Rule 14 - Procedures for Ball: Marking, Lifting and Cleaning; Replacing on Spot; Dropping in Relief Area; Playing from Wrong Place

Purpose of Rule: Rule 14 covers when and how you may mark the spot of your ball at rest and lift and clean your ball and how to put it back into play so that your ball is played from the right place.

You may correct a mistake in using these procedures without penalty before your ball is played, but you get a penalty if you play the ball from the wrong place.

14.1  Marking, Lifting and Cleaning Ball

a. Spot of Ball to Be Lifted and Replaced Must Be Marked

Before lifting your ball under a Rule requiring it to be replacedReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play. on its original spot, you must markMark: To show the spot where a ball is at rest by either placing a ball-marker right behind or right next to the ball, or holding a club on the ground right behind or right next to the ball. the spot, which means to:

If you lift your ball without markingMark: To show the spot where a ball is at rest by either placing a ball-marker right behind or right next to the ball, or holding a club on the ground right behind or right next to the ball. its spot, markMark: To show the spot where a ball is at rest by either placing a ball-marker right behind or right next to the ball, or holding a club on the ground right behind or right next to the ball. its spot in a wrong way or make a strokeStroke: The forward movement of your club made to strike the ball. with a ball-markerBall-Marker: An artificial object when used to mark the spot of your ball to be lifted, such as a tee, a coin, an object made to be a ball-marker or another small piece of equipment. left in place, you get one penalty stroke.

When you lift your ball to take relief under a Rule, you are not required to markMark: To show the spot where a ball is at rest by either placing a ball-marker right behind or right next to the ball, or holding a club on the ground right behind or right next to the ball. the spot.

b. Who May Lift Ball

Your ball may be lifted under the Rules only by you or anyone you authorize, but you must give such authorization each time before your ball is lifted rather than giving it generally for the roundRound: 18 or fewer holes played in the order set by the Committee..

Exception – Your Caddie May Lift Your Ball on Putting Green Without Authorization.

c. Cleaning Lifted Ball

When you lift your ball from the putting greenPutting Green: The area on the hole you are playing that is specially prepared for putting, or the Committee has defined as the putting green (such as when a temporary green is used). it may always be cleaned. When you lift your ball from anywhere else it may always be cleaned except when you lift it:

If you clean a lifted ball when not allowed, you get one penalty stroke.

14.2  Replacing Ball on Spot

a. Original Ball Must Be Used

When your ball must be replacedReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play. after it was lifted or movedMoved: When your ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so)., your original ball must be used.

Exception – Another ball may be used when:

b. Who Must Replace Ball and How It Must Be Replaced

Your ball must be replacedReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play. under the Rules only by you or any other person who lifted your ball or caused it to moveMoved: When your ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so)..

If you play a ball that was replacedReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play. in a wrong way or replacedReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play. by someone not allowed to do so, you get one penalty stroke.

c. Spot Where Ball Is Replaced

Your ball must be replacedReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play. on its original spot (which if not known must be estimated) except when the Rules require you to replaceReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play. your ball on a different spot.

If your ball was at rest on, under or against any immovable obstructionImmovable Obstruction: Any obstruction that cannot be moved without unreasonable effort or without damaging the obstruction or the course, and otherwise does not meet the definition of a movable obstruction., integral objectIntegral Object: An artificial object defined by the Committee as part of the challenge of playing the course from which free relief is not allowed., boundary objectBoundary Object: Artificial objects defining or showing out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings, from which free relief is not allowed. or growing or attached natural object:

d. Where to Replace Ball When Original Lie Altered

If the lieLie: The spot on which your ball is at rest and any growing or attached natural object, immovable obstruction, integral object, or boundary object touching your ball or right next to it. Loose impediments and movable obstructions are not part of the lie of a ball. of your ball that has been lifted or movedMoved: When your ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so). is altered, you must replaceReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play. the ball in this way:

