Important Information for Referees

League Rules: The rules of the league can be found on the NNESL website:   Please review them prior to the season.  The length of the halves, substitution procedures, referee pay, heading under U11 and several other issues and frequently asked questions are discussed below.

Game Length:                                                                               Referee Fees:

U-9/U10       (7v7) two 25 min. halves                Referee $30 (Offside will be enforced)

U-11/U-12    (9v9) two 30 min. halves               Referee $45 (Offside will be enforced)

U-13/14        (11v11) two 35 min. halves           Referee $45, AR $30, Single Referee $60    

U-15               (11v11) two 40 min. halves           Referee $65, AR $35, Single Referee $80

U16/U17      (11v11) two 45 min. halves           Referee $65, AR $35, Single Referee $80

U-18/U-19   (11v11) two 45 min. halves           Referee $65, AR $35, Single Referee $80


Substitutions shall be unlimited for all age groups in NNESL.   Substitutions may be made, with the consent of the referee, at any stoppage of play.

Heading Restrictions at U11 and under:

Per US soccer recommendations there will be no deliberate heading at U11 and below. When a player deliberately heads the ball in a game, an indirect free kick (IFK) should be awarded to the opposing team from the spot of the offense. If the deliberate header occurs within the goal area, the indirect free kick should be taken on the goal area line parallel to the goal line at the point nearest to where the infringement occurred. If a player does not deliberately head the ball, then play should continue.

Contacting the Assignor?

You should contact the assignor for any issues with an assigned game..  All issues, website problems, general questions, etc.  Should be directed to Ryan Faria at


Please remember to be at your games at least 30 minutes prior.  In the past, referees showed up less than 10 minutes prior to a game, then left before the end.  This is unacceptable behavior and will not be tolerated.  If you have conflicts and cannot be available for the entire game, please either decline the game, or let your assignor know something will prevent you from being there.  Any reports of referees showing up late and/or leaving games early, with will dealt with swiftly and may result in loss of assignments.

Rain Outs/Last Minute Cancelations:

If you arrive at a match and did not receive notification (*) of the game being canceled:

· DO NOT enter the scores into US Officials 

· The referee send an EMAIL with the subject line: GAME VARIATION to:


Upon receipt of the email, the game time will be changed to TBD and you will remain on the game so that you have the first opportunity to retain your assignment when the game is rescheduled.  If it is confirmed the game was canceled without notification, you will be paid for being at the field and ready to work.

(*)did not receive notification above means: You have looked at the NNESL website and not seen a cancelation in the WEATHER ALERTS section (  Failure to check the website or proper notification was sent or given to your email or telephone number on record will result in no payment.,

 If you are in the middle of a match and you must terminate or abandon the match and it is still in the first half

· The game is treated as if it has not been played and the league will decide what happens with the game. 

· Do not enter scores! 

· You will need to file a USSF Supplemental Form, which can be done by completing an incident form for the game on US Officials.

If the match has entered into the second half (you have blown the whistle and started your watch) the game is a complete game and you need to file the game report and an incident report with the details.  US Officials will send the report for only games with entered scores.  DO NOT ENTER SCORES UNLESS YOU HAVE STARTED THE 2nd HALF!

Rosters and Player Passes:

U8-U10, do not need to have player passes, they should give you a roster.

Ages U11-19 must give you a copy of the rosters and player passes to check.  U11-U19 must have player passes.  Please remember to check the name on the roster to the name on the pass and be sure each pass has a photo of the player.  This must be done for every game U11 and up! 

If a game is delayed due to the tardiness of a team, players, coach or manager, or missing player/coaches passes; a maximum of fifteen (15) minutes of “grace” time shall be awarded.   However, if the team has the minimum numbers of players needed to start the game, the game shall start.  After fifteen (15) minutes if the team is still unable to start the game, the game shall not be played and you need to file a referee report indicating what happened.  We as referees do not declare a game a forfeit, only the league may do that.  You just need to complete a referee report stating what happened.

Club Pass Rule Reminder:

There is a maximum of 5 guest players on a roster. It is NOT the referee's decision to allow more than that.  The league would like the referees to double check rosters to be sure that there are no more than five (5) guests players per team. Referees may not alter this rule.  If you have a team with more than five guest players, only five may play in the game and the coach needs to identify the to the referee prior to the game.  If you have any issues involving this or run into any problems, please note it in your game report and email the Assignor.  Remember, a maximum of 18 players only may participate in a given match, they may have more than 18 on the roster, but only 18 my play in that match.

