One of the reasons Little League® has been successful for over seven decades is because of the rules established that all local leagues must follow, and the means in which the organization communicates those regulations to hometown programs. Whether it’s through social media, our targeted e-newsletters, Little League University, or the Little League Rulebooks, local leagues and parents within those leagues are well informed.
There are occasions, however, where leagues can request a temporary waiver, which may allow a rule to be adjusted. Many times, these waiver requests are initiated by parents, but it’s important to know that all formal requests must go through a step-by-step process, and must be submitted to Little League Baseball and Softball through the local league.
The most common waiver request involves leagues asking that a Little Leaguer® play in a league outside the previously established boundary. But waivers give parents the opportunity to seek an approved way for their child to have the best Little League experience possible, which could mean playing in the Minor Division as a 12-year-old or participating in regular season play for a league outside of their residence or school boundaries due to a hardship. Each waiver situation is unique, and Little League International uses this process as a way to work with the league to find a solution to provide every child the opportunity to have a meaningful Little League experience.
Here are some important points all parents and leagues should know about waivers:
- When a request is first brought up, the local league Board of Directors votes on whether or not to request the waiver.
- If the local league Board of Directors votes to request the waiver, the President writes a letter, detailing the request. Supporting documents should be attached, and forwarded to the local District Administrator.
- The District Administrator includes his/her written opinion, and forwards all documents to the Regional Director.
- The Regional Director will then present the situation to Little League International’s Charter Committee for action. The Charter Committee reviews all the information and uses past precedent to help guide its decision.
- The Charter Committee will alert the Regional Director of its decision, and the Regional Director will inform the District Administrator, who will then relay the decision to the local league.
- If a waiver is granted, the adjustment is only for the current season.
Since 1939, Little League’s rules and regulations have helped maintain a structure that allows local leagues to be successful, and for each player to benefit from the many positive Little League experiences. The waiver process, however, provides a level of flexibility, and the Charter Committee takes each request seriously, and makes judgments that are based on fairness for all involved. For more information, visit Little League’s Waiver of Rules and Regulations.