If you know that the original lieLie: The spot on which your ball is at rest and any growing or attached natural object, immovable obstruction, integral object, or boundary object touching your ball or right next to it. Loose impediments and movable obstructions are not part of the lie of a ball. was altered but do not know what the lieLie: The spot on which your ball is at rest and any growing or attached natural object, immovable obstruction, integral object, or boundary object touching your ball or right next to it. Loose impediments and movable obstructions are not part of the lie of a ball. was, you must estimate the original lieLie: The spot on which your ball is at rest and any growing or attached natural object, immovable obstruction, integral object, or boundary object touching your ball or right next to it. Loose impediments and movable obstructions are not part of the lie of a ball. and replaceReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play. your ball.

Exception – For Lies Altered While Play is Stopped and Ball Has Been Lifted, see Rule 5.7d.

e. What to Do If Replaced Ball Does Not Stay on Original Spot

If you try to replaceReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play. your ball but it does not stay on its original spot, you must try a second time.

If your ball again does not stay on that spot, you must replaceReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play. the ball by placing it on the nearest spot where it will stay at rest, but with these limits depending on where the original spot is located:

Penalty for Playing Incorrectly SubstitutedSubstitute: To change the ball you are using to play a hole by having another ball become your ball in play. Ball or Playing Ball from a Wrong PlaceWrong Place: Any place on the course other than where you are required or allowed to play your ball under the Rules. in Breach of Rule 14.2: General PenaltyGeneral Penalty: Loss of hole in match play or two penalty strokes in stroke play..

14.3  Dropping Ball in Relief Area

a. Original Ball or Another Ball May Be Used

You may use any ball each time you dropDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play. Each relief Rule identifies a specific relief area where your ball must be dropped and come to rest. or place a ball under this Rule.

b. Ball Must Be Dropped in Right Way

You must dropDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play. Each relief Rule identifies a specific relief area where your ball must be dropped and come to rest. a ball in the right way, which means all three of these things:

If your ball is droppedDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play. Each relief Rule identifies a specific relief area where your ball must be dropped and come to rest. in a wrong way in breach of one or more of these three requirements, you must dropDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play. Each relief Rule identifies a specific relief area where your ball must be dropped and come to rest. your ball again in the right way, and there is no limit to the number of times you must do so.

A ball droppedDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play. Each relief Rule identifies a specific relief area where your ball must be dropped and come to rest. in the wrong way does not count as one of the two dropsDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play. Each relief Rule identifies a specific relief area where your ball must be dropped and come to rest. required before your ball must be placed.

 For information on making a stroke at a ball dropped in a wrong way and whether one penalty stroke or the general penalty applies.

c. Ball Dropped in Right Way Must Come to Rest in Relief Area

This Rule applies only when a ball is droppedDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play. Each relief Rule identifies a specific relief area where your ball must be dropped and come to rest. in the right way under Rule 14.3b.

When You Have Completed Taking Relief. You have only completed taking relief when your ball droppedDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play. Each relief Rule identifies a specific relief area where your ball must be dropped and come to rest. in the right way comes to rest in the relief areaRelief Area: The area where you must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires you to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:.

It does not matter whether your ball, after hitting the ground, touches any person, equipmentEquipment: Anything used, worn, held or carried by you or your caddie. Objects used for the care of the course, such as rakes, are equipment only while they are being held or carried by you or your caddie. or other outside influenceOutside Influence: Any of these people or things that can affect what happens to your ball or equipment or to the course: before coming to rest:

In either case, there is no penalty to any player.

Exception – When Ball Dropped in Right Way is Deliberately Deflected or Stopped by Any Person

What to Do if Ball Dropped in Right Way Comes to Rest Outside Relief Area. You must dropDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play. Each relief Rule identifies a specific relief area where your ball must be dropped and come to rest. a ball in the right way a second time, and if that ball also comes to rest outside the relief areaRelief Area: The area where you must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires you to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:, you must then complete taking relief by:

d. What to Do if Ball Dropped in Right Way is Deliberately Deflected or Stopped by Person

 For information on what to do if you have dropped your ball in the right way but it has been deliberately deflected or stopped.

