a) Only registered members of Cool Mule Poker may play in events sanctioned by Cool Mule Poker. Players may become a member of Cool Mule Poker by registering before any event where they will be given a Player Card and a Player ID number.
b) All players must show their Player Card and valid photo identification when asked to do so by any Cool Mule Poker representative in order to play in the event and earn points or prizes.
c) There is no pre-registration available for events. Players are only able to register on a ‘first-come-first-serve’ basis. If there are limited seats at a venue, and once the available seats have been filled, players may be seated with a reduced stack if a player busts out of the event at the tournament directors discretion.
d) Players must be 19 years of age to participate in any Cool Mule Poker events where prizes are awarded.
a) All participants and spectators at any Cool Mule Poker sanctioned event where alcohol is available are prohibited from placing any form of monetary currency on a session table at any time for any reason. There will be no exceptions to this rule. Violators will be asked to leave immediately and will be disqualified from the tournament.
b) The chips used in Cool Mule Poker Tournaments have absolutely no cash value of any kind.
c) Absolutely NO CASH GAMBLING is permitted at any Cool Mule Poker sanctioned event where alcohol is available. No side bets, no cash bets, no proposition bets etc. There will be no exceptions to this rule. Violators will be asked to leave immediately and will be disqualified from the tournament.
3. Tournament Direction
a) The Tournament Director will consider the best interest of the game and fairness as the top priorities in the decision-making process. Unusual circumstances can, on occasion, dictate that decisions in the interest of fairness take priority over technical rules.
b) Players who enter an event are bound to abide by both the Tournament Rules and generally accepted standard poker etiquette as administered by the Tournament Director. Violators may be warned, suspended from play for a specified length of time, or disqualified from the tournament.
c) All rulings from the Tournament Director are final. The Tournament Director retains the right to alter any event in a manner fair to the players if required due to time constraints or other reasons.
d) Players who act in a disruptive manner or appear intoxicated may be excluded from play or disqualified from any event subject to the Tournament Director, venue staff or venue management’s discretion. Major incidents of abuse may be reported to the appropriate authorities.
e) Players may use mobile phones while at the table as long as such use does not hold up the game due to lack of attention to the action. The Tournament Director will assess penalties to a player who is disturbing other players or holding up the game due to the use of a mobile phone and may ban the player from using the device at their discretion.
f) Players may use audio devices only if they do not disturb any other players and the player does not hold up the game due to lack of hearing the action. The Tournament Director will assess penalties to a player who is disturbing other players or holding up the game due to the use of an audio device and may ban the player from using the device at their discretion.
g) If a player has a complaint about a Tournament Director, that complaint should be forwarded to Cool Mule poker via email. All complaints will be kept in strict confidence by Cool Mule Poker and if it is deemed necessary, the issue will be addressed.
a) Once registered, a player must draw for their seat. Seats are assigned through the random draw of cards with the seating assignments marked on them. A player must draw one card and must take the seat as assigned. The player who draws seat number 1 at each table will be the first dealer (on the button). Seat 2 is immediately to the left of the dealer and so on.
b) Players will be distributed evenly between all the tables. The appropriate starting amount of chips will be placed on the table for each participant at the beginning of the event.
c) Players should take their seats and be ready to play 2 minutes before the tournament start time.
a) All regular Cool Mule Poker events are self dealt. If you do not know how to deal properly, ask. We will show you how to shuffle and deal. Season Finales and other events may have dealers available.
b) A shuffle consists of riffle, riffle, riffle, box cut, riffle and then cut. The player shuffling should offer the player behind the button (to the right) the deck for the final cut. A cut card is to be used to conceal the bottom of the deck.
c) A new hand begins once the first riffle is completed (not by posting of blinds).
d) Players will rotate dealer responsibilities in a clockwise rotation.
e) The dealer position is indicated by a disc (button) marked as such and is always placed in front of the dealer to determine the betting order. This position is known as the button.
f) After the completion of a hand, the current dealer will collect all the cards and pass them to the next dealer along with the button and cut card.
g) During the deal, if the first or second card off the deck is exposed, this is a misdeal. The dealer will collect all the cards, re-shuffle, cut the deck and re-deal.
