All matches played under the auspices of the MQL must conform to the following rules: [As of Spring 2018 Rules are under review]
- The Leagues shall be known as "The Merseyside Quiz Leagues" and shall be divided into as many Leagues as the Council deem necessary.
- A Council shall be appointed annually consisting of the following members: Chairman, Deputy Chairman, General Secretary, Assistant General Secretary and Treasurer, together with one committee member from each constituent league plus a further committee member for each of ten teams within the constituent league
- The Council shall have the power to arrange and settle all matters relating to the Leagues.
- The Council may at any time fill any vacancies that may occur among the Officers or Council.
- Council meetings shall be held as necessary and at least once every four months. The Council shall also call an Annual General Meeting at the end of each season, which will consider all amendments to Rules and other matters.
- Proposals for the AGM be submitted to the General Secretary no later than 28 days before the advertised date of the AGM.
- All meetings shall close or stand adjourned at 9:30 p.m.
- League matches must be played on a Monday or a Tuesday and teams must select which shall be their Home Match night upon the Registration form.
- To initiate the playing season, the Council have set June 15th or any date decided by the Local Council or Committee in any season as a Final Registration Date, and all teams must by that date submit:Local Council/Committees are empowered to refuse registration to teams not fulfilling ALL the above conditions by the Registration Date.
THIS RULE WILL BE STRICTLY ADHERED TO
- A fully completed Registration Form as issued by the Council
- A remittance to cover the main entrance fee as set by the Annual General Meeting of the MQL and a local fee appropriate to the individual Leagues.
- At least one set of questions (from all teams other than those in their first season)
- Extra Fixture Lists may be purchased at the price fixed by the Council, payment being included with the Remittance as per Rule 9(b).
- No player may play for more than one team in any one season without first obtaining the permission of the Council of the constituent league or leagues directly concerned; the player has the right of appeal to the Council of the MQL should the request for a transfer be refused.
This rule applies to all competitions played under the auspices of the MQL
- The MQL Council shall fix a playing season of 26 weeks, during which areas will be able to play league games to questions provided by the MQL Areas wishing to play games outside these parameters will be responsible for arranging question sets for the said games.
- Each constituent League is required to forward nine question sets to the distributors by 31st July and a further nine by the 31st October. Questions for matches will not be sent to Leagues who fail to meet the deadlines until the commitment has been met, and League Secretaries will be notified in writing immediately after the above dates.
- Costs of handbooks to be borne by the local leagues.
- MQL Council has discretion to amend the playing rules for competitions in order to best accommodate the number of teams entering.
- A quorum at a MQL Council meeting be three officers plus three council members to represent at least three areas in total.
- A quorum at an AGM be three officers plus representatives of at least five teams.
- Sets of questions will be provided by the Council and only these shall be used in league matches, unless the two captains agree otherwise.
- Questions will be issued to the Home Team in sealed envelopes, the sealing to consist of sellotape covering over both end flaps and official stamp on centre join, properly sealed. These envelopes must be opened by the Question Person in the presence of the two captains before the match begins.
- Teams shall consist of not more than four players; any missing players' questions will be for team bonus points. Players must remain in the same position for the duration of the match. The Home Team shall be responsible for providing Question Person, Timekeepers and Scorer for each Match, except where other arrangements exist in any particular League. Any arrivals after the start of a Match cannot join the team.
- A Match shall consist of 32 Questions to each Team, and the winner shall be the team securing the most points.
- All matches to start at 8:45 p.m. with an allowance of 15 minutes. Should matches be delayed more than this 15 minutes the non-offending team have the right to claim the match.
- Visiting teams have the option of answering first or second in the League games. In the Cup, President's Trophy and President's Shield matches, the home captain will toss a coin and ask the visiting captain to call to decide the order of answering. In all games the order of answering shall change after round four.
- Each constituent League shall be permitted to decide which match rules apply to League matches and internal Cup competitions, even to the extent of different rules applying to different divisions within the League. Standard match rules shall apply to all matches between teams from different constituent Leagues except for competitions outside the jurisdiction of the Merseyside Quiz League.
The Question Person will adjudicate strictly in accordance with the "Notes for the Guidance of Question Persons".
- Should any member of a team be found guilty of prompting in any shape or form, the Question Person shall treat any answer received as incorrect and then proceed to pass the question to the non-offending team.
- If any member of the audience should prompt a person answering a question, the Question Person shall cancel and ask a supplementary question.
- It is the duty of each captain to ensure that his or her team's supporters do not in any way prompt any member of the competing team.
- Two points shall be awarded to the winning team and one point to each team in the event of a draw.
- The result sheet must bear the names of all eight players in capitals and be countersigned by both Captains and the Question Person within 10 minutes of the completion of the game. The home captain is responsible for the result sheet being in the hands of the appropriate League Secretary within three days, or such period as the local league determines, of the date of play. Failure to comply with this rule will entail a fine of £1 on the home team or any penalty seen fit by the appropriate Council or Committee.
