If you can’t find the answer to your question below, please fill out our contact form.


Is there a re-entry option?

All players not in the Open section may drop out of the 5-day schedule and pay $200 to re-enter into the 4-day schedule before the close of registration at 8:00 a.m. EST on October 7, 2016. However, due to FIDE rules for norms and considerations, there can only be one schedule in the Open section (no re-entry option).

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What is the Redemption Jackpot?

Most players with a bad score simply wish to drop out of a tournament since they have nothing to play for. The Redemption Jackpot is a new set of prizes awarded to players who are having a poor result in the first half of the tournament. Players with 50% (2.0 points) or less after 4 rounds may pay $100 before the 5th round in order to enter the jackpot. The top scorers in the last three rounds will take home one of 5 place prizes (in addition to any prize they might come back to win in the tournament). Once again, only the score from the last three rounds will count (maximum 3 points). The Redemption Jackpot will be open to the entire tournament of struggling performers after 4 rounds in all sections. More players, bigger pool, more winnings! 75% of the pool will be given back to the players along the following lines:

1st place - 25%
2nd place - 20%
3rd place - 15%
4th place - 10%
5th place - 5%

For example, if 200 players enter at $100, the total Redemption Jackpot will be $20,000 with the prizes being distributed as such:

1st place: $5,000
2nd place: $4,000
3rd place: $3,000
4th place: $2,000
5th place: $1,000

Redemption Jackpot Registration:  Onsite from October 7@9pm - October 8@10:30am EDT

Entry Fee: $100

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What is the Millionaire Chess Open's sandbagging and security policy for the tournament?

The organizers of the Millionaire Chess Open wish to ensure, to the maximum level we are capable, that our tournament is handled in a way that guarantees the maximum fairness to all participants.

We will have some obvious measures (extra security and TD staff, searches of suspected offenders, eye-in-the-sky cameras), some not-so-obvious measures (plain clothes security), and other measures we won't reveal. We are taking advantage of the tournament being held in a casino, and anything less than fair play will be discovered and dealt with strictly.

While we believe that 99% of all chess players are honorable competitors, we are well aware there is a small minority who do not put a premium on fair play. Because of this unfortunate reality, we are instituting a strong ratings policy to counter sandbaggers and cheaters. This will work in concert with our Security Policy, which together should cover most of the circumstances that may arise.

Cheating: A Zero Tolerance Policy

On-site security will be very tight at the tournament. Any player who is proven to be cheating by using electronic devices or computers, talking to anyone without permission from a TD, speaking in a different language to anyone while that person's game is in progress, making unusually frequent or lengthy trips away from the board or any method of illegally exploiting the system will be kicked out of the tournament and no longer allowed to play in any future Millionaire Chess events. There will be no refund of entry fees.

USCF ratings alert:

To prevent sandbagging, the tournament will use each player's highest post-event rating for events rated between January 1, 2015 and August 31, 2016. Events played in September or October of 2016 will not affect the player’s rating for the event.

Post-event ratings can be found on the "Tnmt. Hist" tab of a player's USCF MSA record.  You may search the USCF rating database by clicking here.

The Tournament Director reserves the right to use CCA minimum ratings, which are fair assessments based on Continental Chess Tournaments held by premier organizer Bill Goichberg over the last 40 years.

Players with multiple ratings:

See Rating Rules


  • FIDE ratings - 60 points will be added
  • Bermuda, Canada (other than Quebec), Jamaica - no change
  • Quebec (FQE) -100 points added
  • England - x8 + 700
  • German players with no FIDE rating - DWZ + 190.
  • German players with FIDE ratings - FIDE + 60 if rating over 1800 or FIDE plus 80 if rating under 1800. If FIDE + 100 is lower than the DWZ, then DWZ plus zero (no adjustment).
  • Other national ratings with confirmation from national website or official federation - 200 points added

Non-verified foreign ratings- director will assign a rating that, in most cases, will not be less than 2200.

