Next Steps: Rules Modernization Process Continues August 31, 2017 | FAR HILLS, N.J. By David Chmiel, USGA

Six months ago, the USGA and The R&A released a preview of golf’s proposed new Rules, which are due to go into effect on Jan. 1, 2019. These modernized Rules include a variety of significant changes covering situations such as removing loose impediments from penalty areas, taking a drop from an unplayable lie, repairing spike marks and looking for a lost ball, among others. Go through the photo gallery (below) to review some of the proposed changes:


As part of the Rules Modernization process, we encouraged golfers from all over the world to share their feedback regarding the proposed changes. Tens of thousands of people did just that, and now the USGA and R&A will take this feedback into the review period, with the goal of releasing the updated new Rules in spring 2018. Of course, just because the formal feedback period is ending doesn’t mean you can’t still reach out – the USGA welcomes golfers to ask a question or share their thoughts by calling 908-326-1850 or via email at

Rules Modernization is an ongoing journey, all leading toward an exciting new dawn for the game in 2019. If you need some perspective on how this next step in the history of the Rules of Golf has been implemented, click here. The USGA’s Rules page has everything you need to stay up to date.

David Chmiel is manager of member content for the USGA. Email him at