Rule Updates in Accordance with "Ontario Hockey Federation Return to Play Framework" Stage 3 Guidelines.
The following rule updates supersede any contradictory rules from the main section.
- All participants must sign a Release Waiver prior to the season start.
- All participants must self-screen for COVID-19 symptoms before each game by completing the COVID-19 Screening Form.
- The above waivers and forms will be sent to team representatives upon confirmation of registration.
- 4-on-4 (4 skaters, 1 goalie)
- Change of Possession: When a “change of possession” whistle occurs: All players of the opposing team must back off far enough to allow a member of the non-offending team (or the team whose goalie froze the puck) to begin a fresh play with the puck. If the players with control do not attempt a break out within ten seconds, the defending team may attack.
- There are no faceoffs throughout the game. The home team will begin the game with the puck in order to avoid as much contact as possible. The change of possession rule occurs in the following situations that would normally result in a faceoff:
- OUT OF PLAY – Dead puck and change of possession
- OFFSIDE - Dead puck and change of possession
- DELAYED OFF-SIDES - when players are offside, all must clear the offensive zone to the neutral zone before re-attacking in the offensive zone (facilitator will coach the offending team out of the zone).
- GOAL SCORED – Dead puck and change of possession. The team that scored must back up to centre
- GOALIE FREEZES PUCK – Dead puck and change of possession
- Icings: The determining line for an icing call with be a team’s defensive blue line. If the puck goes through the crease icing will still be called.
- Slap Shots: Slap shots are permitted in all divisions.
- Body Checking: Body Checking is NOT permitted in any division.
- Player Changes: Players will be eligible to change at any time during the game. Referees and players should work together to ensure as little time as possible is used for line changes.
- Non-Players on Bench: No non-players “coaches” will be permitted on a team’s bench area during the game.
- Spectators are not permitted.
- Minor Penalty: All minor penalties will result in a penalty shot. If the penalty is deemed to be reckless or aggressive, the offending player may be sent to the bench for the remainder of his/her shift. If the penalty is deemed accidental, the offending player may remain on the ice. (This judgment is at the discretion of the Referee).
- Double Minor Penalty: Penalty shot. Further discipline may result.
- Major Penalty: Immediate ejection and automatic removal from the league with no refund and no ability to replace the player on the roster. Further discipline may result.
- Misconduct Penalty: Immediate ejection and automatic removal from the league with no refund and no ability to replace the player on the roster. Further discipline may result.
- Game Misconduct: Immediate ejection and automatic removal from the league with no refund and no ability to replace the player on the roster. Further discipline may result.
- Gross Misconduct: Immediate ejection and automatic removal from the league with no refund and no ability to replace the player on the roster. Further discipline may result. There is zero tolerance for verbal or physical abuse towards referees, league officials, or Bell Sensplex, Richcraft Sensplex or Canadian Tire Centre staff.
- Match Penalty: Immediate ejection and automatic removal from the league with no refund and no ability to replace the player on the roster. Further discipline may result.
- Game Ejections: Referees may choose to eject a player from the game at any time. 10 minutes will be added to the penalized player’s PIM total. Further discipline may result.
- Upon ejection from the game, players must proceed directly to the dressing rooms. They may not remain to watch the game from behind the glass however, they may return to watch the game from the arena stands in street clothes. Failure to do so or if an ejected player causes any disturbance will result in an additional minimum ONE (1) game automatic suspension.
- Referees may eject any player whom they believe to be playing under the influence of any substance, at any time.
- 12 players including goaltender (per game)
- 12 player maximum roster size, including goalie and spares
- Both teams must start the game with a minimum of 5 players plus 1 goaltender
PART I – RULES & REGULATIONS
PART II – PENALTIES, SUSPENSIONS & BONDS
PART III - LEAGUE OPERATING PRACTICES
PART I – RULES & REGULATIONS
The CARHA Official Rule Book will apply unless otherwise stipulated in the rules listed below.
CAHL officials include both on-ice and off-ice officials and staff. Off-ice staff includes scorekeepers, conveners, CU Athletic staff, Ice House rink staff, and other persons that do not hold these titles, but are deemed by the League to be suitable to submit evidence regarding league matters if required.
All teams must designate a team representative and an alternate representative. The team Representative will submit team registration application and agree to the payment schedule outlined in the application form. Team representatives will be responsible for the completion of waiver forms and will ensure that the team roster is completed according to league guidelines.