Foreign players:

Foreign players must provide proof of their rating in the last year in order to play in sections other than the Open. No player will be allowed to play in any class section without a rating (provisional ratings do not count). Rating equivalents will be used.

Players should confirm their section before committing their travel plans. No refunds (other than entry fees) will be given to players who disagree with the Chief Tournament Director's decision as to which section they will be assigned. Traveling players who plan to register close to the tournament date should be forewarned that they may end up playing in a section that they did not anticipate. The best policy is to register well in advance so that you may be notified very early on of the Chief TD's decision.

Players who fail to disclose a rating from a non-US or FIDE rating system may be sanctioned up to and including being removed from the tournament without a refund.

Provisional ratings and Unrated:

Players with Provisional Ratings or Unrated must play in the Open section.

In order to be considered as having a non-provisional rating for MCO #3, a player must have played 60 officially Rated Tournament games under a single rating system (USCF, FIDE, or otherwise). The games must have been rated before August 31, 2016. The 60 games are to ensure that the player’s rating is a very reliable indicator of their actual playing strength.

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If I win a prize at the tournament, when will I receive my money?

All prize winnings will be distributed at the close of the tournament. Prize winners must show two forms of identification to claim their prize: A valid driver's license, passport or other official picture ID and a Social Security Card. Winners who do not have those two forms of identification will have their prize winnings mailed to them after their identity can be verified. Minors must be accompanied by a parent or guardian with the appropriate identification.

Players with a Social Security number should feel free to print and legibly fill in the W-9 form before the event and hand it in at the Registration Desk upon arrival at the tournament. This will allow the player to more quickly receive his/her prize at the end of the tournament.

Foreign Players should feel free to print and legibly fill in the W-8 form before the event and hand it in at the Registration Desk upon arrival at the tournament. This will allow the player to more quickly receive his/her prize at the end of the tournament.

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I am a member of the press. Are there any special conditions for me to attend the tournament?

All members of the press will be given Press Credentials so that they can have access to most areas of the tournament; access to restricted areas will only be granted by the Chief Tournament Director. Members of the press are asked to email contact@millionairechess.com prior to the tournament if possible. Members of the press, if playing in the tournament, will still need to pay their own tournament registration entry fee.

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I can no longer play in the tournament, what is your refund policy?

Please see the guidelines detailed in the Tournament Refund & Cancellation Policy.

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Can I register onsite?

No. There is no onsite registration. This is to ensure that the TDs have more than enough time to vet the ratings of all the players well before the start of round 1. Online registration ends October 5, 2016 at 12 noon EDT.  

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How will tiebreaks be determined?

The tie-break format to decide who goes on to Millionaire Monday will be a playoffs based on the number of participants trying to qualify. If, for example, three players have already made it to the final four and 10 players are vying for the final spot, then most likely a blitz playoff will be used. If, however, only two players are vying for that coveted final spot, then most likely a rapid format will be chosen. The Tie-break Playoffs will end inside of 5 hours, which is the normal length of a round. The Chief Tournament Director will have a pre-planned structure ready for any and all eventualities, and will announce what playoff format will be used in each section approximately an hour before the start of the tie-break round. Note that the losers of the Tie-break Playoffs will automatically be awarded a tie for 5th place (except in the Open section where they will split the $4,000 Tie-break Consolation Prize and continue to play rounds 8 and 9 of the Open to compete for more prizes).  Therefore, each section’s non-qualifier will share 5th and the appropriate number of subsequent prizes, divided in equal shares by the number of players who lost the tie-break in that section.  For example, if there are five players involved in the tie-break in order to select the 4th and final player into Millionaire Monday, the four players who lose the Tie-break Playoffs will split the awards for 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th place for their section.

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I do not have a USCF rating, what rating do I use?

For players with...

FIDE ratings - 60 points will be added

Bermuda, Canada (other than Quebec), Jamaica  - no change

Quebec (FQE) - 100 points added

England - x8 + 700

German players with no FIDE rating - DWZ + 190.