- a) If either team feels that an answer in the question set, or the Question Person's ruling, is incorrect so that points were wrongly awarded, they must say so immediately, or at least before the start of the next round. The Question Person must then invite the two captains to agree how points should be awarded if possible. Captains who know that a mistake has been made should concede the point(s) there and then. If teams cannot agree, the Question Person must note a possible protest.
- b) If, at the end of the game, the result turns out to depend on the disputed point(s) and it is decided to proceed with the protest, the captain of the protesting team must write the word PROTEST on the front of the score sheet and on the reverse side give brief details of the matter concerned. As a first step the two captains must consult reference books to confirm their opinions, try to agree to concede or withdraw the protest and inform the appropriate Secretary. If they cannot agree, then a written protest must be made within 7 days of the game to the appropriate Secretary, with a copy to the other team.
- c) Protests arising from Local League matches will be heard by the League concerned whose decisions shall be FINAL. Protests arising from all other competitions will be heard by a Committee appointed by the MQL Council. Both teams involved should be given 3 days' notice of the hearing and shall have the right to attend.
- Any tie at the end of each season for the first or second place in a League shall be settled by a play-off at a neutral venue, with Question Person, Timekeeper and Scorer appointed by the League Committees concerned or by any method decided by the local league.
- In all knockout competitions, ONE extra round shall be played if the game results in a tie after 8 rounds. If the game is still tried after 9 rounds, then a 10th round shall be played. The questions in these rounds shall be of a general nature. The order of answering will change after Round 8 and again after Round 9.
- Teams who enter the Challenge Cup or the MQL Plate and fail to fulfil a fixture without, in the opinion of the MQL Council, good reason, will be subject to a £6 fine.
- Committees of local leagues shall be required to undertake the following:
Local committees shall be empowered to fix dates or receipt of questions from constituent members of its league. These dates to be sufficiently far in advance of the closing date for registration as to allow time for vetting and to allow the replacement of inadequate sets before they enter general circulation.
- a) adequate vetting of questions submitted by its teams
- b) in respect of accuracy, correct wording, balance and general interest, acceptance of responsibility for those questions submitted by its teams
- Either Captain has the right to be told the score before a question is asked during the last round.
- Teams who fail to turn up for League games will suffer such penalty as the local area deems fit
- Press reports of matters concerning Quiz Teams and individual members must not contain any comment or statement capable of causing offence or embarrassment.
- All final League tables to be printed in the following season's Fixture Book.
- All unsold tickets for Merseyside Quiz League functions shall be returned 7 days prior to the function, otherwise the teams concerned will be held responsible for payment.
- Teams failing to pay fines imposed upon then within 14 days of the date of the notice of fining shall have their registration suspended until such time as the fine is paid, with games due to be played during this period being forfeit and points awarded to their opponents; or be liable to such sanctions as the local league committee or Council thinks fit to impose.
- Teams finishing, first, second or third in the first division of a constituent league of the MQL shall be entitled to compete in that season's Feeny Cup. Teams finishing first or second in any other division of a constituent league of the MQL shall be entitled to compete in that season's Rendon Cup. Any team which, having entered the Feeny Cup or the Rendon Cup then fails to fulfil any fixture without, in the opinion of the MQL Council, good reason, shall be subject to a £6 fine.
- The AGM shall elect as honorary Vice-Presidents any persons whom the meeting feel to be worthy of such election; a Vice-President shall hold office for three years, but may be re-confirmed in office for further terms, which may be consecutive.
- The Monday or Tuesday following the completion of a Division's season's fixtures shall be designated the occasion for any necessary play-offs in that Division. In the event that teams involved cannot agree a date, the decision as to whether the play-off matches are to be played on Monday or Tuesday shall be determined by the majority home night of the teams in that Division.
- Questions involving multiple-part answers should not be set in quizzes, and questions should be so structured as to avoid this type of answer.
- The MQL Council should draw up and publish competition rules for all competitions promoted directly by the MQL
- In all cases, MQL matches will take precedence over quiz matches organised by constituent leagues.
- An honorary President shall be elected by the A.G.M. to serve for a three-year term of office; a person may serve more than one term of office as President, although at no point shall a person serve consecutive terms in the office.
Answering Questions, resolved at the 2004 AGM
Each individual is allowed to answer, without penalty, their own questions. If they give a wrong answer, the question is then passed to a member of their own team. If still wrong it is then passed to the opposition. Scoring and timing remain unchanged.
Question Submission, resolved at the 2011 AGM
Teams failing to submit a set of questions largely suitable for an MQL match by 31st January prior to the start of the season for which the questions are set shall, in that season, be deducted one point for every week the questions are late.