h) During the deal, if more than one card is exposed, this is a misdeal. The dealer will collect all the cards, re-shuffle, cut the deck and re-deal.
i) During the deal, if the dealer mistakenly deals the first player an extra card after all players have received their starting hands, the card will be returned to the deck and used for the first burn card. If this card is seen by the first player, it is shown to all other players and still becomes the first burn card. If the dealer mistakenly deals more than one extra card, this is a misdeal. The dealer will collect all the cards, re-shuffle, cut the deck and re-deal.
j) During the deal, if any single card is exposed beyond the first or second card off the deck, the dealer continues to deal all the hole cards. The dealer then deals one more card to the player who had their card exposed and the player returns the exposed card to the dealer. The exposed card is shown to all players and becomes the first burn card.
k) If during play, the dealer prematurely deals the flop (first 3 community cards) before the betting is complete, or if the flop contains too many cards, the dealer collects the flopped cards and incorporates them into the deck. The deck is re-shuffled and cut. The burn card remains on the table and once the action is complete, the dealer deals a new flop without burning a card.
l) If during play, the dealer prematurely deals the turn card (the fourth community card) before the betting is complete, the card is taken out of play and the betting is completed. The dealer then incorporates the incorrect turn card into the deck. The deck is re-shuffled and cut. The burn card remains on the table and the dealer deals a new turn card without burning a card.
m) If during play, the dealer prematurely deals the river card (the fifth community card) before the betting is complete, the card is taken out of play and the betting is completed. The dealer then incorporates the incorrect river card into the deck. The deck is re-shuffled and cut. The burn card remains on the table and the dealer deals a new river card without burning a card.
n) An absent player is always dealt a hand, and their blinds must be posted by the dealer. Once the last card is dealt, the hand of an absent player is dead and must be folded by the dealer.
o) If during play at least 2 players have acted and a player discovers their hand has too many cards, their hand is considered dead and must be folded and they loose all chips placed in the pot.
a) Players must post their blinds before the cards are dealt as required by the rules depending on their position relative to the dealer.
b) The player that is said to be in the small blind is the player to the immediate left of the dealer button.
c) The player that is said to be in the big blind is the player to the immediate left of the player in the small blind.
d) If the player in the small blind is eliminated, the button moves to the empty position and the person behind the button deals for the phantom player. The other players post blinds as usual.
e) New players to a table are dealt in immediately. If a player is seated in the big blind position, the player must post the big blind and will be dealt in the hand.
f) Any player who intentionally dodges any blind when moving from a broken table will incur a penalty.
g) When there are two players remaining, the player that is due to assume the big blind will do so. The other player will inherit the small blind and the button. The small blind or button will act first prior to the flop and second after the flop.
h) The blinds will increase over the course of an event in timed intervals called rounds. When a new round is announced, the new blinds and antes apply to the next hand.
7. Betting Action
a) In turn, players should state their intention as check, bet, call, raise or fold (pass). Players should also clearly state the amount of the bet or raise or the new total amount which must be called by the other players in the hand.
b) The release of chips after a single forward motion is considered the physical act of betting (or calling or raising).
c) Verbal declarations are binding and take precedence over physical actions.
d) Accidentally acting out of turn is not binding on the first offence. Further offences of acting out of turn (accidental or not) are binding.
e) A player who checks out of turn may not bet on their turn to act if there has been no action.
f) A calling, betting or raising action or verbal declaration out of turn is binding if there is no action by an intervening player acting in turn after the infraction has been committed. If the action by an intervening player is a raise, the player acting out of turn may not raise – they may either complete their out of turn action and fold or call the intervening player’s bet/raise.
g) Deliberately acting out of turn is not acceptable and may result in a penalty.
h) String betting (placing bets forward with more than one motion without announcing your intention) is forbidden. Any motion after the first motion is not valid and is denied.
i) The minimum bet is the amount of the big blind.
j) The minimum raise must be at least equal to the amount of the previous bet or raise. If a player raises more than 50% but less than a minimum raise, the raise must be completed as a minimum raise.
