Forum: Protest Hearing Procedures

Emailed Protest submission

Chuck Bowers
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Umpire In Training
  • Judge In Training
In the age of COVID without the usual ability to deliver a protest in person to the Race committee. SI’s have been adding the request to submit them electronically. The question has arisen that an SI only had a generic email address like “protest@(insert club).org”. If a person submitting a protest sent it directly to members of the Race committee and not to the generic address would that protest be valid? The  person monitoring the generic address would have just forwarded it on to the same RC member that had received the direct email saving time thus allowing for a arbitration hearing to be held the same day instead of possibly days later. 

Questions:
1) Are electronic submissions to the ultimate recipients and not the generic address valid?

2) If the SI’s have 2 addresses and the word “and” between them valid if only sent to one of the 2?

3) If a physical submission was made to a RC member would it have been valid despite the SI statement to submit electronically?

4) If under pre/post COVID world can protests be delivered to any RC member at any place even if the SI’s state a location or person?

I have not been able to find any appeals or Cases that cover these questions. I’d appreciate your collective guidance for going forward. 

Thanks.
Created: 21-Feb-25 18:37

Comments

Chuck Bowers
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Umpire In Training
  • Judge In Training
0
Would any of the answers to these questions change if the SI’s had the words “shall be submitted”?
Created: 21-Feb-25 18:42
P
Angelo Guarino
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Judge
  • Fleet Measurer
0
FWIW .. Annapolis YC uses an "auto-responder" for their email filings.  I would encourage that because as sailors get used to getting an auto-reply, they condition themselves to look for it as confirmation that their delivery is successful. - Ang
Created: 21-Feb-25 18:56
P
Michael Butterfield
Nationality: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
  • International Race Officer
1
RRS 61.3 says protests shall be delivered to the race office.
Ant change to this would have to be noted as a change to a si to be valid.
If correctly changed and an e mail address is given then that is the only address that can be used.
Physical submission would not be possible if the rule had been changed.
Corvid does not change the rules, either in the RRS  or sailing instructions.
Created: 21-Feb-25 19:07
Chuck Bowers
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Umpire In Training
  • Judge In Training
0
Excellent point RC’s better make sure they correct note the modified 61.3 in the SI’s if they are doing electronic submissions. It might slip past a few. I’m sure there’s a few out there that have. 

So, the tradition of just submitting to any RC members would suffice if there is no defined “race office” or specific person noted in a PROPERLY MODIFIED SI? What would the “race office” be in a non landed club organized race?
Created: 21-Feb-25 20:28
P
Benjamin Harding
Nationality: Hong Kong
Certifications:
  • International Judge
1
RRS 61.3 says protests shall be delivered to the race office.
Ant change to this would have to be noted as a change to a si to be valid.

Can't email deliver a protest to the race office, too?

If an email (or electronic message) could  be read on a device in the race office (even if ultimately read elsewhere) by a person who is part of that race office, I would say the purpose of the sentence is fulfilled. No?

(e.g. I read that line generally.  e.g. your written protest must get to the race office (by any means) as opposed to having to knock on the door of a physical room, and hand over a piece of paper.)

So an email to joebloggs@gmail.com could be as good as an email to protests@abc-yacht-club.com

The problem is that Joe Bloggs has the sole burden of checking email, and may not want his email address public.  So maybe a club dedicated email address is best, which is set to forward to protest committee.

(Or just use racingrulesofsailing.org!)
Created: 21-Feb-25 22:51
John Culter
Nationality: Canada
Certifications:
  • National Race Officer
0
These are not RRS questions. These are plain English (or other language) questions. Unless nothing is said, protests go to the address(es) in the SIs. So no to Q1. No to Q2. No to Q3. No to Q4.  

Happily, protest committees always have the power to overrule the SIs, but why not just do what it says?
Created: 21-Feb-26 05:53
P
Angelo Guarino
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Judge
  • Fleet Measurer
0
John re: “..protest committees always have the power to overrule the SIs”

Cringe 😬 

PC’s are obligated to follow the rules.  The SI’s are a rule.  Unless there is a conflict between rules, or a rule like an SI breaks the RRS and the PC finds the SI is unenforceable, the PC can not overrule the SI.  
Created: 21-Feb-26 12:49
John Culter
Nationality: Canada
Certifications:
  • National Race Officer
0
Sorry.what I meant was the PC has pretty broad powers, in the face of either ambiguity or circumstances, to hear a protest, never mind the specific terms of the SIs. RRS 63.5 gives the PC the ability to consider all these filing and delivery questions. And PCs are preternaturally disposed toward conducting a hearing.
Created: 21-Feb-26 14:48
Greg Dargavel
Nationality: Canada
Certifications:
  • Club Race Officer
  • National Judge
0
"never mind the specific terms of the SIs."  Cringe 😬 at this one too.
Created: 21-Feb-28 13:49
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