Article 12.9.4 of FIDE Laws of Chess: increasing the points scored in the game by the opponent to the maximum available for that game

Can you give an example of a rule violation penalized under 12.9.4?

  • See answer below, but it is worth pointing out that I never heard of a practical case where this rule ever was applied, let alone that I hardly could construct a case where this rule would be the most appropriate penalty. (And you won't make friends with the tournament director by serving Swiss a 1/2-1 :-) Oct 7, 2021 at 8:36

1 Answer 1


It is perhaps worth starting by saying that Article 12.9 -

12.9 Options available to the arbiter concerning penalties:

applies to "things which the arbiter wants to apply a penalty for" and so includes other things as well as rule violations.

That said, according to Article 11.6:

11.6 Infraction of any part of Articles 11.1 – 11.5 shall lead to penalties in accordance with Article 12.9.

It is also worth saying that the penalties outlined in 12.9.1 through 12.9.9 are not exclusive. So that, for instance, a player caught cheating is likely to have penalties 12.9.4 (opponent scores maximum), 12.9.5 (player's score reduced, almost certainly to zero) and 12.9.9 (expulsion from the competition) all applied.

Use of physical violence by a player is also likely to result in multiple penalties.

As to particular FIDE rules which would result in such penalties it is worth noting that there is no specific "no cheating" rule! Although

11.3.1 During play the players are forbidden to use any notes, sources of information or advice, or analyse any game on another chessboard.

and During a game, a player is forbidden to have any electronic device not specifically approved by the arbiter in the playing venue.

both describe particular methods of cheating.

Physical violence would be an extreme violation of:

11.5 It is forbidden to distract or annoy the opponent in any manner whatsoever.

and quite possibly:

11.1 The players shall take no action that will bring the game of chess into disrepute

  • I have a question regarding rule 11.3.1: How do they treat that when a game is adjurned? In the hotel room I could run all the analysis I want or check on other boards.(sorry - I take my knowledge about tournaments only from the queen's gambit, so if that doesn't happen anymore, ignore my question)
    – Christian
    Oct 7, 2021 at 5:39
  • 1
    @Christian Adjournments are no longer used, you can find your answer here: chess.stackexchange.com/questions/27627/…
    – Minot
    Oct 7, 2021 at 5:55
  • @Minot thank you very much. That explains a lot.
    – Christian
    Oct 7, 2021 at 6:06
  • As I understand it adjournments are still possible in some competitions but rare - see e.g. londonchess.org.uk/main.php and the rules for the competition, in particular section 6.
    – Ian Bush
    Oct 7, 2021 at 7:34

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