k) Before the flop, if a player releases an oversized chip into the pot without making a verbal declaration, the action is considered a call.
l) After the flop, if a player who is facing a bet releases an oversized chip into the pot without making a verbal declaration, the action is considered a call.
m) After the flop, if a player who is the initial bettor releases an oversized chip into the pot without making a verbal declaration, the action is considered a bet and the chip value is considered the size of the bet.
n) At any time, if a player verbally states “raise” and releases an oversized chip into the pot, the action is considered a complete bet and the chip value is considered the size of the bet (the call and the raise combined).
o) Splashing the pot is not acceptable and may result in a penalty. Players are to place their bets neatly and calmly in front of them. Once all action is complete, the dealer will pull all the chips together into the pot and make change if required.
p) If a player lacks sufficient chips for a blind or to call a bet, the player is entitled to get action on whatever amount of chips the player has. In this situation a side pot would occur for players with remaining chips.
q) Anytime there is less than a full raise (all in), the betting is not reopened for players who have already acted.
r) All players must remain at the table if they still have action pending on a hand. If a player leaves the table and does not return when it is their turn to act, their hand is dead and must be folded by the dealer.
8. Tournament Chips
a) All chips must be visibly displayed at all times. Players may not hold or transport tournament chips in any manner that takes them out of view. A player who has chips out of view for any reason will forfeit the chips and may face further penalties including disqualification. The forfeited chips will be taken out of play from the tournament.
b) Players must keep their highest denomination chips clearly visible at all times.
c) Players must keep their chips neatly stacked at all times in easily countable and dividable stacks of the same denomination.
d) At the request of the Tournament Director, all players must exchange their chips for chips of different denominations when asked to do so. The “chip up” system will generally be used for regular events and the standard “chip race” will be used for Season Finale events.
e) Only the dealer or designate is allowed to touch the chips in the pot.
f) If you must make change, you must do so with another player at the table – between hands if possible. If you are unable to make change, the dealer will make change for you from the pot after the action is completed by all players. In this case you must be very clear to the dealer as to your actions before placing a large chip forward as a bet.
g) Split pots must be divided up by the dealer or designate only.
h) In the case of a split pot, any odd chip will be given to the first player to the left of the button.
i) Any player who must leave before the end of the tournament must quietly inform the Tournament Director. When the player leaves, their chips will be removed from play. Their finishing position will be calculated as if they had been eliminated at that time.
j) Chip dumping (when a player deliberately looses his chips to another player) is not allowed. Any players involved (giver or receiver) will be penalized or disqualified. This includes when a player decides to leave the event early.
9. Cards and Hands
a) All cards must remain above the top of the table and visible at all times. Players are responsible for protecting their own hand at all times (players are encouraged to cap their cards with a chip or other small object if they are in a hand).
b) If a dealer kills an unprotected hand, the player will have no redress and will not be entitled to his chips back. An exception would be if a player raised and his raise had not been called yet, he would be entitled to receive his raise back.
c) Folding a hand may be indicated verbally or by discarding one's hand face down into or toward the pile of other discards called the muck.
d) Folding face up (submitting cards to the muck face up) automatically forfeits the hand in any situation.
e) If at any time a player’s cards touch the muck, the cards are dead and must remain in the muck and the player loses all action on that hand. The only exception to this is when the hand in question needs to be shown down and the cards are clearly identifiable.
f) The current dealer is the only player allowed to touch the muck. No player is allowed to turn over any cards in the muck pile. This is cheating and may result in a penalty.
g) No player is allowed to rabbit hunt (view the next community cards that would have come up once a hand is over). This is cheating and may result in a penalty.
h) Dealers cannot kill a winning hand that was turned face up and was obviously the winning hand.
i) A player who exposes his cards during play may incur a penalty, but will not have his hand killed. If any player at the table saw the exposed cards, any other player has a right to know what the exposed cards were and the cards will be shown to the entire table upon completion of the hand.
j) If a player unintentionally exposes his cards during play, his hand will not be ruled dead. If any player at the table saw the exposed cards, any other player has a right to know what the exposed cards were and the cards will be shown to the entire table upon completion of the hand.