The CAHL will communicate all league and team related matters through the team representative or the alternate representative. It is the team representative’s responsibility to forward all communications to their teammates.
All players must complete the online waiver form here:
It is the responsibility of the team rep to ensure that all of his/her players sign the team wavier and submit the online player waiver.
The CAHL provides insurance through CARHA Insurance which is built into the league fee. Teams must completely fill out the roster insurance form to be covered. A maximum of 18 players are covered per team, including spares and goalies.
Please see the League Terms & Conditions for the league payment policy.
7.1. Assigned dressing rooms may not be entered no more than 30 minutes before ice time and dressing rooms are to be clean and cleared within thirty (30) minutes after completion of each game.
7.2. Keys for the dressing rooms at Carleton Ice House must be obtained at the Welcome Desk in exchange for a set of car keys, or a form of identification.
7.3. Room assignments will be posted on the white board in the Ice House Lobby.
The consumption of alcohol in the dressing rooms, bleachers, parking lot, or other unlicensed areas is strictly prohibited. A violation of this policy may result in the removal of the team for which an offending player is registered. Smoking (including vaping) strictly prohibited anywhere inside the Carleton Ice House.
The Carleton Ice House provides first aid response. An AED (Defibrillator) is located on the south wall of the Ice House Lobby. League scorekeepers and Ice House Staff are trained in Standard or Emergency First Aid.
10.1. League officials may stop, cancel, or delay a game in the event of poor ice conditions or other concerns related to the safety of players. Rescheduling games will be at the discretion of the CAHL.
10.2. In the event that facilities become unavailable, or that start times may be delayed due to circumstances beyond the league’s control, or inadvertent double-booking; the CAHL may, at its discretion, delay a game by up to one hour.
10.3. In the event of cancellations due to poor weather conditions, rescheduling games will be at the discretion of the CAHL.
11.1. It is the responsibility of the team representative, or an appointed substitute, to ensure that player numbers are entered correctly on the game sheet, and that only players who are present are accounted for. If a player arrives after the start of the game it is the team’s responsibility to identify the player to the timekeeper so that they are registered for that game.
11.2. Requests to correct statistical data on the game sheet must be submitted by the team representative, or an appointed substitute, during the game, or following the conclusion of the game. Correcting the referee immediately after a goal usually assures the proper allocation of statistics.
12.1. Players must wear CSA approved hockey helmets and helmet hardware. Players without proper helmets, chinstraps, and helmet clips will not be permitted on the ice during a game. Absolutely no substitutions will be permitted.
12.2. To protect against possible serious facial injury the CAHL highly recommends the use of full-face shields; and when in use they must be CSA approved. The use of full-face shields is not mandatory; however players that choose to play without facial protection do so at their own risk.
12.2.A Intramural league players must wear full-face shields, either a cage or full visor.
12.3. Goaltenders are permitted to wear cat eye masks with the signature of a waiver. CSA approved cat eye masks are strongly recommended.
12.4. Failure to correct a piece of equipment immediately following a warning will automatically result in a minor penalty. The offending player may not return to play in that game, or any subsequent games, until the problem has been rectified and approved by a league official.
13.1. Teams shall have two (2) full matching set of jerseys with numbers for each player participating in the game. The goaltender will be allowed to wear a sweater that is the predominant colour of the team. The goaltender is also the only one on the ice to play without a number.
13.2. If there is a colour conflict the home team must immediately notify the referee, and the visiting team will be required to change jerseys.
14.1. A team must have at least 5 skaters plus a goalie at the 19:00 mark to begin a game. If a goalie is not ready at this time, the start of the game will be delayed until the goalie is on the ice and a minor penalty (DELAY OF GAME) assessed to the goalie.
14.2. If no goalie is ready and on the ice by the 12:00 minute mark of the first period, the game will be forfeited to the team that has enough players. A defaulted game will be recorded as a 1-0 and the team causing the default will be required to pay $150 fine. The fine must be presented to the League in cash/credit prior to the following game; otherwise the game will not commence. The team affected by the default will receive a cheque/credit for $125.00.
NOTE: If both teams elect to play a ‘friendly game’ after the default has been assigned, the referees must remain to officiate the game. League discipline will apply to the friendly game.
14.3. In the event of a goaltender injury/departure a team may either substitute one of their dressed players immediately, or may play with 6 skaters (none of whom will have goaltender privileges).
