MC3 Tournament policies

RATING RULES OVERALL MISSION: To provide for the highest quality chess tournament that is orderly and enjoyable for all, one that creates a playing atmosphere which allows the players to concentrate without distraction and that places a high premium on preventing cheating.


There will be a rule of silence in the playing hall.
No food or opening of food wrappings allowed at the tables. No alcoholic beverages will be allowed in the tournament room.
Players must adjourn to skittles rooms immediately after the game is completed. No post mortems in playing hall.


  • No player may use or wear any type of electronic or digital device, phone, blackberry, PDA, computer, ear-piece, headset, communications device, microphone, speaker or the like while playing without the expressed permission of a Tournament Director (doctors on call included). The penalty for such use is forfeiture of the round, and an immediate investigation into the nature of the use will be done to determine if dismissal from the tournament is warranted.
  • Players should prepare themselves to be scanned by security upon entering the playing area. This process may lead to mild lines at the beginning of every round, so plan to arrive at the games 15 minutes in advance. Absolutely no one will be allowed in without being scanned by security. There will be a cell phone check-in station near the security scanners. However, it is highly recommended that players leave their cell phones in their hotel rooms if possible.
  • A player who needs to make a call during play should see a TD (Tournament Director) and request permission. The call must be made in the presence of a TD.
  • Players are not allowed to leave the playing area without permission from a TD.
  • A player who anticipates possibly receiving an emergency call during play should notify a TD at least an hour in advance and will be provided with an alternate number for the caller.
  • Players must submit to a search for electronic devices if requested by the Chief Tournament Director. Refusal to cooperate with a search request warrants forfeiture of game and ejection from the tournament, with no refund. Searches will only be initiated if there is compelling evidence of cheating. A simple accusation by another person does not constitute compelling evidence.
  • If there is clear and indisputable evidence of cheating of any kind, electronic or otherwise, the player will be forfeited from the tournament. No refunds will be given, and the player will be banned from all future Millionaire Chess events.
  • No one is allowed to accuse a player of cheating without actual evidence. The security detail, overhead cameras, extra TD and event staff, and other (undisclosed) methods are in place to ensure that proper tournament etiquette is being met at all times.
  • Players whose games have finished are also not allowed to use or possess cell phones or other electronic devices in the playing area or bathrooms. The penalty is at the TD’s discretion after an investigation has been conducted and may include forfeiture of the round.
  • Digital Cameras are permitted 30 minutes before the start of every round for a period of 10 minutes so as to allow participants to capture their experience at the Millionaire Chess Open.  


To minimize sandbagging, the tournament uses each player’s highest post-event rating between January 1, 2015 and August 31, 2016. The Tournament Director reserves the right to use CCA ratings, which are fair assessments based on Continental Chess Tournaments held by premier organizer Bill Goichberg over the last 40 years.     

The chief organizer and chief arbiter reserve the right to use a player’s active rating in one rating system over a stale rating in a different rating system, regardless of the difference between the two ratings. These situations were considered on their individual merits.


Up to three (3) 1/2-point Byes allowed in Rounds 1 – 5 only if requested before the start of play on October 6, 2016. Zero-point byes may be requested for any round. The Chief Arbiter may make exceptions for emergency reasons.


The Millionaire Chess Open will provide carbonless duplicate scoresheets for every game of every round. Players will be required to use these scoresheets only.

The scoresheet should have the header information completely filled out at the start of the game. At the end of the game, the result of the game should be clearly marked at the bottom of the scoresheet, and each player must secure both his signature and his opponent’s signature on his scoresheet. Each player must then submit the top (original) copy, retaining the bottom copy for their records and review.
If a player requires more than one scoresheet for a game, the player may contact a tournament director, who will supply additional scoresheets as needed.


Spectators must check in their cell phones at the cell phone check-in station.
Spectators will be allowed only in a specially cordoned off area running down the middle of the tournament room. No spectators will be allowed inside the area where players are competing.
Spectators are not allowed to speak to players, or vice versa, while games are in progress outside of the presence of a tournament official.
Spectators are not allowed to open beverages in the playing area.
The tournament staff retains the right to expel from the tournament room any spectator who does not comply with the rules or is disturbing the tournament in any way.


Players are not allowed to talk to spectators or other players during tournament play.
Boorish, uncouth, rude, and inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated. The organizers reserve the right to deny entry into our tournament.


In the interest of presenting the best possible image of chess to the public, the organizers strongly request that players dress in casual business attire at a minimum (slacks, shirt, and jacket). For those choosing not to do so for the entire tournament, then we ask that they wear a collared shirt (polo shirts allowed). We strongly urge players not to wear tank tops, shorts, or old T-shirts while playing. We wish players to be as comfortable as possible while still presenting a proper face to the public.


The No Early Draw Rule implemented in the Open section of the Millionaire Chess Open is based on a simple concept: fans wish to see real chess games. We, the organizers, believe that the true spirit of chess competition is well served when this principle is adhered to. Anything else makes a travesty of our wonderful game, and completely disrespects the viewing public. With those considerations in mind, we require that players sign off on the following rules in order to play in this event. Our promise is that these dictums will be applied in a fair and consistent manner, with the stamp of the leadership of Millionaire Chess as well as the many decades of experience of our tournament directing staff.
The organizers understand that there are situations that occur in which a draw has to be agreed to before move 30. These situations are rare but they do occur, and if we determine that a serious effort was made in playing the game, we do have the authority to allow a draw. We will not be forcing a player to walk into checkmate or lose a pawn to avoid a draw. However understand that these situations are very rare, and should not occur often.
The penalties for breaking the following rules may be:
Forfeiture of game
Offending player will be ineligible to win a prize
Players may be banned from playing in future events


The Open section will play according to the FIDE rules of Chess. The other sections will play according to the USCF rules.
No game in the Open Section of the Millionaire Chess Open may be agreed drawn by the two players prior to Black having completed his/her 30th move.
If there is a situation where the two players believe that a draw must be agreed to, then only the player who wishes to accept the draw may stop clocks and request the assistance of the tournament director. The TD will then objectively decide whether or not it is appropriate to agree to a draw or whether the players must play on until move 30.
Having an “objectively” drawn or equal position does NOT allow you to agree to a draw. If this is the case, then you must play until at least move 30.
If the TD is unable to decide if a given situation clearly breaks the rules, he/she will consult with the chief organizer (GM Maurice Ashley) or a qualified representative. The decision reached by this body will be final.
In situations where an infraction is strongly suspected but impossible to penalize, the organizers reserve the right to prevent the players from playing in the future events. This decision is subject to written appeal.

The organizers wish to express our appreciation for players agreeing and accepting these rules. Understand that we are not asking players to go all out to win and thereby risk losing. Our sole intention is to respect our sponsor, fans and chess by attempting to get rid of early agreed draws. It is our privileged intention to make the event as enjoyable and as rewarding an experience as much as possible for all the participants as well as for the thousands of fans who will be following the event. Your participation establishes your full understanding of these rules and your agreement to comply with them in play and in spirit.
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.


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 will be taking pictures of every player for use in creating a Player Profile 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.