Section 4 – The Players
Rule 4-1 – Player Registration▲Top
(1) A player is officially registered only when all of the following conditions have been met:
(1.1) The player has completed her online registration process along with waiver acknowledgement.
(1.2) The player’s online League ID Card has been created and updated with the team’s name, the player’s name, the team’s current division and the League’s current season identification.
(1.3) The player’s registration fee has been paid in full.
(2) It is the responsibility of each player and team to ensure that players only register in a division that they are deemed eligible to compete in per League Rules.
(3) All teams can register new players (players that have not been registered with another team) up to March 31st of the current Winter season.
(4) A player can only register on one team during the Winter season.
(5) In the Spring season, players can register on a second team, as long as the teams do not play in the same division.
Rule 4-2 –Minimum Player Age Requirements▲Top
(1) Premier, Selects A & B do not have a minimum age restriction. For Divisions 1-5 and U-21 players must have turned 17 years of age by December 31st of the current year.
(2) Registering/playing an individual that does not meet the age requirements of the division may result in a fine, forfeit of matches in which the player participated, forfeiture fine(s), suspension of the player and team coach and/or official. See Appendix B for fine details.
(3) Proof of age may be required at the time of registration for all players. Proof of identification may be your driver’s license, BC ID Card, or passport.
(4) Additional proof may be required at the request of the League.
Rule 4-3 – Player Registration Time Requirements▲Top
(1) Players must be registered a minimum of 24 hours prior to playing in a League match and a minimum of seven full days prior to a Provincial or Divisional Cup match as per BC Soccer.
(2) A player can play in a League match for up to six days from the date of their registration, without a League ID Card, if she produces her online registration receipt for the Referee’s inspection.
(2.1) A player playing on their online registration receipt must also provide some other form of picture ID for proof as specified in rule 4-2.
(2.2) After the six days have elapsed from the date of registration, a player MUST have a current League ID Card before she can play in any League or League Cup match.
(2.3) Alternate identification is not acceptable after the six days from the date of registration have elapsed.
Rule 4-4 – Team Rosters▲Top
(1) There is no limit to the size of team rosters with the exception of Premier teams which are limited to a roster capacity of 30 registered players.
(2) Premier teams may not transfer or release players after January 15th.
Rule 4-5 – Playing/Registration of Ineligible Players▲Top
(1) Any ineligible player may be subject to a fine, suspension, and possible expulsion from the League.
(2) Any team who plays a player that is not registered with the team and/or is registered with another team, with the exception of those on valid Intra-Club or Youth to Senior Permits, may be subject to a fine, coach suspension, team bond and possible expulsion from the League.
Rule 4-6 – Player and Team Official ID Cards▲Top
(1) All registered players, coaches, assistant coaches and managers will be supplied an online ID card produced by the League.
(2) Players must upload a current (within 30 days of registration) good quality (i.e. no sunglasses, hats, or hoodies) 1x1 headshot with their online registration to be used for their League ID Card.
(3) All coaches, assistant coaches and team managers must upload a current (within 30 days of registration) good quality (i.e. no sunglasses, hats, or hoodies) 1x1 headshot to be used for their League ID Card.
(4) Failure to present ID cards to the Referee prior to a match is to be noted in the match report and will result in a fine to the team as per Appendix B, and may result in a forfeiture of the match.
(5) Only team officials/staff as named on the team list, with a valid MWSL ID Card are permitted on the team bench or in the team technical area.
(6) Players who are playing on a BCSA Youth to Senior Permit (YSP) must present their Youth player card to the Referee prior to the match.
Rule 4-7 – Player Transfers▲Top
(1) Players are permitted to transfer from one team to another up to the transfer deadline of January 15th as per BC Soccer Rules and Regulations.
(2) Completed, signed and dated transfer forms must be sent to the League office for processing.
(3) Players must be transferred a minimum of 24 hours prior to playing in an League match and a minimum of one week (7 full days) before any League Cup match.
Rule 4-8 – Player Releases▲Top
(1) To release a player, the releasing team must submit to the League office a fully completed, signed and dated open-ended transfer form (available from BC Soccer’s website) prior to January 15th. The completed form will be provided to the player.
