PROCEDURES FOR REVIEW AND HEARINGS ON THE RULES OF TENNIS
1.1 These procedures were approved by the Board of Directors of the
International Tennis Federation ("Board of Directors") on 17 May 1998.
1.2 The Board of Directors may from time to time supplement, amend,
or vary these procedures.
2.1 The International Tennis Federation is the custodian of the Rules of
Tennis and is committed to:
a. Preserving the traditional character and integrity of the game of
b. Actively preserving the skills traditionally required to play the
c. Encouraging improvements, which maintain the challenge of the
d. Ensuring fair competition.
2.2 To ensure fair, consistent and expeditious review and hearings in
relation to the Rules of Tennis the procedures set out below shall apply.
3.1 These Procedures shall apply to Rulings under:
a. Rule 1 - The Court.
b. Rule 3 - The Ball.
c. Rule 4 - The Racket.
d. Appendix I and II of the Rules of Tennis.
e. Any other Rules of Tennis which the International Tennis Federation
4.1 Under these procedures Rulings shall be issued by a Ruling Board.
4.2 Such Rulings shall be final save, for an entitlement to appeal to an
Appeal Tribunal pursuant to these procedures.
5.1 Rulings shall be taken either:
a. Following a motion of the Board of Directors; or
b. Upon the receipt of an application in accordance with the procedures
set out below.
6. APPOINTMENT AND COMPOSITION OF RULING BOARDS
6.1 Ruling Boards shall be appointed by the President of the International
Tennis Federation ("President") or his designee and shall comprise of
such a number, as the President or his designee shall determine.
6.2 If more than one person is appointed to the Ruling Board the Ruling
Board shall nominate one person from amongst themselves to act as
6.3 The Chairperson shall be entitled to regulate the procedures prior to
and at any review and/or hearing of a Ruling Board.
7. PROPOSED RULINGS BY THE RULING BOARD
7.1 The details of any proposed Ruling issued upon the motion of the
Board of Directors may be provided to any bona fide person or any players,
equipment manufacturer or national association or members thereof with an
interest in the proposed Ruling.
7.2 Any person so notified shall be given a reasonable period within
which to forward comments, objections, or requests for information to the
President or his designee in connection with the proposed Ruling.
8. APPLICATION FOR RULINGS
8.1 An application for a Ruling may be made by any party with a bona
fide interest in the Ruling including any player, equipment manufacturer or
national association or member thereof.
8.2 Any application for a Ruling must be submitted in writing to the
8.3 To be valid an application for a Ruling must include the following
a. The full name and address of the Applicant.
b. The date of the application.
c. A statement clearly identifying the interest of the Applicant in the
question upon which a Ruling is requested.
d. All relevant documentary evidence upon which the Applicant intends
to rely at any hearing.
e. If, in the opinion of the Applicant, expert evidence is necessary
he shall include a request for such expert evidence to be heard.
Such request must identify the name of any expert proposed
and their relevant expertise.
f. When an application for a Ruling on a racket or other piece of
equipment is made, a prototype or, exact, copy of the equipment
in question must be submitted with the application for a Ruling.
g. If, in the opinion of the Applicant, there are extraordinary or
unusual circumstances, which require a Ruling to be made
within a specified time or before a specified date he shall include
a statement describing the extraordinary or unusual
8.4 If an application for a Ruling does not contain the information and/or
equipment referred to at Clause 8.3 (a)-(g) above the President or his
designee shall notify the Applicant giving the Applicant a specified reasonable
time within which to remedy the defect. If the Applicant fails to remedy the
defect within the specified time the application shall be dismissed.
9. CONVENING THE RULING BOARD
9.1 On receipt of a valid application or on the motion of the Board of Directors
the President or his designee may convene a Ruling Board to deal with
the application or motion.
9.2 The Ruling Board need not hold a hearing to deal with an application
or motion where the application or motion, in the opinion of the Chairperson
can be resolved in a fair manner without a hearing.
10. PROCEDURE OF THE RULING BOARD
10.1 The Chairperson of a Ruling Board shall determine the appropriate
form, procedure and date of any review and/or hearing.
10.2 The Chairperson shall provide written notice of those matters set
out at 10.1 above to any Applicant or any person or association who has
expressed an interest in the proposed Ruling.
10.3 The Chairperson shall determine all matters relating to evidence and
shall not be bound by judicial rules governing procedure and admissibility of
evidence provided that the review and/or hearing is conducted in a fair manner
with a reasonable opportunity for the relevant parties to present their case.
10.4 Under these procedures any review and/or hearings:
a. Shall take place in private.
b. May be adjourned and/or postponed by the Ruling Board.