k) At the showdown, players begin the show their cards starting with the player to the left of the last to call. A player may fold his cards if they cannot win over a previously shown hand.
l) Any player who is in the hand at the showdown may ask to see both pocket cards from a player who reveals only one.
m) A player must show both hole cards in order to claim any part of a pot.
n) Any player may ask another player to reveal his or her pocket cards if they were exposed to any player at the table.
o) The right to dispute a hand ends when the next hand begins (first riffle of the deck).
p) When a player is “all in” and there is to be no more betting, all hands must be turned face up before the remaining community cards are dealt. Players are not permitted to muck hands in this situation.
q) Verbally disclosing the contents of any folded hand before the hand is entirely completed is prohibited as the information can unduly influence the course of play for the players remaining in the hand.
r) Physically and/or verbally reacting to the board (flop, turn, river) after you have folded and before the hand is entirely completed is prohibited as the information can unduly influence the course of play for the players remaining in the hand.
s) Repeatedly disclosing the contents of your hand or reacting to the board after folding may result in a penalty or tournament disqualification.
10. Dead Button
a) No player should miss a big or small blind through players being eliminated.
b) If the player in the big blind is eliminated, the button will move normally and there will be no small blind. The following hand, the button will move into the position where the eliminated player was, creating a dead button situation. This means that there is no player at that position, the hand is dealt by the player to the right of the dead button.
c) If the player in the small blind is eliminated, the button will move into the position where the eliminated player was, creating a dead button situation. This means that there is no player at that position, the hand is dealt by the player to the right of the dead button.
d) If both of the players in the blinds are eliminated in the same hand, the button will move into the position where the former small blind was and there will be no small blind. The following hand, the button will move into the position where the former big blind was. Normal play continues from the following hand.
11. Penalty Situations
a) Penalties available for use by the Tournament Director are verbal warnings, 5, 10 and 15 minutes away from the table and may be used with discretion. These may be utilized up to and including disqualification.
b) A penalty may be invoked if a player does not follow the Tournament Rules, violates poker etiquette or is involved in unacceptable or abusive behaviour.
c) Players serving time penalties will have their blinds posted by the dealer.
d) A disqualified player will have all their chips removed from play.
12. Other Rules
a) Tournaments will continue until one player wins all the chips or a predetermined time limit has been reached. In the case of the time limit being reached, the standings will be determined via chip totals for the remaining finishing positions.
b) Players are not allowed to make a deal at the final table of any Tournament where points are involved (points cannot be allocated other than by finish position).
c) When a Player loses all of their chips, they are eliminated from play and must leave the table and report to the tournament director to receive their points. If a player does not report to the Tournament Director, they will not receive their points for the event.
d) If two or more players are eliminated on the same hand, the player who started the hand with the most chips will be awarded the higher finishing position.
e) English only may be spoken at the table. Local rules may allow another language to be spoken in specific regions.
f) One player to a hand. You may not ask for any advice regarding how to act from any other players or spectators. If you need help, you must ask the Tournament Director.
g) Soft playing (deliberately failing to bet or raise in a situation that would normally merit such an action because of your opponent – a friend etc.) is not allowed. Any players involved will be penalized or disqualified.
h) Another player may call for a clock against a player who is taking an unreasonable amount of time to make a decision.
i) Once a clock is called for, the player with action will be given one minute to make a decision. If a decision has not been made by the time 50 seconds has elapsed, there will be a 10-second verbal countdown. If a player has not acted on his hand by the time the countdown is completed to zero, the hand will be considered dead.
j) Players going from a broken table to fill in seats assume the responsibilities of their new position. They may receive any position from blind to button.
k) The only place a moved player cannot be placed is between the small blind and the button. If it is necessary for a player to be moved to this position, that player must sit out that hand.
l) A player moved to balance two tables will be the player who will not lose position as a result of the move. Play may be halted temporarily to accommodate for the move. In a case where multiple seats are open, the worst positioned seats are the most preferable to be moved.
If you have read this far, congratulations!
Here is a great link to the top 12 worst poker etiquette mistakes. A great read ... http://www.pokerlistings.com/top-12-worst-poker-etiquette-mistakes-infographic