All officials who work sanctioned games must register with the USA Hockey Officiating Program. This involves the completion of a simple registration form and the payment of a nominal annual registration fee. After registering, the applicant must pass an open-book rules exam that is designed to cover the basic playing rules that are required at the lower levels. New officials will also have to obtain a black hockey helmet, official's sweater, black trousers and a whistle.
The Officiating Program conducts over 400 pre-season educational seminars for its officials during the fall months. These full-day seminars are mandatory for all officials registering with USA Hockey. All seminars are conducted free-of-charge to participants. The content of these educational seminars ranges from on-ice skills to rules interpretations to advanced theories of officiating. As experience is gained, officials advance to higher-level seminars.
For more information, please contact a supervisor of officials from your area. A directory can be found under the MHOA Board section.
The Officiating Program establishes a classification system for each individual, from the beginner to the highly-skilled official.
First-year officials must register as a Level 1 official and may officiate at the lower levels of hockey.
Note that USA Hockey does not establish minimum or maximum ages for officials. It is highly recommended that, regardless of level attained, officials do not work games of their own age classification or higher.
LEVEL 1: May officiate games at age levels 8 or Under thru 12 or Under (Mites through Pee Wees). Requirements:
LEVEL 2: May officiate at the 14 or Under (Bantam) and younger age classes after completion of the registration and testing process and after sufficient experience at Level 1.
LEVEL 3: The Level 3 official has proven his/her abilities over a period of years. Level 3 officials may referee games through the 17 or Under age classification (Midget) as well as Over 20 (Senior) and act as a Linesman for Junior hockey games (19 and under).
LEVEL 4: Level 4 officials may work all levels of USA Hockey. Applicants must have at least one year of experience at Level 3. Level 4 officials are eligible to work national-level events.
Officials who have been completely registered at Level 3 or Level 4 for three consecutive seasons can apply for Tenured Official status. Officials who achieve Tenured Status will receive a substantial reduction in annual Membership Registration requirements. For more details, click here.