resources for Referees

For new, returning and transferring referees

Referee Resources

STSR has compiled information covering many topics and questions new and returning referees may have. Whether you are a new or returning referee, use the information on this page to assist in your registration. Many topics have FAQs designed to help you find the information you are looking for. Click on the appropriate topic for more information.

Fitness Testing Resources

Information in this section is related to USSF fitness tests for regional referees, national referees and national assistant referees.

Recertification & Transferring to South Texas

Use the information in this section to get information on the recertification process.

If you are a US Soccer certified referee, instructor, assessor or assignor from another state or an association outside of South Texas, you will need to transfer your registration to STSR from your current state association. You can easily do this online through the STSR transfer form. Once your transfer is complete, you will be able to manage all areas of your annual registration and certificatons through STSR. Start the transfer process now.

Transfer to STSRTransfer to STSRTransfer to STSR

Any referee who was not registered with the U.S. Soccer Federation the previous year may be certified at the grade previously held after taking and passing the qualifying clinic, written examination, fitness test, and assessments. The following policy applies to referees who were previously certified and registered with the Federation but have lapsed a year or more in registration:

Last Certified as a Grade 6 or more Advanced Grade

  1. Referees can only be registered at the grade they qualify for.
  2. Referees who were Grade 6 or higher will be downgraded to Grade 7.
  3. Once they retake the appropriate course listed below for Grade 7 Referees and have completed all the requirements
    for the previously held grade, they may regain their advanced grade. If the referee is attending a clinic for the next badge year between July 1st and October 30th, they
    may begin refereeing in the current year, if they pay both the current year and next badge year registration fee. This is not required if they are taking the Entry Grade 8 clinic.  

Last Certified as a Grade 8 or Grade 7 or Emeritus

  1. Grade 8/7/Emeritus referees who miss 1-2 consecutive years of registration may be re-recertified as a grade 8/7/Emeritus after completing a Grade 8/7/Emeritus Recertification clinic. If the referee is attending a clinic for the next badge year between July 1st and October 30th, they will be charged both the current and next year's registration fee, and may start officiating when approved.
  2. Grade 8/7/Emeritus referees who miss 3 or more consecutive years of registration can be recertified after taking the entire Entry Grade 8 Referee Clinic.  If the referee is attending a clinic for the next badge year between July 1st and Dec 31st, they can start officiating once they are approved.

Last Certified as Grade 9

  1. A Grade 9 Referee who misses one or more years of registration is eligible to Upgrade by taking the Grade 8 Entry Clinic if they are at least age 14. If the referee is attending a clinic for the next badge year between July 1st and Dec 31st, they can start officiating as soon as they are approved.

When registering for a clinic, you will be requested to enter your personal information, or verify your Personal Information. Then you will see a Clinic Reservation page. Your current grade and Recertify should be already checked. Press Submit, then click on "Reserve" to reserve the clinic. Lastly, proceed to the "Checkout" section on the right side to pay the fees. Do not attempt to checkout before you have reserved a clinic. Note: you are not registered in the clinic until the fees are paid.

If you are new to South Texas but were certified in another region of Texas or the United States, use the Transfer facility outlined in the Transferring to South Texas section of this page.

If you wish to reserve yourself a seat in a recertification clinic you will need to Sign-in as a STSR soccer offical. In order to view available clinics, use the "I want to : Register for a clinic" on your Home Page, once you Sign-in.

The  registration period is open from July 1st - June 25th. STSR also provides Recertification clinics in the January - June timeframe for the procrastinators among us, however a late registration fee is charged if you have not recertified before your badge has expired.

All USSF Soccer officials must renew their certification and registration annually. The badge / Registration year runs from Jan 1st to Dec 31st. However, recertification clinics for the next badge year start in September of the current year. You are expected to recertify and register BEFORE your badge expires on December 31st.

New Referees

New referees can find the information they need to begin the registration process by clicking on the topics below.

Referee clinics for new referees are offered through the U.S. Soccer Learning Center. When first accessing the U.S. Soccer Learning Center, you will need to follow these steps after arriving on the U.S. Soccer Learning Center web site.

