What’s contained in the launched LIV Golf guidelines, rules and participant contracts



No playing. No doping. Solely average alcohol consumption at post-tournament events.

The brand new LIV Golf circuit would possibly appear like plenty of enjoyable (and cash), however the Greg Norman-fronted tour additionally has loads of guidelines and rules.

The principles and rules had been among the many unsealed paperwork that had been launched by a federal courtroom in California on Monday. On Sept. 1, U.S. District Decide Beth Labson Freeman partially granted the PGA Tour’s movement to unseal sure parts of LIV Golf’s guidelines and rules and its contracts with gamers. She dominated that LIV Golf might hold the monetary phrases and different private info confidential, however ordered the plaintiffs to submit publicly redacted paperwork.

Listed below are a number of the highlights:

Golfers who play properly can lengthen their contracts

Talor Gooch‘s contract that was submitted to the courtroom was closely redacted. Gooch was considered one of three LIV golfers who unsuccessfully tried to acquire a brief restraining order from Freeman to compete within the PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup playoffs. Monetary phrases and different private info was blacked out within the publicly launched model. Gooch signed a two-year contract with LIV Golf for the 2022 and 2023 seasons. A supply instructed ESPN on Tuesday that the longest contract between a participant and LIV Golf is thru the 2027 season.

The contract specifies that Gooch is an unbiased contractor “and that nothing on this Settlement could also be construed or relied upon as proof that the League Operator or the Crew Operator, because the case could also be, is an employer, joint-employer, and/or co-employer of the Participant.”

The contract stipulates that Gooch isn’t topic to relegation till the tip of the 2025 season, and that he can determine to increase the contract by ending at a sure place within the particular person factors standings. The particular particulars of the place he needed to end within the standings had been redacted within the contract launched by the courtroom.

Mentions of an anti-doping coverage

In accordance with the principles and rules, gamers are prohibited from associating or having “dealings with Individuals whose actions have concerned trafficking or administration of gear or strategies prohibited by the World Anti-Doping Company, or different types of doping.”

There are additionally references to LIV Golf’s performance-enhancing medication coverage and substance abuse coverage all through the principles and rules. The principles state there are separate dispute decision procedures for such violations. Gamers are banned from consuming alcohol and banned substances throughout on-course actions, and “average and accountable consumption of alcohol” after competitors and through social capabilities is permitted.

A LIV Golf supply instructed ESPN on Tuesday that the brand new league hasn’t but instituted a drug coverage and is not testing gamers for banned substances and leisure medication. The supply stated the circuit hoped to have such a program by the 2023 season and totally intends to drug check its gamers.

The PGA Tour Gamers Handbook and Regulation says that “all contestants in PGA TOUR occasions are topic to the phrases and circumstances of the PGA TOUR Anti-Doping Program.”

LIV golfers could be fined as much as $50,000

There is a sturdy disciplinary plan for LIV golfers, in response to the principles and rules. Following an investigation of alleged wrongdoing, which could embody on-course etiquette, playing, drug use or being convicted of a criminal offense, a participant will obtain an interim written discover that may embody an outline of the violation, supporting proof and potential sanctions. The participant may have 10 days to submit a written rationalization and mitigating elements.

LIV Golf will then challenge a written closing discover. The participant can enchantment a ruling by way of a streamlined enchantment course of for minor violations and a typical enchantment course of for extra severe ones. LIV Golf has the authority to quickly droop a participant throughout his enchantment.

Sanctions can embody a reprimand or censure, which can be revealed within the gamers’ e-newsletter, fines between $1,000 and $50,000, suspension from tournaments, expulsion for 2 years, and everlasting expulsion with no proper of reinstatement.

The PGA Tour has three courses of penalties: minor (tremendous lower than $10,000), intermediate (tremendous between $10,001 and $20,000 and suspension of not more than three tournaments) and main (tremendous in extra of $20,000 and suspension of greater than three tournaments and/or everlasting disbarment from Tour).

LIV Golf owns gamers’ on-course media rights

The principles and rules state that “tv, radio, movie, web, statistical information and knowledge, and different related rights, in addition to all different media rights, of all Gamers taking part in occasions forming a part of the Sequence or another golf occasion run together with, or the beneath the auspices of, LIV Golf, are, in reference to all content material that’s created, captured, recorded or in any other case generated throughout or together with any such occasions, hereby granted and assigned to LIV Golf.”

Whereas gamers’ media rights surrounding tournaments are “the property of and expressly reserved by and to LIV Golf,” the rules do not “prohibit in any approach a Participant’s proper to promote, switch, or maintain, or exploit his particular person media rights and, accordingly, the worth of his title, picture, and likeness.”

Gooch’s contract notes that he “additional agrees that the League Operator has the unique and unrestricted proper in perpetuity (together with after termination of this Settlement)” to make use of his title, picture and likeness.