German players with FIDE ratings - FIDE + 100. If FIDE + 100 is lower than the DWZ, then DWZ plus zero (no adjustment).

Other national ratings with confirmation from national website or official federation - 200 points will be added.

Non-verified foreign ratings - director will assign a rating that, in most cases, will not be less than 2200.

The tournament will use players' highest rating on any official rating list, including any added-on points, for pairing and prize purposes. This includes FIDE, USCF, BCF, CFC, etc.

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Will the tournament be supplying sets and clocks?

Yes. Chess sets and clocks are provided at the Millionaire Chess Open.

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Will I be filmed or photographed at the Millionaire Chess Open?

The Millionaire Chess Open is a public event that will be extensively photographed and filmed. Any and every player or spectator may be photographed or captured on camera immediately before, during and immediately after the event. Your participation in the tournament is your tacit consent that you understand that Millionaire Chess has the right to broadcast your image in conjunction with our event, promotions related to the event, on our website, through our social media channels, on our app, and any other media related to our event. Millionaire Chess is not required to use any recording of any individual it captures in association with the event.

Millionaire Chess may take pictures of players for use in creating Player Profiles for potential use on our web page, social media channels, live online broadcast, app, and other media. If you are a registered player and prefer to send your own headshot, please feel free to do so. Millionaire Chess has the right to use any picture it deems appropriate for this purpose.

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What is the tax compliance rules of the Millionaire Chess Open?

Millionaire Chess must report any prize of $600 or more to the IRS. U.S. citizens and permanent residents must complete IRS Form W-9 to receive a prize of more than $600.

1. For prize reporting purposes, Millionaire Chess will calculate the prize NET of the entry fee.

2. A nonresident alien CANNOT use an alternate payer. This person MUST have the 30% backup withholding done on site.

3. A nonresident alien MUST have 30% backup withholding done for ANY cash prize, regardless of amount.

4. A nonresident alien must give his current mailing address to the tournament when receiving his prize. Millionaire Chess will then send him IRS Form 1042, which he may then use to file a tax return with the IRS and try to get his withheld prize money back.

5. Even if a non-resident alien has a taxpayer ID number (TIN), Millionaire Chess MUST withhold 30% of any prize.

6. Certain nonresident aliens with a TIN who win prizes of less than $5,000 may be able to fill out IRS Form 8233 (this is done at the tournament). The IRS will review the form and advise Millionaire Chess within two weeks whether the player can receive the 30% withheld, or whether it has to be remitted to the IRS.

7. For more information about U.S. income taxes, please consult a tax professional.

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I would like to share a room at one of the hotels in order to cut costs. Is there anyone else interested in doing the same?

You may leave your information and someone will get back to you should that possibility arise. Please contact the organizer at contact@millionairechess.com.

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I have a special concern based on my religious belief? What can be done to accommodate me?

Please contact the organizer at contact@millionairechess.com.

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I am an Unrated player. What section can I play in?

Unrated players are only allowed to play in the Open section of the tournament.

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I am an accomplished and internationally-recognized Grandmaster. Do I have to pay to play?

Yes. This tournament is meant to take chess prizes to levels that will allow professional players to thrive. As such, we’re asking everyone to contribute to what we hope will be an eventual massive increase in prize funds for tournaments around the world. While we completely respect the accomplishment of all Grandmasters, we believe that in the long run, they stand to gain the most from a pay to play policy.

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I will be attending this event from outside the United States. Will I need to procure a visa? Will I need an invitation to your event in order to request a visa?

Visa requirements for entry into the United States depend on your country of residence. All players are required to make their own arrangements for procuring a visa. A review of the procedures for applying for a US visa may be found at http://travel.state.gov/visa

In some cases, the application for a visa will require an interview with the local US Consulate and/or an invitation from Millionaire Chess, LLC. In these cases we suggest you schedule your visa interview as soon as possible since often this needs to be done well in advance. If you require an invitation, you must register for the tournament first and submit your invitation request with your order tracking number to contact@millionairechess.com. Please place "Request for invitation for visa application" in the subject line. Millionaire Chess will post your invitation in a timely manner.

