Match Official Registration Requirements for 2020

February 18, 2020


Match Official Registration Requirements for 2020


February 18th, 2020

(WHITBY, ON) - Rugby Ontario is pleased to provide an update regarding match official registration and to clarify specific requirements for 2020. As Rugby Ontario continues to focus on creating a safe environment for rugby at all levels, we cannot understate the importance of ensuring those actively involved in officiating the sport meet the specified requirements of Rugby Ontario, Rugby Canada and the insurance providers. 

There are a number of benefits of being a Match Official member with a Provincial Union, one of which is exposure to the national insurance policy when participating in sanctioned events under Provincial Union jurisdiction. In conjunction with Rugby Canada, we have outlined below the minimum standards for Match Officials to register and participate in rugby governed by Rugby Ontario and Rugby Canada. 

Match Official Registration 

Please note that anyone officiating club rugby matches must meet the following criteria: 

- Be a registered and active member of a Provincial Union as a Match Official.

- Have up-to-date World Rugby certification and/or accreditation as a Match Official.

- Completed the World Rugby Laws of the Game certificate on an annual basis.

- Completed the World Rugby Concussion Management for the General Public certificate on an
annual basis.

- Completed the World Rugby Rugby Ready certificate on an annual basis.

In the event that anyone other than a Match Official that meets the above criteria acts as a referee, they would not be covered under the Rugby Canada insurance policy.
Rugby Ontario requires all Member Clubs to register two (2) Club Referees (per Rugby Ontario Operations Manual, Section 4.2.5). In the event that Rugby Ontario is unable to appoint a Match Official, the host club for the match will need to appoint a club referee who meets the above criteria.
To support Member Clubs with this requirement, Rugby Ontario has introduced the Club Referee registration category. This membership type is to be used exclusively for individuals within a club that have been designated to fill the Club Referee role. Rugby Ontario will waive the provincial dues associated with this category; however, applicable Rugby Canada and any other club dues will apply for all registrations in this category.

As the Rugby Canada membership fee is only charged once (at the highest dues level) per registrant, members can upgrade to add a Club Referee membership at a reduced cost. As an example, registered Senior players will be able to use the upgrade process to add Club Referee registration with no additional Rugby Canada or Rugby Ontario dues. 

It should be noted that Club Referees will: 

- not be appointed to matches by Rugby Ontario’s appointers; and,

- not be eligible to receive mileage reimbursement for matches.

As in previous seasons, any registered participant interested in being appointed to matches by Rugby Ontario’s appointers, and therefore eligible to receive mileage reimbursement for their travel, must register as a full Match Official and meet the criteria specified above. 

Rugby Ontario continues to strive towards ensuring that all matches in Ontario are appointed with registered Match Officials. Our hope is that the appointed Match Official pool across Ontario will continue to grow and develop, reducing the dependence on Club Referees. We will continue to work with the community towards this goal, while ensuring that all participants comply with national registration and insurance requirements. In concert with the Rugby Ontario Referee Committee and Branch Unions, Rugby Ontario has introduced a number of initiatives to promote referee recruitment and retention. These include more course offerings, increased game fees, increased Coach of Match Official fees and an early bird discount for course registration. 

To assist each Member Club in identifying potential Club Referees for 2020, we have identified a club- specific list of registered participants from 2019 that have previously completed a World Rugby Level 1 Match Official course between 2017 and 2019 and/or a World Rugby Level 2 Match Official course. This list will be provided to each Member Club shortly. 

The Rugby Ontario 2020 Match Official Course Calendar is now available on our website, click here to view the calendar 

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact David Bushell at


The Ontario Blues program is the high performance representative program for male and female rugby players in Ontario. Rugby Ontario is represented at the provincial level by the Ontario Blues. The program includes representative teams from Under-15 to Senior in both Women’s and Men’s Fifteens and Under-18 Men's and Women's Sevens. Specifically, the program is designed to develop and showcase rugby players for Canadian representative national teams.


Rugby Ontario is the provincial sports governing body responsible for the organization of rugby in Ontario. Our mission is to establish a stronger identity for rugby in Ontario by promoting the sport’s core values and by fostering a culture of inclusiveness and excellence on and off the field of play.

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Dalton Finkbeiner

 Communications and Marketing Coordinator - Rugby Ontario

    647-560-4790 x 1006