14.4. For Major penalties, Gross Misconducts, Game Misconducts, Misconducts, and Match penalties to a goalie, the goalie may be allowed to continue playing. All discipline will be assessed after the conclusion of the game. If the referees deem it inappropriate to allow the goalie to continue playing then the goalie will be ejected and a sixth player will be allowed to fill in for the goalie.
14.5. Goalies receiving three minor penalties in a game will not receive a game ejection; however, an automatic one-game suspension will be assessed for that team’s next game.
14.6. Any team who is unable to ice a minimum of three skaters and a goalie for any face-off other than the opening face-off (see rule 13.1) will forfeit the game.
15.1. Players must be at least 18 years of age in order to participate in the CAHL.
15.2. Players and goalies may play for more than one team in the CAHL. However, no player may be registered on more than one team in the same division.
15.3. Players cannot spare in the same division in which they are registered unless they are approved by their opponent and league officials. Regardless of approval, a game day roster may not be topped up to more than eight skaters with the use of same division spares. During the playoffs, no player may spare in the same division in which they are registered.
15.4. To be eligible to participate during the playoffs, players must have played a minimum of seven regular season games (winter) and five regular season games (summer) with the team they wish to play for in the playoffs.
15.5. To be eligible to participate during the playoffs, goalies must play a minimum of four regular season games (winter) and three regular season games (summer). If a team’s full-time goalie has a legitimate reason for not being available to play a playoff game the team may use a spare goalie. However, the spare goalie must be approved by the CAHL Convener a minimum of 48 hours prior to the game.
15.6. Over 35 All players must be over 35, with the exception of 2 players 30-34 allowed per team. Goalies are permitted to fall outside of the divisional age range.
15.7. The CAHL reserves the right to refuse any player entrance into the league.
15.8. The CAHL reserves the right to move any team with dominant players to a different division, or require that dominant players be replaced.
15.9. The CAHL reserves the right to default a game if a team brings out a spare that is of an unreasonably and noticeably higher skill level than the division standard.
15.10. Current NHL and AHL players are not permitted to play.
The team representative, or a substitute in the representative’s absence, is responsible for the conduct of the team’s fans and coaches.
Should the conduct of the fans or the coaches be deemed inappropriate, the on or off-ice officials may tell the team representative to ask them to cease their inappropriate conduct, and/or ask them to leave the arena.
Unsportsmanlike penalties and suspensions will be assessed in the event that the inappropriate conduct should continue.
Game officials shall be on the ice as soon as the zamboni is off and shall remain on the ice until both teams have left the ice surface.
18.1. The game clock will start at the 26:00-minute mark when the Zamboni is off the ice and the rink doors are closed.
WARM-UP: 3 minutes - whistle is blown at 23:30 minute mark
1st PERIOD: 23 minutes
2nd PERIOD: 22 minutes
18.2. The referee has the discretion to stop the clock due to injury, ice problems, rule explanations, etc.
18.3. Game time will stop during a penalty shot and will resume after the shot has been taken.
18.4. Stop time will take effect during the last two minutes of the last period when the score differential is one goal or less.
18.5. Refer to rule 22 regarding changing players during the last 2 minutes of the game
19.1. Body checking is not allowed in any division.
19.2. Slapshots are permitted in all divisions.
20.1. The icing marker will be the defensive blue line, not the red line.
20.2. Icing will be called even if the puck travels through the goal crease.
20.3. Two-line passes are legal; the red line will NOT be in play.
There are no time-outs allotted in any games.
Players may change at any time. Delay of game penalties will be issued should the official rule that a team is deliberately delaying the game with a line change.
PART II – PENALTIES, SUSPENSIONS & BONDS
6 minutes (counts as 2 penalties)
7 minutes (counts as 2 penalties)
Ejection (if in last 10 minutes, 1 game suspension)
Immediate Ejection + Disciplinary Review
7 minutes + Immediate Ejection + Minimum 3 game suspension
Rather than penalize the team, referees may issue game ejections for players. Normally, this type of penalty will not result in an additional suspension. However, it will be recorded, and should it become a common occurrence, a suspension may result.
25.A. A minor penalty shall NOT be assessed to goalies if they clear the puck over the glass.
25.1. The first face-off of a power play will be placed in the defending zone of the team that committed the penalty, unless:
- During the period of the delayed penalty, the team not being penalized contacts the puck with a high stick;
- Ices the puck;
- When the attacking team's defense enter the outer edge of the end face-off circle during an altercation, gathering or “scrum." Only then will the face-off be placed in the neutral zone nearest the defending blue line of the team causing the stoppage.
