Non-Sanctioned Hockey Policy

Hockey Alberta: Non-Sanctioned Hockey Policy


Working with Hockey Canada and our colleagues within the other Provincial Amateur Hockey organizations, Hockey Alberta is committed to offering the best development programs in the world. Collectively we have invested significant resources into the development of officials, coaches, administrators and players countrywide. We have a committed strategy toward a cohesive longterm athlete development model and we feel our programs are second to none in sport.

Despite, or perhaps because of, our success in delivering quality programming, other organizations operating outside our structure form leagues, tournaments and games from time to time that offer various levels of amateur hockey programming. These “non-sanctioned” organizations do not support the development of Hockey Alberta or the programs of our Members. Further, they operate with limited, or no consideration to the impact of their programs on our sanctioned minor, minor female, junior, or senior hockey, and our officiating, coaching or administrator development. These Non-Sanctioned Leagues choose instead, in many instances, to utilize resources already developed by Hockey Canada and its Members.

Because Non-Sanctioned Games operate outside of our structure, Hockey Alberta has no way of ensuring that those Leagues implement many of the fundamental safeguards inherent in Hockey Canada sanctioned programs. As a result, those Leagues may not be using the same Playing Rules that Hockey Canada has implemented to protect player safety and may not provide adequate insurance for their participants. We also cannot ensure that the quality of play in these Leagues matches the level advertised.

Hockey Alberta respects the right of every individual to choose between participating in a Hockey Alberta sanctioned program or a Non-Sanctioned league at the beginning of each hockey season. Every individual who makes the choice to participate in a Non-Sanctioned league, however, must understand the ramifications of that choice, as described in greater detail in Section III of this policy.



  • “Cut-Off Date” means September 10, 2021.
  • “Member Organization” means any MHA, Recreational Hockey Program, Accredited School, Para Hockey Program, Junior/ Senior Hockey League, etc. that is approved and registered with Hockey Alberta.
  • “Non-Sanctioned League” includes any amateur hockey league that operates in Canada outside the auspices/sanctioning of Hockey Canada. This currently does not include summer hockey leagues/teams, adult recreational hockey leagues/teams, high school hockey, and/or hockey schools.
  • “Participate” means to engage, knowingly or otherwise, in an activity. Such activity includes, without limitation, playing, managing, coaching, officiating, or acting as a trainer.
  • “Participation” in a Non-Sanctioned Game will be considered to have occurred if the individual takes part in one game (including an exhibition, tournament, league or playoff game) after the Cut-Off Date.



Hockey Alberta will implement the Hockey Canada Non-Sanctioned League Policy and in addition has strengthened the application of that policy as set out below.

Any individual who Participates in a Non-Sanctioned league is subject to the following consequences:

  • Any individual who Participates in a Non-Sanctioned League game after the Cut-Off Date will
  • lose all privileges with Hockey Alberta for the remainder of that season, and, subject to paragraph (3) below, may only apply for the reinstatement of those privileges after the end of that season.
  • Notwithstanding the consequences listed above, anyone who participates in a Non-Sanctioned League game after the Cut-Off Date is entitled to seek early reinstatement of their privileges within Hockey Alberta by applying for reinstatement, which may grant early reinstatement if it is satisfied that special circumstances exist.
  • The consequences described in this section of this policy will remain in effect even if the Non-Sanctioned League or team folds, or the Participant is released, suspended or fired from that League or team.


Hockey Alberta will implement the Hockey Canada Non-Sanctioned League Policy and in addition has strengthened the application of that policy as set out below.

Any Member organization which supports such a Non-Sanctioned League, is subject to the following consequences:

  • Hockey Alberta will make every effort to ensure that its Member organizations (MHA’s, Recreational Hockey Programs, Accredited Schools, Para Hockey Programs, Junior/ Senior Hockey Leagues, etc.) and their representatives are not supporting Non-Sanctioned Leagues in any manner whatsoever.
  • For greater certainty, “supporting” includes, but is not limited to, assisting a Non-Sanctioned League directly or indirectly through advertisement, promotion, ticket sales, volunteer activities, assigning Officials, sharing resources or enabling Teams to participate in Hockey Canada sanctioned activities.
  • We will withhold tournament sanctions and will preclude Member organizations from benefitting from any Hockey Alberta sanctioned event by whatever means necessary, including the withdrawal of any such event from any community within the geographic boundaries of that association if need be to stress this point.


Hockey Alberta will only accept players who are registered with a member MHA or Accredited School into our High-Performance Programs and Development Camps (ie: Prospects Cup, Alberta Challenge, Alberta Winter Games, Alberta Cup, Arctic Winter Games, National Aboriginal Hockey Championships, etc.).

Access to these programs is a privilege that is offered to and reserved for the member participants of Hockey Alberta.

Hockey Alberta reserves the right to make choices regarding the coaches that we deem to be the best fit within our high-performance and grassroots development programs. Those participating in and/or supporting non-sanctioned programs could be perceived to pose a conflict and therefore may not be considered for Hockey Alberta programs or committees.



An Official who works in a non-sanctioned program WILL NOT:

  • have access to the Hockey Canada insurance program for any injuries that may occur as a result of that participation;
  • have access to the Hockey Alberta Match Penalty on Official process for any infractions that may occur during the non-sanctioned activity;
  • be eligible to be selected by Hockey Alberta or Hockey Canada for any Regional, National or International assignments; and/or
  • be eligible to participate as an official in Hockey Alberta’s Officiating Development Programs such as the Alberta Cup and Development Camp(s);
  • be eligible to act in the capacity of Officials Committee member and/or a Clinic Instructor.

Hockey Alberta reserves the right to make choices regarding the officials and/or officials administrators that we deem to be the best fit for our programs. Those participating in and/or supporting non-sanctioned programs could be perceived to pose a conflict and therefore may not be considered for assignments within sanctioned programs, events or committees.

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