HCC Handicap Policy


 Bylaws and Guidelines for Heathrow/Legacy Golfers

ARTICLE I- Title Purpose and Authority


The name of this organization shall be the Heathrow/Legacy Handicap Committee, hereafter referred to as the HLHC.


The HLHC was established to ensure that the Handicap Index of each member is maintained fairly, equitably and in accordance with the rules of the United States Golf Association (USGA) Handicap System, hereafter referred to as the “Manual.” The HLHC recognizes that the Manual is broadly worded in many areas and leaves considerable discretion to Heathrow Country Club & Legacy Club hereafter referred to as Heathrow/Legacy, as to the best way to implement the system. Accordingly, the HLHC adopts the following rules, for the performance of its duties.


To meet the requirement of the Manual (as updated) Section1, Purpose, Authorization and Licensing, paragraph1-2, the policies of a golf club must be consistent with “The Rules of Golf’ and “The USGA Handicap System.” An essential element is the requirement that each golf club must have a Handicap Committee to ensure the integrity of the USGA Handicap System.

ARTICLE II- Handicap Committee (HLHC) Responsibilities

  • Ensure the Handicap Index maintained by Heathrow/Legacy golfers is fair and accurate.
  • Educate Heathrow/Legacy members regarding the rules for maintaining a Handicap Index and take corrective action when Heathrow/Legacy members are not in compliance with the rules.
  • Establish and maintain a system of peer review to validate handicaps
  • Encourage all golfers to maintain a fair and equitable Handicap Index.
  • Provide a means for all golfers to record their scores at the club on the computer in the Pro Shops, Men’s Card Room and online via the Florida State Golf Association’s FSGA’s website.
  • Provide the capability to print out handicap labels from the Heathrow/Legacy computers.
  • Promote peer review of all golfers in every playing group to ensure accurate scores are recorded and posted.
  • Encourage all golfers to report to the HLHC any violations that cannot be resolved within their group.
  • Conduct random handicap audits.

ARTICLE III- Membership

Members of the HLHC shall be members who maintain a Handicap Index and are volunteers appointed by the committee chairperson with the approval of the Director of Golf Operations, and General Manager. Club employees may serve on the Handicap Committee, but an Employee may not serve as chairperson.

ARTICLE IV- Committee and Duties

The HLHC shall consist of a chairperson approved by the Director of Golf Operations, and General Manager, and a suitable number of members. Normally, these members should represent Heathrow/Legacy Men’s and Women’s Golf Associations and other players and player groups of varying characteristics with interests in accurate member handicap indexes.

The HLHC shall operate in accordance with the Manual and rules and policies adopted by the USGA. If any point is not expressly covered by the Manual or under the rules and procedures adapted by the USGA, the HLHC shall make its decision in accordance with equity.

The duties of the chairperson shall be to call and preside at HLHC meetings, appoint a Secretary and provide reports to the Director of Golf Operations.

The duties of the secretary shall be to maintain and distribute records and minutes of all membership meetings and perform all other duties assigned by the chairperson.

ARTICLE V- Meetings, Quorum and Voting

Voting on all matters shall be by show of hands by all committee members attending the meeting. Four committee members shall constitute a quorum to transact business of any regular or special meeting. Voting via email is appropriate when a physical meeting/attainment of a quorum is not possible.

Guidelines for Heathrow/Legacy Golfers

ARTICLE VI- Compliance

Compliance with the USGA Manual means all acceptable rounds played must be posted in the handicap system. In addition, scores must be posted for all acceptable rounds played in areas where an active season is in effect (i.e. Arizona, California etc.) as established by the authorized golf association. In addition, all scores, including tournament scores, must be adjusted for Equitable Stroke Control (ESC). ESC is a downward adjustment of individual hole scores, for handicap purposes, in order to make handicaps more representative of a player’s potential ability. ESC sets a maximum number that a player can post on any hole depending on the player’s Course Handicap. ESC is used only when an actual or most likely score exceeds the player’s maximum number based on the table below. Each player is responsible for adjusting his/her own score in accordance with ESC.