A LIV Golf supply stated something a participant does in or round a event belongs to the circuit in perpetuity. As soon as the participant leaves the occasion or performs in one other occasion on a distinct tour, nonetheless, there aren’t any restrictions from LIV Golf. He controls and owns his media rights in every thing else he does.

Six-time main champion Phil Mickelson, who was among the many first gamers to defect to LIV Golf, stated the PGA Tour’s “obnoxious greed” concerning gamers’ media rights was one of many causes he was seeking to play elsewhere.

“It is not public data, all that goes on,” Mickelson instructed Golf Digest in February. “However the gamers haven’t got entry to their very own media. If the tour wished to finish any menace [from Saudi or anywhere else], they may simply hand again the media rights to the gamers. However they might fairly throw $25 million right here and $40 million there than give again the roughly $20 billion in digital belongings they management. Or hand over entry to the $50-plus-million they make yearly on their very own media channel.

“There are numerous points, however that is likely one of the largest,” he continued. “For me personally, it is not sufficient that they’re sitting on a whole lot of thousands and thousands of digital moments. Additionally they have entry to my pictures, entry I do not need. Additionally they cost firms to make use of pictures I’ve hit. And after I did ‘The Match’ — there have been 5 of them — the tour pressured me to pay them $1 million every time. For my very own media rights. That kind of greed is, to me, past obnoxious.” Whereas LIV gamers have extra freedom to compete in different circuits, LIV Golf nonetheless controls the pictures Mickelson was referring to in its tournaments.

Injured gamers nonetheless receives a commission

If a participant withdraws from a LIV Golf event after hitting no less than one shot, he’ll obtain 50% of the prize cash awarded to the last-place finisher ($60,000) however is not going to obtain particular person factors. If a participant pulls out after the primary spherical, he’ll obtain the total quantity for the last-place finisher ($60,000) however no factors. The participant’s staff would proceed competing as a three-man squad.

Disqualified gamers can nonetheless take part in staff competitions

A participant who’s disqualified from a person competitors for, say, utilizing an unlawful membership, having too many golf equipment in his bag or signing an incorrect scorecard, “might proceed to compete within the Crew competitors for any rounds subsequent to the spherical wherein the disqualification occurred.” The participant’s rating for the spherical wherein the disqualification occurred can’t be counted in a staff’s rating.

There isn’t any playing on the LIV Golf circuit

LIV Golf’s guidelines and rules strictly prohibit playing and full compliance with code of conduct and anti-corruption provisions. The principles state that every taking part participant agrees to “not gamble (whether or not instantly or not directly) in reference to any Event, occasion or another golf match or competitors and shall not manipulate or unlawfully affect any outcomes or statistics.”

Gamers are additionally prohibited from offering “any nonpublic info to any Individual for playing or wagering functions.” Gamers caught doing so will face speedy self-discipline, together with everlasting expulsion from LIV Golf occasions.

The principles and rules state {that a} participant “shall not have any monetary curiosity, both instantly or not directly, within the efficiency or the winnings of one other Participant in any Event authorized or in any other case sanctioned by LIV Golf and/or the Asian Tour or another regulatory physique, whether or not by way of purse splitting, Prize cash “insurance coverage,” monetary help, bets or in any other case.” Gamers are required “to offer his or her greatest efforts in competitors” and might’t “bribe, reward, pay, reward or in any other case give something of worth to any Participant with the intention of influencing his or her efforts in a golf event or comparable occasion.”

Below the principles, LIV gamers are obligated to report back to Norman “any recognized or suspected bribe, reward, cost, reward or different supply for something of worth, or any settlement or acceptance or guess.”

Retired LIV golfers nonetheless need to work

In accordance with Gooch’s contract, if a LIV golfer retires earlier than his contract expires, he should “proceed to adjust to any cheap non-playing requests from the League Operator or Crew Operator regarding the League or Crew, as relevant, together with duties regarding staff captaincy, promotion of the league, success of media obligations and attendance at Occasions (together with with respect to carrying and displaying Crew Attire.”

LIV Golf desires to develop the sport

The final merchandise within the guidelines and rules, rule 9.14, states, “All gamers are permitted to take part on as broad and various a cross-section of world golf occasions as attainable, as long as such participation doesn’t intrude with the Gamers’ obligations to LIV Golf.” Like on the PGA Tour, LIV golfers aren’t permitted to play on different tournaments in the event that they battle with LIV Golf occasions. They do not need to get hold of conflicting-event releases from Norman, like PGA Tour gamers do to play in different non-PGA Tour tournaments.

“The League views participation of the Gamers in Different Occasions as a significant profit to the promotion of the sport of golf worldwide,” the principles and rules says.

The opposite occasions embody the Masters, U.S. Open, The Open, PGA Championship, Ryder Cup, Presidents Cup, DP World Tour occasions and PGA Tour occasions.

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