in a rubber unless he has become a member of a table before a card is duly drawn for the selection of players or partners.
C. Newly Formed Tables
Four to six applicants may form a table. If there are more than six applicants, the six highest-ranking ones become members. The four highest-ranking members play the first rubber. Those who have not played, ranked in their order of entry into the room, take precedence over those who have played; the latter rank equally, except that players leaving existing tables to join the new table rank lowest. Precedence between those of equal rank is determined by drawing cards, the player who draws the highest-ranking card having precedence.
D. Cutting in
An application establishes membership in a table either forthwith or (if the table is complete) as soon as a vacancy occurs, unless applications in excess of the number required to complete a table are made at the same time, in which case precedence between applicants is established by drawing cards, as provided in the preceding rule.
E. Going out
After each rubber place must be made for any member who did not play that last rubber, by the member who has played the greatest number of consecutive rubbers at that table. Cards are drawn for precedence if necessary. A member who has left another existing table must draw cards, for his first rubber, with the member who would otherwise have played. A player who breaks up a game by leaving three players at a table may not compete against them for entry at another table until each of them has played at least one rubber.
F. Membership Limited to One Table
No one can be a member of more than one table at the same time, unless a member consents, on request, to make a fourth at another table and announces his intention of returning to his former table as soon as his place at the new table can be filled. Failure to announce such intention results in loss of membership at his former table.

 

FOUR-DEAL BRIDGE

Four-Deal Bridge is a form of Rubber Bridge much played in clubs and well suited to home play. Long rubbers are avoided; extra players need wait no longer than the time (about twenty minutes) required to complete four deals. The game is also called Club Bridge or Chicago (for the city in which it originated).
The Laws of Contract Bridge and Rules for Club Procedure are followed, except as modified by the following rules.
A rubber consists of a series of four deals that have been bid and played. If a deal is passed out, the same player deals again and the deal passed out does not count as one of the four deals.
A fifth deal is void if attention is drawn to it at any time before there has been a new cut for partners or the game has terminated; if the error is not discovered in time for correction, the score stands as recorded. A sixth or subsequent deal is unconditionally void and no score for such a deal is ever permissible.
In case fewer than four deals are played, the score shall stand for the incomplete series and the fourth deal need not be played unless attention is drawn to the error before there has been a new cut for partners or the game has terminated.
When the players are pivoting,* the fact that the players have taken their proper seats for the next rubber shall be considered a cut for partners.
Vulnerability is not determined by previous scores but by the following schedule:
First deal: Neither side vulnerable.
Second and Third deals: Dealer's side vulnerable, the other side not vulnerable.
Fourth deal: Both sides vulnerable.
For making or completing a game (100 or more trick points), a side receives a premium of 300 points if on that deal it is not vulnerable or 500 points if on that deal it is vulnerable. There is no additional premium for winning two or more games, each game premium being scored separately.

score pad

As a reminder of vulnerability in Four-Deal Bridge, two intersecting diagonal lines should be drawn near the top of the score pad, as follows:
The numeral "1" should be inserted in that one of the four angles thus formed that faces the first dealer. After play of the first deal is completed, "2" is inserted in the next angle in clockwise rotation, facing the dealer of the second deal. The numerals "3" and "4" are subsequently inserted at the start of the third and fourth deals, respectively, each in the angle facing the current dealer.
A correctly numbered diagram is conclusive as to vulnerability. These is no redress for a bid influenced by the scorer's failure to draw the diagram or for an error or omission in inserting a numeral or numerals in the diagram. Such error or omission should, upon discovery, be immediately corrected and the deal or deals should be scored or rescored as though the diagram and the number or numbers thereon had been properly inserted.
A partscore or scores made previously may be combined with a partscore made in the current deal to complete a game or 100 or more trick points. The game premium is determined by the vulnerability, on that deal, of the side that completes the game. When a side makes or completes a game, no previous partscore of either side may thereafter be counted toward game.
A side that makes a partscore in the fourth deal, if the partscore is not sufficient to complete a game, receives a premium of 100 points. This premium is scored whether or not the same side or the other side has an uncompleted partscore. There is no separate premium for making a partscore in any other circumstance.
When a player deals out of turn, and there is no right to a redeal, the player who should have dealt retains his right to call first, but such right is lost if it is not claimed before the actual dealer calls. If the actual dealer calls before attention is drawn to the deal out of turn, each player thereafter calls in rotation. Vulnerability and scoring values are determined by the position of the player who should have dealt, regardless of which players actually dealt or called first. Neither the rotation of the deal nor the scoring is affected by a deal out of turn. The next dealer is the player who would have dealt next if the deal had been in turn.
The following practices, not required, have proved acceptable in some clubs and games:

(i) 

Since the essence of the game is speed, if a deal is passed out, the pack that has been shuffled for the next deal should be used by the same dealer.

(ii) 

The net score of a rubber should be translated into even hundreds (according to American custom) by crediting as 100 points any fraction thereof amounting to 50 or more points: e.g., 750 points count as 800; 740 points count as 700 points.

(iii) 

No two players may play a second consecutive rubber as partners at the same table. If two players draw each other again, the player who has drawn the highest card should play with the player who has drawn the third-highest, against the other two players.

(iv) 

To avoid confusion as to how many deals have been played: Each deal should be scored, even if there is no net advantage to either side (for example, when one side is entitled to 100 points for undertrick penalties and the other side is entitled to 100 points for honors). In a result that completes a game, premiums for overtricks, game, slam, or making a doubled contract should be combined with the trick score to produce one total, which is entered below the line (for example, if a side makes 2S doubled and vulnerable with an overtrick, 870 should be scored below the line, not 120 below the line and 50, 500, and 200 above the line).

 


* In a pivot game, partnerships for each rubber follow a fixed rotation.

 

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