If you are unable to attend the Millionaire Chess Open because your visa application was denied, you may request a refund under the guidelines detailed in the Tournament Refund & Cancellation Policy.

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Does the No Early Draw Rule apply to all sections of the tournament?

No. The rule only applies to the Open section.

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Why does the No Early Draw Rule only apply to the Open Section?

The Open section is giving away the most prize money and has the most visibility, which may include television coverage. The sponsors agree with the majority of fans who wish to see the top results decided by real games, and do not wish to jeopardize further interest in their event because of the practice of early draws.

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I have more than one rating. Which one will be used?

See rating rules.In case there is uncertainty as to the validity of a player's rating, or if a player's rating cannot be established, the Tournament Director has a right to assign a player a rating. In all cases, the Tournament Director reserves the right to assign a player a rating. This decision will be final.

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What is the schedule of games for this event?

The schedule of games may be found by clicking here.

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Will there be a blitz tournament?

Yes. The blitz tournament will take place on Sunday October 9 at 9:30pm. Details to be announced later.

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I aspire to be a FIDE tournament director and would like to participate in this event. How may I inquire as to the potential for my assistance?

The Millionaire Chess Open welcomes the assistance of volunteers seeking to qualify as tournament directors. If you would like to volunteer, please send an inquiry to contact@millionairechess.com.

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Do I have to become a member of the US Chess Federation (USCF) in order to play?

Yes, you must be a USCF member in order to play in the event. You may register now and update your membership information later. You may sign up to be a member of the USCF here. Foreign IM/GMs (non USA FIDE) are exempt from having to be US Chess members. However, they must obtain a US Chess ID to take part in the event.

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How many byes can I take in this tournament?

You may take a total of 3 byes, but only for rounds 1 thru 5. After round 5, you are allowed to forfeit a round and continue in the tournament, but you must state this to the tournament director an hour before the game is scheduled to begin. Note that players in the Open Section who take byes will not qualify for norms.

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How late can a player arrive for a game?

A player has 30 minutes to show up for a game. Any player who fails to show up or is not at the board ready to play within 30 minutes of the scheduled start of a round, as shown by the countdown clock at the stage, shall lose the game. The Chief Arbiter may, under emergency situations, approve exceptions. Players who fail to show up for a round will be withdrawn from the tournament unless they request, to the Chief Arbiter, not to be removed.

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What is the Dream Maker Satellite Series and how can I get more information about it?

Please read at the Dream Maker Satellite Series page of our website

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I am a Jewish chess player who observes the traditional law so the Saturday which is Shabbat. On
this day it is forbidden for us to write and press the clock. Can I still
play in MC 3.

Jewish players who, due to religious restrictions, are not allowed to write or use electronic devices during Shabbat, and whose games are therefore effected Friday, October 7th, 6:09pm (18:09) through Saturday, October 8th, 7:06pm (19:06) will be allowed the following accommodations.

10 minutes will be deducted from the base time for the player him/herself and score keeping will not be required. No adjustment is made to the opponent's clock. The player may furnish an assistant, who is acceptable to the Chief Arbiter or Assistant Chief Arbiter, to keep score for the player. The scoresheet should be visible to the player and arbiter and the player may call his/her opponent's flag-fall if necessary. He may not claim repetitions or 50-move rules draws. The assistant may make no comments or indications whatsoever during the game.

The player may furnish an assistant, who is acceptable to the Chief Arbiter or Assistant Chief Arbiter, who can press the clock of the player (and start the opponent's clock) at completion of the player's move. The assistant must be careful not to attempt to press the clock before the piece has been released and a normal interval has elapsed, as though the player himself were pressing the clock. This assistant must be the same person who keeps score for the player.Tournament staff is not responsible for supplying or offering assistance.

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