All candidates mU.S.t be 13 years or older to create a profile in the Learning Center and register as a Grassroots Referee.

After clicking on the "Sign Up" in the upper right hand corner, you will be prompted to create a account. Once your account has been created, you may register for the Grassroots– First-time Referee Course will include both an online course and an in-person course with a total fee of $80.

To register for the Grassroots –First-time Referee Course, after you log-in, click on “courses” in the upper left hand corner and in the left column, you will see a button for Grassroots – First-time Referee and after clicking to that page, you will see a button on the right to go to the course list. For courses in your area, set the “Host” filter to South Texas Referee Committee and registering for the course of your choice.

The Grassroots – First-time Referees Online Course involves a 4.5 hour e-learning experience that unites a variety of videos and learning modules which prepares candidates for their assigned tasks and responsibilities as a Grassroots Referee.

 A new referee is required to complete both the Online Course AND the In-Person Course to be officially licensed with U.S. Soccer as a Grassroots Referee.

The online training lessons do NOT have to be completed in order to attend the Field Training Clinic. However all online lessons and the Field Training clinic m U.S.t be satisfactorily completed to obtain your U.S. Soccer Referee License.

Download the U.S. Soccer “Profile Of The Grassroots Referee”.

If you have problems creating an account, or problems with the U.S. Soccer website, email U.S. Soccer Referee Department or call U.S.Soccer at (312) 528-1296 for assistance.

The In-Person portion of a student’s coursework includes practical exercises for aspiring candidates wishing to become U.S. Soccer Grassroots Referees. The goal is to prepare the candidates by offering a SAFE,FUN, reality-based, holistic experience.

The purpose of this session is to provide an opportunity to reinforce concepts and knowledge covered in the online portion of the course via practical exercises. The focus must be on preparing the referee candidate to be ready for their first game.

The In-Person experience also includes online coursework to include:

1. Safe Sport Training (if 18 years old or older – required by Federal Law)

2. Introduction to Safe and Healthy Playing Environments

3. Grassroots Referee Certification Quiz


The course fee for the Grassroots – First-time Referee Course is $80. 

If you are 18+ it is required that you complete the U.S. soccer NCSI background check which has a cost of $30 and is valid for 2 years (This cost will be separately charged prior to your ability to register for the Grassroots - First-time referee course).

The Grassroots – First-time Referee Course are available starting in late-July through November and staring again in January and continuing through mid-April.

A new referee is required to complete both the Online module AND the In-Person session and modules to be officially licensed with U.S. Soccer as a Grassroots Referee.

Once you have become registered for the current year, you may find games to officiate immediately through your local assignor. If you are not aware of whom this individual may be, you can either go to the web site of your local club or association or go to the quick link on the home page “FIND AN ASSIGNOR” and fill out the form. You should receive information is several business days.

To become certified as a Futsal Referee, click here.

Referee Training & Assessment Program Information

Information in this section covers the Laws of the Game and other important program information.

The IFAB is made up of the four British football associations (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) and FIFA. In January 2014 The IFAB officially became registered as an independent association. This was a new beginning, with their own administration, headquarters and, more importantly, statutes that re-define their purpose, structure and responsibilities. IFAB newly introduced bodies, the Football and Technical Advisory Panels FAP and TAP, include members from the football world bringing in their experiences and perspectives as former players or referees.

The Law book has undergone a major overhaul, which reflects the transformation of the organization itself. The new revision is a true milestone and the adopted amendments symbolize a bolder step into the future of football and the Laws of the Game. 

Go to IFAB for the  2019-2020 LOTG Book in various formats.

IFAB has created a document that summarizes the law changes and a document the provides clarification for the law changes from the 2018-2019 year to the 2019-2020 year. These documents provide information and explanation on the implementation and execution of the new laws.

Go to IFAB for the 2019-2020 Law Change Summary and Clarification documents.

