Disciplinary Procedures

Scottish Rugby recognises the need for effective disciplinary rules, together with procedures to ensure that those rules are applied fairly. Discipline, both on and off the field, is integral to the game. This is reflected through adherence to the Laws, the Regulations and Scottish Rugby’s Core Values.

World Rugby Regulations

World Rugby has issued two Regulations covering the disciplinary processes associated with the game. A copy of the World Rugby Regulations can be found at:

Regulation 17: Illegal and/or foul play
Regulation 18: Disciplinary and judicial matters

News : On 17 May 2021 World Rugby indicated that with effect from 1 July 2021 an amended the WR Regulation 21 Sanctions Table will come into force. As per the Scottish Rugby Disciplinary Rules, the updated Sanctions Table will be adopted in Scotland from its effective date. The revised Sanction Table makes reference to the use of a "Coaching Intervention" as a possible method of reducing head contact Foul Play sanctions by 1 week. For the avoidance of doubt the "Coaching Intervention" process is NOT being adopted in Scottish Rugby's domestic disciplinary processes.

Scottish Rugby’s Discipline Rules and Standards

Scottish Rugby has adopted the World Rugby Regulations within its own Disciplinary Rules. These Disciplinary Rules support our objective of ensuring that justice is obtained through our disciplinary proceedings, and that decisions are made in a fair, consistent, independent and timely manner.

World Rugby has also issued a Code of Conduct which Scottish Rugby is bound to monitor and enforce. This code of conduct has been incorporated in the Scottish Rugby Code of Conduct for the Game.

All clubs, players and other persons connected to the game are required to comply with the Code of Conduct and the Disciplinary Rules.

Guide to Disciplinary Hearings

Scottish Rugby has produced a Guide to Disciplinary Hearings to assist those subject to a disciplinary complaint or are otherwise involved in the disciplinary process:

We would particularly recommend that anyone attending a Disciplinary Hearing with a mobility issue or other disability brings this to the attention of the Discipline Manager in advance of the Hearing in order that appropriate adjustments can be considered.

Note: Reading the Guide is not a substitute for reading the Disciplinary Rules. In the event of any conflict / inconsistency between the Guide and the Rules, the Disciplinary Rules will prevail.

Specific Sanctioning Matters

Meaningful Sanctions

It is a requirement under World Rugby Regulations that any sanction imposed by the independent Disciplinary Committee is "meaningful" in terms of the individual's rugby schedule. The following guidance to Disciplinary Committees has been provided in this regard:

Enhanced Sanctions

At times it is deemed to be in the best interests of the game to provide additional advice to referees and disciplinary committee members to deter particular offences. At present such guidance is in force in respect of the Abuse of Match Officials. The guidance provided is available below:

Contact with the Head and Neck

World Rugby has confirmed that offences involving contact with the head and neck are to carry an automatic mid-range entry point for sanctioning. This is reflected in the Sanctions Table attached to World Rugby Regulation 17 and the Scottish Rugby Disciplinary Rules.

Sanctions Imposed during the Current Season

The following sanctions have been imposed by the independent Disciplinary Committee during the current and previous seasons.

Contact details

If you can't find the information you're looking for, have a specific query or wish to report any matter associated with our Disciplinary Rules please contact Scottish Rugby's Discipline Manager, Richard McGhee, at [email protected] or 0131 346 5029.

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