RA USPGA

 Category Sub-category Topic  Description of Change
 Taking relief 
 
 Dropping procedure  Where a ball must be dropped

 New rule: Drop in a defined relief area.

 Current rule: Sometimes the drop is in a specified area, sometimes it is on or as near as possible to a spot or a line.

 Dropping procedure  Where a dropped ball must come to rest

 New rule: The ball must come to rest in the relief area where it was dropped. If the ball comes to rest outside of the relief area, the player will drop a second time in the relief area. If the ball again comes to rest outside the relief area, the player will place it where the ball first touched the ground on the second drop.

 Current rule: Measured by using 1 or 2 club-lengths (with any club the player selects).

 Dropping procedure  Measuring the size of the relief area where a ball must be dropped and played

 New rule: The relief area is measured by measuring 1 or 2 club lengths (which is defined as the longest club the player has during the round, other than a putter).

Current rule: The ball must be re-dropped if it rolls to any of the nine specified areas (Rule 20-2c), such as rolling more than 2 club-lengths from where the dropped ball struck the ground.

 Dropping procedure  How to drop a ball

 New rule: The ball must be dropped straight down from knee height (the height of the player’s knee when in a standing position).

 Current rule: Stand erect, hold the ball at shoulder height and arm’s length.

 Lost ball minutes  Time allowed for a ball search

 New rule: A ball is lost if not found in three minutes

 Current rule: A ball is lost if not found in five minutes. 


 Substituting ball when removed  Substituting ball when taking relief

 New rule: A player may always substitute a ball when taking relief

Current rule: the player must use the original ball when taking free relief (with exceptions); a subsituted ball is only allowed when taking penalty relief.

 Embedding ball  Taking relief for a ball embedded in its own pitch-mark

 New Rule: A player may take releif without penalty for an embedded ball anywhere in the "general area" (new term for "through the green"), unless a Local Rule has been adotpted restricting relief only to area cut to fairway height or less.

 Current rule: Relief is allowed only in areas cut to fairway height or less, unless a Local Rule has been adopted allowing relief anywhere (except in sand) through the green.