Acceptable Scores

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Acceptability of Scores for Handicap Posting

The scores a player submits for handicap purposes are at the core of the calculation of their handicap index.  A score must satisfy certain conditions for it to be acceptable for handicap purposes, providing confidence that it will produce reasonable evidence of the players playing ability and ultimately a Handicap Index reflective of demonstrated ability.

Acceptable Scores

A score is acceptable for handicap purposes if the round has been played:

  • In an authorized format of play, over at least the minimum number of holes required for either a 9-hole or an 18-hole score to be acceptable,
  • In the company of at least one other person, who may also act as a marker,
  • By the Rules of Golf,
  • On a golf course with a current Course Rating and Slope Rating.

Scores Not Acceptable for Handicap Purposes:

Some formats of play and scores are not acceptable for handicap purposes and must not be posted to a player’s scoring record.

  • While being coached on the course
  • When using non-conforming equipment
  • When the number or type of golf clubs is restricted
  • When playing alone and score cannot be verified by another person.  Note: anyone accompanying a golfer during a round, (e.g. caddie, friend not playing) would make the score acceptable
  • Not playing the required number of holes
  • When a player does not play their own ball (for example a scramble)
  • When scores are made on a course with no USGA Course Rating or Slope Rating
  • Breaches the Rules of Golf and the correct penalty is not applied under the Rules of Golf, or deliberately ignores a Rule of Golf

The above list is not exhaustive and if a player is in doubt as to the acceptability of a score, it is recommended to check with the RHGC Handicap Committee.

For more information see these resources from WHS/USGA:

Poster:           Scores Acceptable for Handicap Purposes

Video:            Scores Acceptable for Handicap Purposes

Full Rule:       3.1 Acceptability of Scores