USATF Governance Handbook


A. General: An athlete shall be considered a member of the Association in which the athlete is a bona fide resident except as otherwise provided in Regulation 4-B:
1. Athlete Affiliation: An athlete may compete as a representative of a local club, educational institution, or other organization, and additionally may be listed as competing for the club and/or a sponsor, subject to USOC regulations. The club and athlete must be USATF members in good standing.
2. Unattached athletes: An unattached competitor is an athlete member who represents no club, educational institution, or other organization. An unattached athlete may compete in the Association in which the athlete is a member.
3. Notification of changes: Only an athlete, or his/her legal guardian, may give notice of a change of
representation. An athlete member who wishes to change representation shall notify the Association, in writing or online, prior to the effective date of the change.
4. Fees for changes: All applications for changes of representation must be accompanied by a fee, if any, to be determined by the local membership committee and/or local Sport Committee.

B. Residency exceptions:
1. Residency exceptions: Except as provided in the USATF Competition Rules governing Youth Athletics,
USATF shall permit an athlete to transfer membership to an Association other than the one in which the athlete resides.
2. Team scoring: Sport Committees and Councils may establish athlete eligibility and residency requirements for team scoring at their respective championships. These requirements shall be reflected in the competition rules.

C. Transfers:
1. Between Associations: In order to transfer membership from one Association to another, an adult athlete age 19 years and older shall send a request in writing or by email to USATF shall notify the affected associations and the athlete.
2. Between clubs/organizations: To transfer representation from one club /organization to another, an athlete must not have competed for the first club in sanctioned competition for the previous ninety (90) days regardless of residency, unless the athlete falls within one of the exceptions below.
3. Exceptions:
a. Student: An athlete who is a member of a club or organization who wishes to compete as an undergraduate student for a college or university (two- or four-year institution) shall be automatically released without notice by the club or organization when the college season begins, to compete for that college or university in open competition, if the collegiate team is a member of USATF. The athlete shall similarly be automatically released without notice to the school immediately after the academic eligibility period ends, to represent the club or organization of the athlete’s choice. The athlete must verify the college’s academic eligibility period start and end dates if requested by either the local committee or Association membership committee involved.
b. Armed forces: An athlete member on active duty in the United States Armed Forces may, upon receiving permission from the local membership committee, represent in open competition the military organization or the Athletics club to which the athlete belongs, or both. Any points scored by that athlete shall count for the Athletics club, except where a point trophy is advertised to be contested by a military organization;
c. Race walker: An athlete may compete as a member of a club or organization in race walking and for another club or organization in another Athletics discipline, provided the two clubs or organizations involved do not both participate in race walking. For example, an athlete may race walk for one club which may or may not have a running program, and run for another club that has no race walking program.
d. Waiver: The local or national membership committee may waive the ninety (90) day unattached period required by paragraph C-2 if it determines that the change in organization was caused by events outside the athlete’s control and is in the best interests of Athletics or the athlete.

D. Resolution of disputes: The athlete shall have responsibility for giving proper notice of a change of representation. In the event of a dispute among clubs, educational institutions, organizations, and an athlete regarding a transfer of representation, the athlete’s written designation of representation shall be determinative.