25.2 A minor penalty will be assessed to a player who fails to close the penalty box door after serving a penalty.
25.3. If a player enters the crease area before the puck and a goal is scored, the goal will be disallowed and a face-off will take place in the neutral zone.
25.4. Players must remain off the ice surface until the zamboni has left and the doors are closed. Failure to do so may result in a minor penalty.
25.5. Contact with the puck with the stick above shoulder height is prohibited. When this occurs, play shall be stopped immediately, and a face-off will take place in the offending team’s defensive zone.
NOTE: The crossbar is not an applicable point of reference for high sticking. That is an NHL rule.
25.6. Verbal abuse of on-ice officials, off-ice league officials, and opponents will not be tolerated. Suspensions may be levied in cases where abusive, offensive, derogatory language, racial slurs, and/or obscene gestures are directed toward officials and opponents.
25.7. Physical abuse of on-ice or off-ice officials will result in a minimum 1 game suspension and could result in a ban from the league.
25.8. Any contact to an opponent’s head/neck area will result in a double-minor penalty (head contact); reviewable by league for suspensions.
25.9. All actions, penalized or otherwise, both on and off the ice are subject to league discipline.
25.10. Disciplinary Committee: Any players receiving Majors, Misconducts, Game & Gross Misconducts, Game Ejections and Match penalties will have their actions reviewed by the disciplinary committee. The committee may assess additional suspensions, or request bonds depending upon the penalty and the players’ history. Referee write-ups are mandatory for these penalties.
25.11. Major Penalties: Will all be accompanied by a Game Misconduct.
25.12. Double Minor Penalties: Count as two penalties under the game ejection rule for three penalties in one game (see rule 25.8).
25.13. Misconducts During the Last 10 minutes of a Game: May result in a minimum one game suspension. The same applies for misconducts immediately following a game.
25.14. Ejected Players: Players ejected from a game for any reason whatsoever must immediately proceed to their respective dressing rooms. The Player may return to the stands to watch the game in street clothes only.
If the individual fails to follow this rule or causes any disturbance whatsoever, especially on preventing the game from continuing its regular flow, the player may be subject to additional disciplinary action.
25.15. Three Penalties in a Game: Any player receiving three minor penalties during the same game will be ejected. Goalies may be allowed to continue playing (see rule 13.4). Any player being ejected for three minors for the third time may be subject to disciplinary action by the league committee.
25.16. Delayed Penalties: All delayed penalties will be recorded on the official CAHL game sheet. If an opposing team scores on the delayed call, the individual(s) who was to be assessed the delayed penalty will not serve the penalty (MINORS ONLY), but will have the penalty(s) recorded and counted towards the individual’s maximum allowable number of minor penalties in one game.
25.17. Serving Another Player’s Penalty: No player may serve another team member’s penalty except in the following situations:
- A penalty assessed to the goalie (player must be on the ice at the time of the infraction).
- A penalty assessed to a player having been ejected from the game.
- Any minor penalty assessed to a player having to leave the game because of an injury.
- For any Misconduct penalty resulting in an ejection or injury to that player, no other player is required to serve this penalty.
NOTE: Players may rotate from the bench to the penalty box when serving an ejected player’s penalty, but there has to be one player in the penalty box when the penalty expires, otherwise the team will continue to play short-handed until the next whistle.
26.1. Personal Penalty Bond: Any player amassing the following penalty totals will be subject to the following fines and suspensions:
Winter Season (Including playoffs)
- 60 PIMS - 1 game suspension
- 90 PIMS – 2 game suspension & $200 player bond
- 110 PIMS – 5 game suspension and meeting with league Summer Season (Including playoffs)
- 55 PIMS - 1 game suspension
- 85 PIMS – 2 game suspension & $200 player bond
- 105 PIMS - 5 game suspension and meeting with league
26.2. Personal Performance Bond:
Individual players may have to post personal performance bonds to continue to play in the CAHL. Performance bonds are a minimum $200 in cash, which the player in question must pay prior to resuming league play. The performance bond is the final warning for a player. If a player is suspended while on a performance bond they will lose the bond and their playing privileges in the CAHL for at least the remainder of the season. Reasons for performance bonds include:
- Severe infraction of the rules (not serious enough to warrant a complete season suspension). • ii) Repeated disregard for the rules and safety of players, referees, or league officials.