Game Reports:

When entering scores, make sure to get it right.  ALL REFEREES on a match need to keep track of the scores of all matches they work so that when a discrepancy arises they can help straighten it out.  You should get together at halftime and after the game to verify that all of you have recorded the necessary and correct information.  While the Referee is the only one who must input the score, the entire crew will receive emails with a score is not entered.  If you were an AR a get an email like this, email the referee for the game and remind them.

Please be sure that if there was an event in the game needing a USSF Report, you are filling out the incident report, not simply put it in the note to the administrators.  Any event including a yellow card, red card, injury, weather delay, coach dismissal or other unusual event,  require you to fill out a report. To do this, complete an incident report when reporting the game score in US Officials. By completing this form, a USSF supplemental report is generated and sent directly to the SRA and all other necessary administrators.  A separate USSF supplemental report is not required for NNESL games since it's embedded in the US Officials match reporting process.

If a red card is given, or a coach is dismissed, you must immediately email the referee assignor, Ryan Faria @ with the information so that the league can manage the situation in a timely manner.  Do NOT keep the player/coach pass.


You have 48 hours to input your scores and any needed reports after your game.  Reporting your game is a requirement in order to be paid.  Your job is not complete until the scores and reports are submitted.

Accepting/Declining Games:

Please monitor your USOfficials account on a regular basis for new assignments.  You should receive an automated email when you receive new game assignments.  Please also make sure your availability is up to date at all times to avoid having to decline games. 

When do we get paid?

 Payroll will happen on a monthly basis and be full managed by USOfficials.  Please be sure you have followed the USOfficials process to set up your direct deposit and have your W-9 form on file.  This is required in order to be paid.

I was at the field and a referee didn’t show up so I took their place.  How do I get paid?

You will need to send an email to the assignor and tell them the date, time, location, game number and other referees you worked with.   The assignor will update the assignment in USOfficials (the database that is final record for referee payment) and once updated, report the game as usual.

Only two referees showed up and we were both to be ARs.  What should we do?

Decide who will be the referee.  That person will now be responsible for the game report.  Use one referee on the field, one AR on the touchline on the coaches’ side.  If you wish, you may use a club AR, if someone is willing to help, but it is up to you.  Remember a club AR should only assist with ball in or out of play calls.  DO NOT DO A “TWO MAN SYSTEM” UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES.  If you do a two-man system, your liability insurance with US Soccer is voided.  This cannot happen.

 I was the only referee at the game and I was supposed to be an AR.  What do I do?

IF you choose to be the referee, contact the assignor as soon as possible after the game so that they can put you on as the referee.  If you don’t feel comfortable being the referee, politely inform the coaches that you are not comfortable doing the game.  If you find that the coaches understands and urge you to try it anyway, you may do so.  If the coach tries pressures you or intimidate you, leave the field and contact the assignor as soon as possible!  Inform the assignor of the situation and why you chose not to do the game.  You can have your parent/guardian help you if necessary.  There will be consequences for the coach should this happen, but your assignor needs to know ASAP!

I got to the field and there was only one team, or there were no teams.  What do I do?

If there is a no show of one team, wait for 15 minutes.  After 15 minute, you may leave.  You will need to fill out a game report with NO SCORE and submit a USSF Supplemental report, within 48 hours (all online) detailing what happened.  Do not say it was a forfeit that is a league decision, not ours as referees.  You will be paid per the above information.  If neither team shows, contact the assignor as there was likely a miscommunication with the league scheduler and the assignor.  If the league did not notify the assignor, you will be paid.  If the assignor had made the necessary adjustments and you forgot or did not check your assignments for changes, you will not be paid.  There are many options in the system for you to receive notifications via email, text message and by logging into your account.  You must be aware of the changes.

Will there be playoffs?  How do I get those games?

Yes there will be playoffs and you will be assigned those games based upon your ability to perform your duties as a referee with respect to filing game reports on a timely basis, accepting or declining assignments on a timely basis, feedback from referee assessors and the assignors and following the Referee Code of Ethics.  Playoffs will be held November 11-12, 2017.

Dealing with Technical Area Staff:

There have been increasing reports that behavior of technical area staff (coaches, managers etc.) towards referees is unacceptable.  Please remember that you have a job to do as a referee.  If a coach or manager is acting in an irresponsible manner towards you, please utilize the US Soccer policy of “Ask, Tell, Dismiss” Any official that exhibits irresponsible conduct towards a referee, needs to be dealt via “Ask, Tell, Dismiss” and this must be reflected the game report as well.  DO NOT BE A HERO!  Bad behavior is bad behavior.  It may not bother YOU but think of the next referee, the players, the opposing coach and the spectators.  We are there to ensure Safety, Equality and Enjoyment.  The league and the State Referee Committee will back you on this 100%.  Any form of abuse or inappropriate behavior MUST BE REPORTED via a Referee Report.