New Game Sanction Rules come into effect – Better protection for visiting teams.

On 13th April, the IAFA Board approved new rules for the sanctioning of games and events. These new rules have introduced a new clearer and more streamlined process as well as affording better protection to both Irish and overseas teams involved in events.

“Hosting overseas teams is very important to us and our teams. We want all visitors to our shores to have a great experience.” explained Cillian Smith, IAFA Commissioner. “Unfortunately there have been a number of instances in recent years where third party run events have been deficient in basic safety and welfare requirements. We’ve also had both visiting teams, IAFA members and tourism suppliers left out of pocket. These unsavoury practices must be stopped if Ireland is to remain an attractive country for overseas events. Ireland should be promoted as a place where player safety and welfare is used to attract visiting teams and events.”

The new rules have been introduced following a comprehensive review of all events and applications made in recent years. One of the major findings of this review was that many events/games arranged by overseas agents were uninsured and many of the aforementioned agents were not bonded as required by Law for travel agents in Ireland.

Significant features of the new rules include the following:

–         As with the previous rules, all games must comply with the basic safety and welfare requirements that all Irish clubs currently adhere to.

–         All events must be appropriately insured.

–         Sports tours must be appropriately bonded/guaranteed – fully protecting the visiting teams payments.

–         Sanction fees for commercial games/events have been streamlined into 5 categories, depending on the size of the event. Fees, which start at only €2,000 for commercial/income generating events, will include legal and compliance costs.

–         Irish clubs hosting commercial events will be guaranteed payment of their costs.

–         The application deadlines have been changed to the following (i) 3 months for games involving IAFA and/or GFL International teams and (ii) 6 months for all other events.

The new application from can be obtained from the Commissioner and a copy will be posted on this site within the next 2-3 weeks.