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AAHL Guidelines, Rules & Bylaws

The AAHL currently follows hockey guidelines and rules created by USA Hockey as a baseline. However, we have rule changes specific to our league, as well as a code of conduct all players are required to abide by.

The AAHL League Rules & BYLAWS cover the broader operational aspects of the league as well as giving a full comprehensive list of all rules and regulations governing every aspect of the AAHL.  

All of these are freely available to be viewed by clicking on the AAHL Rules & Bylaws link on this page.

Zero-Tolerance Drugs & Alcohol Policy

Under no circumstances are illegal drugs and/or alcohol allowed to be brought into or consumed anywhere at or around any of the locations the AAHL plays at. Any player, team, or team spectator who is found to have brought or consumed alcohol and/or drugs in or around any of the rink facilities is subject to an immediate suspension, along with an immediate suspension for your captain, as well as a fine to be assessed to the captain of your team.  Furthermore, the player, team, or team spectators are also subject to arrest and prosecution at the facilities sole discretion. At facilities that sell alcohol; players, teams, and team spectators are allowed to purchase and consume alcohol only at those designated rinks in the designated areas only. Players are not allowed to leave those designated areas with alcohol in their possession.

This is a zero-tolerance policy.

Hearing by the Board
Violations of the Policy will be enforced following an evidentiary hearing by the AAHL Board.  Such a hearing will be initiated following the receipt of a complaint directed to the President of the League by the management of any particular rink where the AAHL has contracted for ice time. 

Hearing Timing and Procedure
The complaint will be heard by the Board for alleged violations at its next scheduled meeting. Any individual[s] identified to the Board as having violated the Policy will be entitled to, but not required to be heard at the next Board meeting. The President of the League is empowered to set the time, place, quorem requirements, rules governing voting, and all other procedural rules which shall govern the conduct of the Hearing.

Final Determination by the Board
Following review of the facts presented, the Board will vote to assess such sanctions or take such actions as appropriate to the particular circumstances under consideration.

Penalty Box

We recommend that every player read this notice.

We HIGHLY recommend that every player should avoid being a participant in any of the actions below.

The Rule prohibiting physical contact by any player with any official is not new, and has existed substantially without change since the inception of the League. Review of its application is useful both in cautioning new league members and in reminding league veterans of the consequence of violation of this prohibition.

Verbal abuse of officials or refusal to quickly leave the ice when directed to the penalty box, usually results in a misconduct penalty, followed by ejection for continued or aggravated misconduct. Players are reminded that only designated team members (captain or assistant) may discuss a call with the officials.

In no event may any player ever make any physical contact with a referee. To illustrate how absolute this rule is, touching a referee however slightly, even by a finger to the chest, will result in a Match Penalty and expulsion from the league. This is generally for a minimum of one year. The player forfeits all dues paid to that date, is prohibited from finishing the season in all divisions in which he or she plays, and gets no refund for unpaid games. The player must reapply for permission to rejoin the league after the expulsion period has passed. Re-admission is considered by the League Board, and is not automatic.

In a recent season year a referee in a game was punched by a player following a penalty assessment. The player was suspended until the next Board meeting about ten days later, at which time the Board decided on a lifetime suspension. While this is an extreme action, every year or two a player is subjected to such a penalty by the Board. No player ever given a lifetime suspension has been permitted to rejoin the league.

The physical space immediately surrounding a league official (including scorekeepers) is sacrosanct. Invasion of this protected area which results in any contact, however slight, is never excused. Players may expect that the league will act aggressively to protect officials from any intentional or reckless physical contact by any player, by eliminating violators from the League.

Note that penalties may be assessed against players for misconduct which occurs after the game, and even after both teams have left the ice.

Conduct Which Draws a Match Penalty
Safety of players and officials is paramount. The League thus requires protective gear, and will expel those who put others at risk of avoidable injury. A Match Penalty, reviewed by the full AAHL Board, is assessed for the following misconduct: (Extracted from Bylaws)

  1. Intent to Injure, evidenced by a clear intention and voluntary action.
  2. Physical Abuse of an Official during a game. [end of resurfacing prior to warmup, to beginning of resurfacing following handshake]
  • This would include ANY voluntary physical contact by a player with an Official (whether with a stick, a finger to the chest, or even a tap on the shoulder but would not include accidental contact, e.g. being pushed into the Official, or incidental contact in the course of play);
  • Intimidation which threatens the immediate use of physical contact.