Rule 19 - Unplayable Ball

Purpose of Rule: Rule 19 covers your relief options for an unplayable ball. This allows you to choose which option to use – normally with one penalty stroke – to get out of a difficult situation anywhere on the course (except in a penalty area).

19.1  You May Decide to Take Unplayable Ball Relief Anywhere Except Penalty Area

You are the only person who may decide to treat your ball as unplayable. Unplayable ball relief is allowed anywhere on the courseCourse: The entire area of play within the edge of any boundaries set by the Committee. The boundary edge extends both up above the ground and down below the ground., except in a penalty areaPenalty Area: An area from which relief with a one-stroke penalty is allowed if your ball comes to rest there..

19.2  Relief Options for Unplayable Ball in General Area or on Putting Green

You may take unplayable ball relief using one of the three options shown in Diagram 19.2, in each case adding one penalty stroke.

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 19.2: General PenaltyGeneral Penalty: Loss of hole in match play or two penalty strokes in stroke play..

19.3  Relief Options for Unplayable Ball in Bunker

When your ball is in a bunkerBunker: A specially prepared area of sand, which is often a hollow from which turf or soil has been removed. These are not part of a bunker:, you may take unplayable ball relief using one of the four options shown in Diagram 19.3.

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 19.3: General PenaltyGeneral Penalty: Loss of hole in match play or two penalty strokes in stroke play..