Penalty for Playing Ball from a Wrong PlaceWrong Place: Any place on the course other than where you are required or allowed to play your ball under the Rules. or Playing Ball that was Placed Instead of DroppedDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play. Each relief Rule identifies a specific relief area where your ball must be dropped and come to rest. in Breach of Rule 14.3: General PenaltyGeneral Penalty: Loss of hole in match play or two penalty strokes in stroke play..

14.4  When Your Ball is Back in Play after Your Original Ball Was Out of Play

 For information on when your ball is back in play, including when you substitute a ball but this is not allowed or you use a procedure that does not apply.

14.5  Correcting Mistake Made in Substituting, Replacing, Dropping or Placing Your Ball

You may lift your ball without penalty and correct your mistake before playing your ball:

 For more information on correcting a mistake before your ball is played.

14.6  Making Next Stroke from Where Previous Stroke Made

This Rule applies whenever you are required or allowed to make your next strokeStroke: The forward movement of your club made to strike the ball. from where a previous strokeStroke: The forward movement of your club made to strike the ball. was made (that is, when taking stroke-and-distanceStroke and Distance: The procedure and penalty when you take relief under Rules 17, 18 or 19 by playing a ball from where your previous stroke was made (see Rule 14.6). relief, or playing again after a strokeStroke: The forward movement of your club made to strike the ball. that is cancelled or otherwise does not count).

a. Previous Stroke Made from Teeing Area

Your original ball or another ball must be played from anywhere inside the teeing areaTeeing Area: The area you must play from in starting the hole you are playing. The teeing area is a rectangle that is two club-lengths deep where: (and may be teed).

b. Previous Stroke Made from General Area, Penalty Area or Bunker

Your original ball or another ball must be droppedDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play. Each relief Rule identifies a specific relief area where your ball must be dropped and come to rest. in this relief areaRelief Area: The area where you must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires you to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors::

c. Previous Stroke Made from Putting Green

Your original ball or another ball must be placed on the spot where your previous strokeStroke: The forward movement of your club made to strike the ball. was made (which if not known must be estimated).

Penalty for Playing Ball from a Wrong PlaceWrong Place: Any place on the course other than where you are required or allowed to play your ball under the Rules. in Breach of Rule 14.6: General PenaltyGeneral Penalty: Loss of hole in match play or two penalty strokes in stroke play..

14.7  Playing from Wrong Place

a. Place from Where Ball Must Be Played

After starting a hole you must make each strokeStroke: The forward movement of your club made to strike the ball. from where your ball comes to rest, except when the Rules require or allow you to play a ball from another place.

Penalty for Playing Ball from a Wrong PlaceWrong Place: Any place on the course other than where you are required or allowed to play your ball under the Rules. in Breach of Rule 14.7a: General PenaltyGeneral Penalty: Loss of hole in match play or two penalty strokes in stroke play..

b. How to Complete a Hole after Playing from Wrong Place in Stroke Play

If you have played from a wrong placeWrong Place: Any place on the course other than where you are required or allowed to play your ball under the Rules. but it is not a serious breachSerious Breach: In stroke play, when playing from a wrong place could give you a significant advantage compared to your stroke to be made from the right place., you get the general penaltyGeneral Penalty: Loss of hole in match play or two penalty strokes in stroke play. under Rule 14.7a and must continue play of the hole with the ball played from the wrong placeWrong Place: Any place on the course other than where you are required or allowed to play your ball under the Rules..

If you have played from a wrong placeWrong Place: Any place on the course other than where you are required or allowed to play your ball under the Rules. and it is a serious breachSerious Breach: In stroke play, when playing from a wrong place could give you a significant advantage compared to your stroke to be made from the right place., you must correct the mistake by playing out the hole from the right place. If you don’t correct the mistake, you are disqualified.

 For an explanation of what to do when your playing from a wrong place is a serious breach, or if you are not sure if it is a serious breach.