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Scores Acceptable for Handicap Purposes
Principle of the Rule:  The scores a player submits for handicap purposes are at the core of the calculation of their Handicap Index. Rule 2 covers the conditions a score must satisfy for it to be acceptable for handicap purposes, providing confidence that it will produce reasonable evidence of the player’s ability and, ultimately, a Handicap Index that is reflective of demonstrated ability.
Scores Acceptable for Handicap Purposes

Acceptability of Scores

Scores Not Acceptable for Handicap Purposes
Some formats of play and scores played under certain restricted Terms of the Competition are not acceptable for handicap purposes and must not be posted to a player’s scoring record. The following illustrative list is not exhaustive and if a player is in doubt as to the acceptability of a score, it is recommended that they check with the golf club where they are playing or the Authorized Association.
Examples of When Player Has Been Disqualified From a Competition, But Gained No Significant Scoring Advantage
The Committee has the discretion to accept a score for handicap purposes if a player is disqualified from a competition, but no significant scoring advantage has been gained. Examples of situations where a Committee may consider that no significant scoring advantage has been gained include:
Examples of When Player Has Been Disqualified From a Competition for an Action That Would Have Provided a Significant Scoring Advantage
Examples of situations where a Committee may determine that a player has gained a significant scoring advantage include:
Hole Not Played By The Rules of Golf in General Play
Where a player has breached the Rules of Golf  in general play and knowingly failed to apply the correct penalty, the score should not be accepted for handicap purposes. However, in some circumstances, individual hole score(s) may be adjusted to a net double bogey  to produce an acceptable score. If the Handicap Committee determines that the player is using the net double bogey adjustment to gain an unfair scoring advantage, the Handicap Committee must take action under Rule 7 of the Rules of Handicapping.
Score is Acceptable for Handicap Purposes Even If Holes Have Not Been Played in the Order Set by the Committee
Rule 5.1 of the Rules of Golf  requires holes in a round to be played in the order set by either the Committee in charge of the competition or the Committee in charge of the golf course. However, a score is acceptable for handicap purposes even if the holes in a round have not been played in the order set by the Committee. For example:
  • When the golf course is busy and starting at an alternative hole will allow a quicker pace of play.
  • When playing holes in a different order will allow more players to complete their rounds, particularly during periods when daylight is limited.
Status of Scores Made When Match Play and Stroke Play Formats are Played Concurrently
When a player competes in a match while also playing a stroke play round and both are authorized formats of play, the stroke play score is the score that should be submitted for handicap purposes. The match play score should not be submitted.
Returning Scores for Handicap Purposes While Playing on Temporary Greens or Tees
The Authorized Association should determine whether scores made under temporary course conditions are acceptable for handicap purposes. The Authorized Association should also determine whether a temporary modification to the Course Rating and Slope Rating is required to reflect the temporary changes (see Appendix G).