Rule 4-9 – Youth to Senior Permits (YSP)▲Top
(1) Youth to Senior Permits allow players from any youth club who are registered on a youth team to participate in a League or League Cup match.
(1.1) All teams, with the exception of Masters and Classics, may permit youth players on a Youth to Senior Permit.
(2) There is no limit to the number of Youth to Senior Permits that may be used by a team in a single League match.
(3) A maximum of two (2) permits may be used by a team in a single League Cup match.
(3.1) The total number of permitted players allowed (Youth to Senior & Intra-Club combined) in a single League Cup match is two (2).
(3.2) Any team adding players on Youth to Senior Permits, or in combination with Intra-Club Permits, may not exceed a game day roster limit of 14 players in a single League Cup match.
(4) Youth to Senior Permits must be received by email at the League office Friday Noon (12:00 pm) prior to the match each week to ensure they are signed and returned.
(5) Youth to Senior Permit forms must be filled out completely and signed by the representatives of:
- The MWSL Team
- The Youth Team
- A Youth District Representative
- A MWSL Director or League Manager
- BC Soccer
(6) Two copies of the Youth to Senior Permits are required for presentation to the Referee.
(7) Youth player’s youth team ID card must be available for inspection by the Referee.
(8) There is no limit to the number of times a player can play on a Youth to Senior Permit.
Rule 4-10 – Intra-Club Permits▲Top
(1) Intra-Club Permits may be used to allow players to play on different League teams within their own club.
(1.1) Intra-Club Permits are strictly limited for use by League registered players only and does not apply to youth players in the same club.
(1.2) Players may play up on any higher division team within their club, or the equivalent level if permitting to or from Masters and U21 per Appendix C.
(2) Intra-Club Permits are allowed in League and League Cup matches.
(3) A maximum of five (5) permits may be used by a team in a single League match.
(4) A maximum of two (2) permits may be used by a team in a single League Cup match.
(4.1) The total number of permitted players allowed (Youth to Senior & Intra-Club combined) in a single game League Cup match is two (2).
(4.2) Any team adding players on Intra-Club Permits, or in combination with Youth to Senior Permits, may not exceed a game day roster limit of 14 players in a League Cup match.
(5) There is no limit to the number of times a player can play on an Intra-Club Permit.
Rule 4-11 – Masters Division Players▲Top
(1) This division is restricted to players who will be 30 years of age and older by December 31st of the current year.
(2) Teams applying to play in the Masters division must have at least 12 players who are 30 years of age or older.
(3) Teams applying to play in the Masters division are allowed to "grandfather" up to three (3) underage players when they first enter the Masters division but those players must be 27 or older by December 31st of the current year.
(4) Any new players joining a Masters team must turn 30 before December 31st of the current year.
(5) Any grandfathered players under the age of 30 will be eligible to play in all League and League Cup matches but must adhere to BC Soccer Rules and Regulations for eligibility in any Masters Provincial Cup matches.
Rule 4-12 – Under-21 (U21) Division Players▲Top
(1) This division is restricted to players who are under 21 years of age as of December 31st of the current year.
(2) Teams in this division are permitted to sign five overage players of which a maximum of two players may be over 25 by December 31st of the current year.
(3) The five overage players will be eligible to play in all League and League Cup matches but must adhere to BC Soccer rules and regulations for eligibility in U21 Provincial Cup games.
Section 5 – The Players’ Equipment
Rule 5-1 – Interpretations of FIFA Law 4 - Players’ Equipment▲Top
(1) Jerseys must be numbered; no duplicate numbers permitted.
(2) Players are not permitted to share a jersey in the same match.
(3) With the exception of goalkeepers, all players must wear matching jerseys, shorts and socks of matching colours as posted on their team page.
(4) Shin guards are mandatory for all players and are to be completely covered by socks at all times.
(5) In the event of a colour conflict, the Home Team is required to change to an alternate colour jersey.
(6) All jewellery shall be removed; taping of jewellery is not permitted with the exception of Medical Alert bracelets.
