Amateur Golf Status | Mass Golf

About Amateur Status

Amateur golf has a well-established tradition in the game, including a history of competitions limited to amateur golfers. The Rules of Amateur Status define who is eligible to compete as an amateur golfer. Golf is largely self-regulating, and to help protect the integrity of the game by minimizing pressure on the Rules of Golf and the Rules of Handicapping, the Rules of Amateur Status limit the form and value of prizes an amateur golfer is allowed to accept based on performance in competition. 

The R&A and the USGA updated the Rules of Amateur Status on October 26, 2021 with the new changes going into effect on January 1, 2022. These changes result from a multi-year modernization initiative that identified a clear need to bring the Rules up to date to reflect today’s global amateur game and ensure that the Rules are easier to understand and apply. 

Press Release

Please click here to visit the USGA’s website for an overview of the recent Amateur Status modernization.

QUICK LINKS: Rules of Amateur Status (Full Rules) | Infographic: Rules of Amateur Status | USGA Amateur Status Website


Who is considered an Amateur Golfer?

All golfers are amateurs unless they:

  • Accept a prize that is not allowed under Rule 3: Prizes,
  •  Play in a golf competition as a professional,
  • Accept payment or compensation for giving instruction that is not allowed under Rule 4: Instruction,
  • Are employed (including being self-employed) as a golf club or driving range professional, or
  • Hold membership of an association for professional golfers. 


Amateur Status and Reinstatement

Except for the Massachusetts Open, U.S. Open, U.S. Women’s Open, U.S. Senior Open and U.S. Senior Women’s Open all Mass Golf and USGA Championship events are open to amateur golfers only. Mass Golf works in concert with the USGA in processing and examining the application of individuals seeking amateur status reinstatement.

Individuals looking to be reinstated as amateurs should contact Kevin Eldridge, Director of Rules & Competitions, directly at 774-430-9103 or visit the USGA’s Amateur Status page for more information.