ARTICLE VII- Posting of Score

A.Posting Scores–Posting scores in person immediately (the day of play) following the round at the course where the round is played is the preferred way to expose scores to peer review. It is particularly important that scores be posted prior to the next revision of the handicaps so that the scoring record is up-to-date. Scores posted on the FSGA website are transferred to the Heathrow / Legacy Handicap Computers automatically. Revisions to Handicap Indexes are made on the 1st and 15th of each month.

B.Posting a Tournament Score– A tournament score is a score made in a competition organized and conducted by a committee in charge of the competition. The competition must identify a winner(s) based on a stipulated round(s), and must be played under the principles of the Rules of Golf. The committee in charge of the competition shall announce in advance whether the score shall be identified by the letter “T” when posted.

C.Failure to Post– If the HLHC finds that a Player has not posted a score the day the round was played a penalty score will be posted. The penalty score will be equal to the lowest or highest (at the HLHC discretion) handicap differential in the golfer’s last 20 scores. If a golfer has 4 penalty scores as a result of not posting a score, the golfer will be subject to withdrawal of his/her handicap index for 60 days.

Tournament scores will be posted by the Heathrow & Legacy Pro Shop staff unless contrary notice is given prior to the tournament. Failing to adjust for ESC will result in a penalty score being posted. If 3 penalty scores are posted, the golfer will be subject to withdrawal of his/her handicap for 60 days.


First Offense & Second Offense:    If the Player has not posted a score the day of playing the round the HLHC will issue a penalty score. The Player will not be notified of HLHC action.

Third Offense:    HLHC issues a warning letter and issues a penalty score.

Fourth Offense:     HLHC withdraws player’s handicap index for 60 days or other penalty deemed appropriate by the HLHC.


Please note: A tournament score will remain in your handicap record for one year or longer if it is still a part of your most recent 20 scores after 12 months.


“Handicap Differential” is the difference between a player’s adjusted gross score and The USGA Course Rating of the course on which the score was made, multiplied by 113, then divided by the Slope Rating from the tees played and rounded to the nearest tenth,e.g.,12.8.

D. Player Manipulates Round– If a player manipulates his/her scores to influence his/her USGA Handicap Index, the HLHC shall adjust or withdraw his/her USGA Handicap Index,

Depending on the severity of the offense. Examples of manipulating scores include the following:

  • Posting erroneous scores.
  • Stopping play after seven holes to avoid posting scores.
  • Repeatedly playing more than one ball to avoid posting scores.
  • Not adjusting holes cores.
  • Deliberately reporting more or fewer strokes than actually scored.
  • Deliberately taking extra strokes to inflate a score.

E. Continued Violations of Unacceptable Scores– The HLHC is duly responsible to identify and notify those players who regularly violate any provision of Section 5-1e of the USGA Handicap Manual that such rounds are unacceptable for handicap purposes. If the player continues to violate clause(s) within Section 5-le after being notified by the HLHC, the HLHC is authorized to consider withdrawal of the player’s Handicap index. Scores made under the following conditions are not acceptable for handicap purposes and shall not be entered in the player’s scoring record:

  • When fewer than 7 holes are played.
  • When made on a golf course in an area in which an inactive season established by the authorized golf association is in effect.
  • When the majority of the holes are not played in accordance with the principle of The Rules of Golf.
  • When the length of the course is less than 3,000 yards for I8 holes (or less than 1,500 yards for 9 holes).
  • When, as a condition of the competition, the maximum number of clubs allowed is less than 14, or types of clubs are limited.
  • When scores are made on a course with no USGA Course or Slope Rating.
  • When a player carries or uses non-conforming clubs or uses nonconforming balls or tees or when artificial devices (as defined under The Rules of Golf, Rule4-1 and 5-1) are used during the execution of a stroke.