(6.1) The Referee shall have the final decision and may request that the individual stop playing and leave the field until the Referee is satisfied that the safety issue/concern has been addressed so that the player has made themselves safe to themselves and to others.
(7) Knee braces and or casts must be covered with a protective sleeve or cover to the satisfaction of the Referee for safety considerations.
Section 6 – Match Officials
Rule 6-1 – The Referee▲Top
(1) Referees and Assistant Referees are part of the same officiating crew.
(2) Referees are to be paid at the field in cash only prior to kickoff. Teams that fail to pay the Referees will be fined per Appendix B, will have the game registered as a forfeit loss, and face all associated forfeit fees.
(2.1) Referees will be paid per the Referee schedule of fees for all matches. Each team is required to pay for one-half of the match fees.
(2.2) If the match does not get played for any reason, do not pay the Referee.
(2.3) Both teams are required to submit a match report with details as to why the match was not played.
(3) Team rosters, player cards, and permits are to be presented to the Referee prior to kick-off.
(3.1) The match report should reflect that the team failed to show their cards.
(4) Any member of the team without their online card available must be noted by the team on the team roster. The player name must be on the team roster with a note identifying the type of ID provided to the Referee.
(4.1) Players arriving after the match has begun must show their ID card to the Referee upon arrival or prior to substitution of the player.
Rule 6-2 – Referee No Show/No Assistant Referees▲Top
(1) Teams are expected to make every effort to play the match including when kick-off may be delayed.
(2) Any person who does Referee the match is insured by the BC Soccer Association.
(3) Refereeing duties can be shared between the teams with a person from each team doing one half of the match.
(4) Players, team staff and team spectators are expected to cooperate with any replacement Referee so as not to cause any undue stress for the replacement Referee.
(5) Any team that refuses to play a match when there is a replacement/volunteer Referee is available will be deemed to have forfeited the game, will be charged the forfeit fine pursuant to Appendix B and may face additional sanctions that may include a team bond, fine and suspension(s). The points for the match will be awarded to the team willing and prepared to play.
Rule 6-3 – The Assistant Referees▲Top
(1) Volunteer Assistant Referees are only required to show that the ball is out of play. The centre Referee will be responsible for offside decisions and any other infractions that occur during the match.
(2) Both teams will respect the decision of the volunteer Assistant Referee. Any assault against a volunteer Assistant Referee will be considered an assault against a match official, and will be considered as such by the League.
Section 7 – The Duration of the Match
Rule 7-1 – The Duration of the Match▲Top
(1) All matches will consist of two 45-minute halves, unless circumstances prevent two full 45 minute halves from being played during the time the match is scheduled to be played.
(2) A minimum of sixty (60) minutes must be played for the match result to be considered an official result.
(3) Any team that refuses to play or compete in a match for any reason when, in the opinion of the Referee, there is no reason for the match not to be played or continue will be charged the forfeiture fine pursuant to Appendix B and may face additional sanctions that may include a team bond, fine and suspension(s).
Section 8 – The Start and Restart of Play
Rule 8-1 – The Start and Restart of Play▲Top
(1) All matches scheduled are expected to start on time. Should a field usage be delayed, teams are required to note the details in the match report.
Section 9 – The Method of Scoring
Rule 9-1 – Match Scores▲Top
(1) Match scores are reported by the match Referee.
Rule 9-2 – Match Reports▲Top
(1) In a continued effort to monitor and improve the quality of all of our match officials, field usage, and fair divisional management, all teams are required to complete and submit a Match Report following each match.
(2) Failure to file a minimum of five match reports in a season, teams may be subject to a fine per Appendix B.
Section 10 – Conduct
Rule 10-1 –Team Conduct▲Top
(1) The team coach is ultimately responsible for the conduct/behaviour of all players and team staff.
Rule 10-2 – Spectator Conduct▲Top
(1) The team coach is ultimately responsible for the conduct/behaviour of all team spectators and supporters.
(2) Spectators and supporters are not permitted on the bench, in the bench area or technical area. The Referee must be able to distinguish a clear and separate area for spectators from the team bench area and/or technical area.
