WMGA Handicap Policy

WMGA Handicap Policy

WMGA Handicap Policy


The purpose of the USGA Handicap SystemTM is to make the game of golf more enjoyable by enabling golfers of differing abilities to compete on an equitable basis. The System provides fair Course HandicapsTM for players regardless of ability, and adjusts a player’s Handicap IndexTM up or down as one’s game changes. At the same time, it disregards high scores that bear little relation to the player’s potential ability and promotes continuity by making handicaps continuous from one playing season or year to the next. A USGA Handicap Index is useful for all forms of play. A basic premise underlies the USGA Handicap System, namely that every player will try to make the best score at each hole in every round, regardless of where the round is played, and that the player will post every acceptable round for peer review.

An essential element of the USGA Handicap System is the requirement that each golf club or golf association that issues USGA Handicap Indexes shall appoint a Handicap Committee to ensure the integrity of the handicaps it issues. This Committee shall make certain that the members comply with the USGA Handicap System, and should issue a clear policy concerning the posting, peer auditing and adjusting of handicaps.

A player must earn a USGA Handicap Index. No player has an inherent right to a USGA Handicap Index without providing full evidence of his ability to the Handicap Committee at his golf club. A USGA Handicap Index shall normally be changed only as warranted by the USGA Handicap System.


Each player is responsible for assuring that the scores for all rounds are correct and posted in accordance with USGA Policy regarding equitable stroke control and how to post for incomplete rounds. The scores can be posted at the computer in the golf shop, from an external computer over the Internet, or from an away club that has appropriate equipment

It is the player’s responsibility to read and understand USGA policy for posting scores and to post scores within one week from the play date. Information regarding USGA policy can be found at their website in the section labeled handicapping. An alternate site is


The USGA defines"Peer review"as the ability of golfers to gain an understanding of a player's potential ability and to form a reasonable basis for supporting or disputing a score that has been posted.

There are two essential elements of peer review:

1. Members of a golf club must have a reasonable and regular opportunity to play together.

2. Access must be provided to scoring records, as well as to a Handicap Index list, for inspection by others, including, but not limited to, fellow club members.

Any member of the Woodmont Men’s Golf Association may bring written concerns to the Handicap Committee if upon their “peer review” they have issues with score (s) posted by a member of our association. These situations will remain confidential until the Handicap Committee has time to investigate and respond to both members.

The Handicap Committee will randomly audit player’s scores, using the tee time sheets and scorecards. It is the intent of the committee to assure that each member is audited at least three times per year. If problems are found, the pace of audit may increase. The result of the audit will determine whether the committee takes action in accordance with the following paragraphs.


A USGA Handicap Index shall be adjusted up or down if the player does not turn in all acceptable scores or otherwise does not observe the spirit of the USGA Handicap System, or the policy of the Woodmont Men’s Golf Association. The Handicap Committee shall determine the amount of adjustment. If a player fails to post an acceptable score within one week after completion of the round, the Handicap Committee will post a score and/or a penalty score.

  1. For the first offense, the member will be given a written warning and requested to post a score. He will be given one week to post a score.If the score is not posted within the week, a penalty score equal to the lowest handicap differential (score, course rating and slope) from the player’s 20 most recent rounds will be posted by the Handicap Committee.
  2. For a second offense, a penalty score equal to the lowest handicap differential (score, course rating and slope) from the player’s 20 most recent rounds will be posted by the Handicap Committee.
  3. For the third offense the member will be given a written warning and an opportunity to appear before the handicap committee to explain extenuating circumstances. If the member fails to give justification, the Handicap Committee will modify (M) their handicap based on past performance.
  4. For the fourth offense the Handicap Committee will withdraw the member’s handicap. The member will be given written notification and an opportunity to appear before the WMGA Board of Directors to explain extenuating circumstances.

If a player manipulates his scores to influence his USGA Handicap Index, the Handicap Committee and / or WMGA Board of Directorsshall modify or withdraw his USGA Handicap Index, depending on the severity of the offense. Examples of manipulating scores include the following:

  1. Posting erroneous scoresor not posting scores;
  1. Stopping play after 7 holes to avoid posting scores;
  1. Repeatedly playing more than one ball to avoid posting scores;
  1. Not adjusting hole scores under Section 4 of the USGA Handicap Manual (Equitable stroke control);
  1. Deliberately reporting more or fewer strokes than actually scored; and
  1. Deliberately taking extra strokes to inflate a score.

The Handicap Committee shall review the reduction of a player’s USGA Handicap Index for exceptional tournament scores. The procedure in Section 10-3 of the USGA Handicap Manual is to be used for the reduction of a Handicap Index when a player scores much better in competitions than in informal games. To use the procedure, a player must have two or more eligible tournament scores and a minimum of two tournament score differentials that are at least three strokes better than the player’s current USGA Handicap Index. The procedure for reducing a player’s USGA Handicap Index is explained in Section 10-3 of the USGA manual. If a player’s USGA Handicap Index has been reduced for exceptional tournament scores under Section 10-3, this reduction is re-evaluated at each revision. The Handicap Committee may further reduce or override the reduction of the Handicap Index of a player who’s USGA Handicap Index has been reduced under Section 10-3 if there are extenuating circumstances.

The Handicap Committee may decide to provide an increased handicap for a temporary disability. The increased handicap is not a USGA Handicap Index, and the letter “L” to indicate that it is for local use must identify it. For example, a player having had recent surgery may be given a higher handicap while recovering. A minimum of 5 rounds must be played, under current health condition, before review will take place.

The Handicap Committee and Tournament Committee have the right, under USGA guidance, to review player’s handicaps for rapid improvementthat can not be measured by the current USGA handicap system. For example, a player has a 16.5 index; recent play in tournaments and regular play is a 12.5; system would lower to a 14.5 which is not reflective of their 12.5 potential to play. The committees will decide if the 12.5 is appropriate index to apply for the event.

The Handicap Committee