You can download a copy of a US Soccer Game and Supplemental Report by clicking the button below. Complete and submit this form to the appropriate competition authorities (e.g., local league, tournament director, cup coordinator, etc.) as directed. If needed, and in addition to the U.S. Soccer Referee Report, the U.S. Soccer Supplemental Referee Report can be used for instances of referee assault, referee abuse, dismissal of team officials, sending-off offenses, serious injuries, game abandonment or other substantial occurrences.

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In order for you to be assessed for grade maintenance or upgrade you MUST have a current year Referee registration and a request for Upgrade or Recertification outstanding. In addition, all members of your officiating crew on the match being assessed must be currently registered as Referees as well. To request an assessment, sign into your account and use the "I want to: Request Assessment" on your home page. You must have worked with your assignor to have been assigned a qualifying game before submitting the request.  The assessor is not ordered until you have paid for the assessment.

Referees at the State or more advanced level for at least a period of 3 years of their refereeing career, may elect to go Emeritus (Retire from their highest position) by selecting the GO EMERITUS when registering at the website if they are 45 years or older.  This may not be used to circumvent the testing and registration procedures of U.S. Soccer. Active Emeritus Referees must qualify each year for the level that they will be officiating and pay the fees for that level. For example, if officiating , they must at least take and pass the Grade 7/8 Recertification clinic. If officiating at higher levels than Grade 7, fitness test and Assessment requirements apply. An Emeritus Referee may reinstate as an active referee at the level the official retired from by requesting "Regain Grade", once all the criteria for the grade has been met.

Lifetime membership for the U.S. Soccer Federation Referee Program is available for those select individuals that have displayed a thorough dedication to the program.  In addition to their contributions, nominees must also meet the following criteria:

  • Minimum age of 60
  • Registered with the program for 25 or more consecutive years

Note that the above criteria is waived for any of the following:

  • Recipients of the Eddie Pearson Award or the William Schofield Award
  • Recipients of the U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame Meritorious Service Award if received for their contribution to the referee program
  • Former FIFA panel officials

Nominations can be submitted to U.S. Soccer by State Referee Administrators or State Referee Committees.  All nominations should be submitted in writing describing the nominee's contributions and include proof that the individual meets the above criteria. The Nomination form can be found here. Please note that lifetime membership is given to those who have made significant contributions to the referee program; meeting the above criteria does not guarantee lifetime membership.  U.S. Soccer reviews and approves all nominations. Lifetime members do not have to pay US Soccer Regsitration fees or clinic fees.

US Soccer Registration Cards, Adult Participation Passes and Badges

Information in this section will help you find answers to questions regarding adult participation passes (KidSafe) and the how to use or replace your US Soccer registration card.

If you have lost your current year badge, and wish to order a replacement, you may do so by signing into your account and using the "I want to: Order Replacement Badge". If you have done this more than once for the current badge,  you will need to order the next badge from the US Soccer store by clicking on the link below, and use R + your 16 digit USSF ID (without the dashes) as the UserID, or the userid you previously set up with US Soccer. Go to the US Soccer Referee Ordering site.

Per South Texas Youth Soccer Association policy, all adults on the team side of a field must visibly wear their current Adult Participation (kidsafe) passes. The referee has authority to check for these passes, and to require any adult not possessing a pass to move from the team side. Effective with the receipt of the 2010 or later US Soccer Registration card, all adult referees are required to have this card in their possession when performing referee duties at a STYSA sanctioned event. This includes when arriving at the fields, and during any breaks between games. While referees are not required to visibly display their card, they should have it readily available if requested. Referees are encouraged to make a copy of their card and laminate it when they first print it from US Soccer SalesForce, to reduce the possible loss or damage to the card. The US Soccer Registration card with Texas South specified on the card will qualify for Adult Participation (kidsafe) verification. In addition, any individual on the STSR approved list is considered to have met the Adult Participation Pass requirement.

US Soccer is no longer mailing out USSF ID cards. You may print yours by going to the US Soccer Salesforce website. If you have never done this, click on the "Sign Up" button on the US Soccer Salesforce website and enter the requested information. If you already have an account there, click on the login button and enter your username and password that you have for that site. Once in your account, click on Current Registrations and select the Print option next to the corresponding registration. Go to US Soccer Salesforce Site.