Rule 10-3 – Diversity and Anti-Discrimination▲Top
(1) Discrimination of any kind on account of race, skin colour, ethnicity, national or social origin, gender, disability, language, religion, sexual orientation or any other reason will not be tolerated and may be subject to discipline. Discriminatory acts include but are not limited to offensive gestures or language, violations of the principles of fair play or behaviour that is unsporting in any other way.
Rule 10-4 – Discipline▲Top
(1) Once it has been determined by the League a violation has occurred, whether by a player, team official, spectator or supporter, the team may be subject to fine(s) as per Appendix B and additional sanctions.
(2) Any individual that receives a red card or is ejected from the game must leave the playing field and the field area to the satisfaction of the Referee.
(3) An automatic suspension for a minimum of one game, being the next scheduled League or League Cup match applies in the following scenarios:
(3.1) A player, coach or team official who receives a red card.
(3.2) A player who accumulates three yellow cards in the course of one season during League or League Cup play.
(3.3) A player who accumulates five yellow cards in the course of one season during League or League Cup play.
(3.4) A player who accumulates seven yellow cards in the course of one season during League or League Cup play.
(4) The League reserves the right to summon a team member, a team official, or a club official to a Discipline Committee hearing. Failure to attend by any team member, team official or club official may result in sanctions.
(5) Length of any suspension(s) will be determined by the Discipline Committee following a Discipline Committee hearing with the player, or team or club official.
(6) Any team official ejected from a match will be subject to a fine per Appendix B.
(7) Any team official reported to have received an official warning and noted in the Referee match report regarding a breach of conduct or behaviour may be subject to League fines, sanctions and those listed in the BC Soccer Judicial Code.
(8) In the event that it has been determined that an individual has violated Rule 10-3 Diversity and Anti-Discrimination, they may be subject to a minimum suspension of one game, being the next scheduled League or League Cup match.
(8.1) The League will investigate the matter, may hold a Discipline Committee hearing, require the player, team coach, or official to attend and may apply further sanctions.
(8.2) If the individual that has violated Rule 10-3 Diversity and Anti-Discrimination is a spectator or supporter, the coach/team official will be required to attend a Discipline Committee hearing on the matter and may be subject to sanctions that may include fine(s), suspension and a team bond.
(8.3) If the perpetrator is a match official, they will be required to attend a Discipline Committee hearing on the matter with the Head Referee in attendance and may be subject to sanctions including suspension.
Rule 10-5 – Termination of a Match▲Top
(1) Any team responsible for a match abandoned by the Referee due to a team-related issue, such as fighting, fan interference, non-compliance with a Referee’s request(s) or for any other reason, will be held accountable and forfeit the points for the match.
(2) All abandoned matches will be reviewed by the League and/or the Discipline Committee and sanctions may include a fine, suspension(s) and a team bond.
(3) Should the match be in disrepute by both teams, it may be forfeited by both teams or replayed.
Section 11 – Supplementary Rules
Rule 11-1 – Slide Tackling▲Top
(1) Slide tackling is not permitted in Divisions 4, 5 or in any Masters division.
Rule 11-2 – Team Ownership▲Top
(1) Team ownership is determined by 70% of the previous Winter season’s roster.
Rule 11-3 – Teams Leaving Clubs▲Top
(1) Any team leaving a club at any time during the season or the off-season must provide the League with written confirmation that the club has been notified by the team in advance of the intended move at the earliest opportunity.
(1.1) The notification of intent to move the team sent to the League must be signed by 70% of the previous Winter season’s roster.
(1.2) Any team leaving a club during the season will be subject to a fee per Appendix A.
(2) The bond is associated with the team and will be transferred with the team.
Rule 11-4 – League Schedules ▲Top
(1) All teams will play all League and League Cup games scheduled unless advised or notified by the League.
Rule 11-5 – Match Cancellations & Rescheduled Matches ▲Top
(1) The League requires the completion of the online form a minimum of ten (10) days prior to the scheduled game for consideration to reschedule a match.
(2) All teams are expected to play all rescheduled matches.
(3) If a match is postponed for any reason the League Scheduler will make every attempt to reschedule the match for the earliest possible date.