- Player has amassed over 50 minutes in penalties in the past season in the CAHL.
- Player has received a severe suspension from other Adult Hockey Leagues.
27.1 Suspension Overview: CAHL players may be suspended for any injurious, dangerous or objectionable on or off-ice offenses. This includes offences that have gone unnoticed by officials, were not called, or were only penalized as a minor penalty at the time of the infraction.
27.2. Any altercation in the hallway may result in a suspension, including verbal abuse.
27.3. Playing Under Suspension: Unless otherwise stipulated by the CAHL, suspended players may not play with other CAHL teams for whom they are registered or for whom they wish to spare until the suspension has been fully served with the original team. Any team that is found to be using a player who is under suspension, an illegal player, or a player using an alias, will be assessed the following penalties:
- The final score of the game will be recorded as ‘0’ for the team using the illegal player. 3-0 will be the default score if the margin of victory is less than 3 goals in favour of the non-offending team.
- The illegal player will have an additional 5 game suspension
- Teams using suspended/illegal players may also have their team representative PLUS their top scorer (reps will not count as a top scorer) suspended for that team’s next game.
27.4. Sparing While Under Suspension: A suspended player may not spare for any team until the suspension with the original team has been served.
27.5. Team representatives will be held responsible for spare players’ actions. A suspension to a spare player may result in an additional suspension to the team representative.
27.6. Suspended players may watch the game from the stands only. They may not watch the game from the bench or at ice level. See Rule 25.14.
27.7. Misconducts in the last 10 minutes of the 2nd period may result in an automatic 1 game suspension.
Fighting may result in a five game suspension, with the instigator/aggressor receiving a minimum of one additional game. Any player taking physical advantage of an unwilling and non-punching opponent may be permanently banned from the CAHL. League officials will not tolerate intimidation and revenge on the ice.
NOTE: The gloves do not have to be off for an altercation to be deemed a fight.
PART III - LEAGUE OPERATING PRACTICES
All teams are eligible for the round-robin portion of the playoffs. The season is over for teams that do not advance past the round-robin portion of the playoffs. The division formats are based on the number of teams per division. As the match-ups become available the schedule will be posted on the playoff website which is linked through the main site.
33.1. All teams qualify for the playoffs
33.2. Each non-round robin game will be single elimination
33.3. Games will be scheduled according to the seeding of the final regular season standings. Standings include all games played during the season (22/21 games for winter, 15/14 games for summer)
33.4. In the event two or more teams are tied in total points, the following process will be used to determine playoff order:
- Best winning percentage
- Most wins
- Goal Differential (Goals for minus Goals against)
- Fewest Goals Allowed
- Most goals scored (Goals For)
- Fewest penalties (PIMs)
- If a further tiebreaker is still required after the above, a flip of the coin will decide the winner
33.4.A. The following tiebreaking process will be used if two or more teams are tied AFTER the playoff Round Robin.
- Round Robin Goal differential (Goals for minus Goals against) • ii) Round Roin Fewest Goals Allowed
- Round Robin Most goals scored (Goals For)
- Regular Season Standings
- Coin Flip
33.5 The division formats are based on the number of teams per division.
33.6. As the match-ups become available, the schedule will be posted on the playoff website.
33.7. Only Semi-Final and Final games require a winner (Round Robin games may end in a tie with 1 point awarded for each team). If the score is tied at the end of regulation, a five minute, sudden death, 4-on-4 overtime period will take place, followed immediately by a three-person shoot-out.
33.8. Stop time will take effect if the game remains tied during the last minute of the overtime period.
33.9. If the game still is tied, a shootout will take place which three players will shoot for each team.
33.10. If the game is still tied after three shooters, a sudden death shoot-out will ensue. Teams may use any shooter of their choice after the first three shooters, except for players who fall into rule 33.11 (below).
33.11. A player in the penalty box at the end of overtime or an ejected player will not be permitted to take part in the shoot-out.
34.1. The CAHL reserves the right to make any emergency changes and/or additions/deletions to the above rules. Rule changes will be posted on the website and/or will be e-mailed to team representatives before the change is enacted.
34.2. The Carleton Adult Hockey League has been designed to provide non-contact hockey at the recreational level. Disrespect towards game and administrative officials, and/or injurious actions by players will not be tolerated. Violation of the previous will be just cause for ejection from the CAHL without refund of fees paid.