10.5 The Chairperson shall have the discretion to co-opt from time to time
additional members onto the Ruling Board with special skill or experience to
deal with specific issues, which require such special skill or experience.
10.6 The Ruling Board shall take its decision by a simple majority. No
member of the Ruling Board may abstain.
10.7 The Chairperson shall have the complete discretion to make such
order against the Applicant [and/or other individuals or organisations commenting
objecting or requesting information at any review and/or hearing]
in relation to the costs of the application and/or the reasonable expenses
incurred by the Ruling Board in holding tests or obtaining reports relating
to equipment subject to a Ruling as he shall deem appropriate.
11.1 Once a Ruling Board has reached a decision it shall provide written
notice to the Applicant, or, any person or association who has expressed an
interest in the proposed Ruling as soon as reasonably practicable.
11.2 Such written notice shall include a summary of the reasoning behind
the decision of the Ruling Board.
11.3 Upon notification to the Applicant or upon such other date specified
by the Ruling Board the Ruling of the Ruling Board shall be immediately
binding under the Rules of Tennis.
12. APPLICATION OF CURRENT RULES OF TENNIS
12.1 Subject to the power of the Ruling Board to issue interim Rulings
the current Rules of Tennis shall continue to apply until any review and/or
hearing of the Ruling Board is concluded and a Ruling issued by the Ruling
12.2 Prior to and during any review and/or hearing the Chairperson of the
Ruling Board may issue such directions as are deemed reasonably necessary
in the implementation of the Rules of Tennis and of these procedures including
the issue of interim Rulings.
12.3 Such interim Rulings may include restraining orders on the use of
any equipment under the Rules of Tennis pending a Ruling by the Ruling
Board as to whether or not the equipment meets the specification of the
Rules of Tennis.
13. APPOINTMENT AND COMPOSITION OF APPEAL TRIBUNALS
13.1 Appeal Tribunals shall be appointed by the President or his designee
from [members of the Board of Directors/Technical Commission].
13.2 No member of the Ruling Board who made the original Ruling shall
be a member of the Appeal Tribunal.
13.3 The Appeal Tribunal shall comprise of such number as the President
or his designee shall determine but shall be no less than three.
13.4 The Appeal Tribunal shall nominate one person from amongst themselves
to act as Chairperson.
13.5 The Chairperson shall be entitled to regulate the procedures prior to
and at any appeal hearing.
14. APPLICATION TO APPEAL
14.1 An Applicant [or a person or association who has expressed an interest
and forwarded any comments, objections, or requests to a proposed
Ruling] may appeal any Ruling of the Ruling Board.
14.2 To be valid an application for an appeal must be:
a. Made in writing to the Chairperson of the Ruling Board who
made the Ruling appealed not later than  days following notification of
b. Must set out details of the Ruling appealed against; and
c. Must contain the full grounds of the appeal.
14.3 Upon receipt of a valid application to appeal the Chairperson of
the Ruling Board making the original Ruling may require a reasonable appeal
fee to be paid by the Appellant as a condition of appeal. Such appeal
fee shall be repaid to the Appellant if the appeal is successful.
15. CONVENING THE APPEAL TRIBUNAL
15.1 The President or his designee shall convene the Appeal Tribunal
following payment by the Appellant of any appeal fee.
16. PROCEDURES OF APPEAL TRIBUNAL
16.1 The Appeal Tribunal and their Chairperson shall conduct procedures
and hearings in accordance with those matters set out in sections 10, 11 and
16.2 Upon notification to the Appellant or upon such other date specified
by the Appeal Tribunal the Ruling of the Appeal Tribunal shall be immediately
binding and final under the Rules of Tennis.
17.1 If a Ruling Board consists of only one member that single member
shall be responsible for regulating the hearing as Chairperson and shall
determine the procedures to be followed prior to and during any review
17.2 All review and/or hearings shall be conducted in English. In any
hearing where an Applicant, and/or other individuals or organisations
commenting, objecting or requesting information do not speak English an
interpreter must be present. Wherever practicable the interpreter shall be
17.3 The Ruling Board or Appeal Tribunal may publish extracts from its
17.4 All notifications to be made pursuant to these procedures shall be in
17.5 Any notifications made pursuant to these procedures shall be
deemed notified upon the date that they were communicated, sent or transmitted
to the Applicant or other relevant party.
17.6 A Ruling Board shall have the discretion to dismiss an application if
in its reasonable opinion the application is substantially similar to an application or motion upon which a Ruling Board has made a decision and/or Ruling within the 36 months prior to the date of the application.