Rule 11-6 – Match Forfeits ▲Top
(1) If a request to reschedule a match is not approved by the League and the team that has made the request refuses to play the match, the team will forfeit the match and face fines per Appendix B.
(2) Forfeited matches are recorded as a 1-0 result and points awarded to the team that was prepared to play the scheduled match. If forfeit notice is less than 48 hours’ before the scheduled kickoff, the fine will be higher as per Appendix B.
(3) Teams that forfeit two matches in a season may face an additional team bond and/or be suspended for the remainder of the season and/or expelled from the League.
(4) All teams expelled from the League are required to apply in writing requesting readmission and will face an additional team bond per Appendix A.
Rule 11-7 – Risk Management▲Top
(1) All League members who perform the duties of coach, assistant coach or team manager must comply with the League's Risk Management requirements.
(2) All coaches, assistant coaches and team managers must ensure they have a valid Criminal Record Check on file with the League at the start of each season.
Section 12 – League Cup Play
Rule 12-1 – Scope of League Cup Play▲Top
(1) All teams in all Divisions will participate in League Cup play.
(2) League Cup Play format will consist of:
(2.1) Group Stage
(2.2) Knock-out Stages
(2.3) League Cup Finals & Consolation Cup
(3) A League Cup Draw will be held mid-October to determine Groups for League Cup play.
Rule 12-2 – League Cup Draw format▲Top
(1) Teams may be seeded in League Cup Groups and exempt from the random League Cup Draw.
(2) The number of seeded teams per division will be in direct relation to the number of League Cup Groups for that division.
(3) The League reserves the right to seed as many teams as necessary to ensure balance within the Groups.
(4) Seeding will be determined by League standings and/or points as of the Thanksgiving weekend break in the schedule.
(5) League tie breaker rules apply to separate teams in the event of a tie.
Rule 12-3 – League Cup Groups Format▲Top
(1) League Cup Group Standings will be determined using the League tie-breaker criteria, as outlined in Section 14.
(2) Integrated Group Stage play may commence in mid-October each season.
Rule 12-4 – Determining Results▲Top
(1) Group Stage matches tied at full time will end as a draw.
(2) Quarter-final, Semi-final and Final matches will go directly to Penalty Kicks if tied at full time.
Section 13 – Winter Season Promotion & Relegation
Rule 13-1 Promotion & Relegation Method▲Top
(1) Promotion and relegation will be based upon the previous season’s final divisional group standings.
(2) All teams in all divisions that finish first or with the most points in their respective divisional group can expect to be promoted at the start of each new season.
(3) Teams that finish in a promotion position at the end of each season will be promoted up one division.
(4) All teams in all divisions that finish last or with the least points in their respective divisional group can expect to be relegated at the start of each new season.
(5) Teams that finish in a relegation position at the end of each season will be relegated down one division.
(5.1) The number of teams promoted and relegated per division will be relative to the number of the groups in the division above and below with the exception of Selects B and Division 1.
(5.2) The League reserves the right to promote or relegate as many teams per divison as necessary to maintain competitive balance and in the interests of League’s divisional structural integrity.
(6) After team registration for the upcoming season closes, vacant spots in a higher division may be filled by promoting as many teams as necessary from the division or group directly below.
(6.1) Vacant spots may be pushed down to the lowest divisions in the interest of League’s divisional structural integrity.
(7) In the event teams are tied in total points, League tiebreaker criteria as defined in Section 14 will be used to determine which teams will be promoted and/or relegated.
(8) The League will not consider requests or appeals from promoted and/or relegated teams to remain in their previous/existing division.
Section 14 - League Tiebreakers
Rule 14-1 Tiebreaker Method▲Top
(1) In the event teams have the same number of points at the end of the season the following tiebreaker criteria will be utilized in the order as follows to separate teams:
- Winning Percentage
- Head to Head Play
- Goal Differential
- Goals For
- Goals For Per Game
- Goals Against
- Goals Against Per Game
(2) League tiebreakers will be used to separate teams tied in final standings of League play and League Cup competition.
(3) In the event that teams cannot be separated after all League tiebreaker criteria has been applied, a single match or series of matches if more than 2 teams are tied may be scheduled to separate tied teams.