F. Posting Score When a Complete Round is not Played– If 13 or more holes are played, the player shall post an I8-hole score. If 7 to 12 holes are played, the player shall post a nine-hole score. In either case, scores for unplayed holes shall be recorded as par plus any handicap strokes that the player is entitled to receive on the unplayed holes.

G. Posting Nine-Hole Scores– To be acceptable for handicap purposes, nine-hole scores Must meet the following conditions:

  • The course must have a nine-hole USGA Course Rating and USGA Slope Rating.
  • At least seven holes must be played.

H. Returning of Scorecards– The HLHC may not require the returning of scorecards from players in order for a score to be posted. The HLHC, on occasion, may periodically request that the players return scorecards in order to sample the accuracy with which players are adjusting scores. Compliance with such a request is voluntary on the part of a player, and in any case the HLHC must not take punitive action regarding the scoring record or the Handicap Index if a scorecard does not accompany a score. However, the HLHC may require a return of scorecards for a provisional period from a player who has had a Handicap Index withdrawn or modified. The above does not prohibit a Heathrow/Legacy Association or Heathrow/Legacy from requiring scorecards for all acceptable rounds as a requirement for membership or as a prerequisite for playing in Heathrow/Legacy or an Association event.

I.Handicap Committee Posting a Score for a Player– If a player fails to post a score, the HLHC may post the score without the player’s authorization. In a competition, the Committee in charge of the competition will post the scores of all competitors unless competitors are notified to the contrary.

J.Handicap Adjustments– Normally, no penalty score should be posted or Handicap Index adjustment should be made for an innocent or inadvertent error made by a player in posting a score or failing to post a score, particularly when the error is capable of correction. A player should post an acceptable score NLT 48 hours after play.

Posting errors will be corrected by the HLHC for the day in error. The HLHC believes that the purpose of the system is to provide fair and equitable handicaps to enable players of differing abilities to compete on an equitable basis, and not to punish or intimidate members and players. However, nothing in this rule is intended to limit the ability of the HLHC to deal appropriately with persistent or willful violators of the rules.

K.AppealProcess– If a player is dissatisfied with any action taken against him or her by the HLHC, the player may appeal that action. The appeal shall be heard by a three-person appellate section of the HLHC whose members are appointed by the Chairperson of the HHC. The members of the appellate section shall not otherwise participate in the deliberations and decisions of the HLHC in any manner. The chairperson of the HLHC and any member of Heathrow or Legacy shall not be part of the appellate section. All decisions of the appellate section are final and are not subject to further review.

ARTICLE VIII- Peer Reviews  Peer review is an integral part of the USGA Handicap System to ensure that the player’s handicap Index accurately reflects the player’s skills and ability and to ensure fair and honest competition between players of differing abilities. Peer review is the process of providing a reasonable and regular opportunity for members of Heathrow & Legacy to play golf with each other, and of providing access to scoring records for inspection by others. The Peer Review process may and should be accomplished by each Heathrow & Legacy members, as well as the HLHC, as follows:

  • Ensure that hole scores are correct and have been adjusted for Equitable Stroke Control when necessary;
  • Review and attest scorecards prior to turning them in;
  • View member scoring records at the club on the computer in the Pro Shop or on line via the FSGA’s website.


This document shall be prominently posted so that all members of Heathrow & Legacy will be familiar with it and will know their obligations under the system.

ARTICLE X- Amendments and Parliamentary Authority

These by laws and guidelines may be amended by a majority vote of the Handicap Committee. Roberts Rules of Order, Revised, shall be used as the authority in the conduct of committee business.

Approved by:

Chairperson – Andy Thompson

Heathrow Legacy Handicap Committee


Concurred by:

Ryan Fahler

Director of Golf Operations


Aaron Straub

General Manager


February, 2017