(3.1) Teams involved are required to play any and all tie breaker games scheduled. Failure to do so will be considered a breach of Rule 11-6 Match Forfeits and teams will face all related fines including additional sanctions.
Section 15 – Protests
Rule 15-1 – Grounds for Protest▲Top
(1) A protest will only be considered on the grounds of misinterpretation of FIFA Laws of the Game, on the eligibility of players, or on breaches of League Rules & Regulations.
(2) If Rule 15-1 has not been breached, no protest will be considered if the objection lodged did not seriously affect the outcome of the match.
(3) In dealing with any protest, the League may take into consideration the possession by the protesting team of any prior knowledge, which, if properly used or disclosed, might have obviated the protest.
Rule 15-2 – Protest Method▲Top
(1) A formal protest of any League or League Cup match must be submitted within forty-eight (48) hours of the date of the match to which it relates.
(2) The protest shall be signed by the team coach or manager.
(3) The protest fee per Appendix A must accompany the protest when filed with the League.
(4) A copy of the protest shall be forwarded by the League to the opposing team within five (5) business days after the receipt of the protest. Upon receipt of the protest, the opposing teams shall have a maximum of forty-eight (48) hours to supply a response, failing which the League may render its decision based on the information available at the time.
(5) In the event that a protest is upheld by the League, the protest fee shall be refunded. In the event that the protest is unsuccessful the protest fee shall be retained by the League.
(6) The League will provide a written ruling to all parties affected by a decision which shall include the rationale for the decision and the League’s appeal procedures.
Appendix A – Schedule of Fees▲Top
| ||League Fees||Amount|
|1||Team Fee – Winter||$375|
|2||Team Fee – Spring (registered previous Winter season)||$175|
|3||Team Fee – Spring||$250|
|4||Late Team Registration Fee||$100|
|5||Team Leaving Club (mid-season)||$100|
|6||Player Fee – Winter||$50|
|7||Player Fee – Spring (registered previous Winter season)||$20|
|8||Player Fee – Spring||$30|
|9||New Team Performance Bond (100 % refundable upon exit in good standing)||$100|
|10||Discretional Performance Bond – a minimum of $100 of the bond is non-refundable.||Max. $1,500|
|12||Field Fee – Winter (for teams that require the League to provide field space; final actual costs will vary according to municipality & field type (turf vs grass))||TBD|
Appendix B – Schedule of Fines▲Top
Any violation of these Rules and Regulations, as listed, may result in the League levying a fine listed in Appendix B.
| ||League Fines||Amount|
|1||Member Non-Attendance - MWSL AGM and/or Special General Meetings||$100|
|2||Team folds midseason – coach/team/club responsible for payment of fine||$500|
|3||Forfeiting matches with more than 48 hours’ notice (Div. 1 – 5, U21, Masters)||$200|
|4||Forfeiting matches with more than 48 hours’ notice (Premier/Selects)||$300|
|5||Forfeiting matches with less than 48 hours’ notice (All divisions)||$400|
|6||Failure to comply with FIFA Law #4 - Player Equipment||$50|
|7||Failure to line field||$75|
|8||Failure to provide suitable corner flags||$75|
|9||Failure to provide suitable goal net (1)||$75|
|10||Failure to provide suitable match ball or spare match ball||$75|
|11||Any applicable permits not provided to the Referee prior to the match commencing||$50|
|12||Failure to file five game reports in a season||$100|
|13||Failure to provide player/team official ID cards and/or team roster to Referee at match time||$100|
|14||Failure to pay match official(s)||$200|
|15||Referee’s match report includes breach of conduct by team official Max.||$1,500|
|16||Any team official sent off from the field||$200|
|17||Any player that is ejected from a game or suspended due to an accumulation of yellow cards. (Per incident)||$20|
|18||Playing a suspended, illegal and/or ineligible or non-registered player(s)||$500|
|19||Breach of conduct by team official, player or spectator||Max. $1,500|
Appendix C – Intra-Club Permit Equivalencies▲Top
Equivalencies between open divisions and Masters divisions to be updated.