Author Topic: Betting out of turn: how to handle, should penalties always be given?  (Read 16328 times)

MikeB

  • Administrator
  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 1156
The TDA received the following interesting question (and statements) on the subject of betting out of turn. It is posted here anonymously, my reply is below, please feel free to comment.

******************Start ****************
From: [name withheld]
Subject: betting out of turn

Message Body:
my local casino in the [country withheld] has just decided to adopt your set of rules to be used in our poker room.could you please explain to me why, with such an array of poker experts in your team you have a rule which allows people to basically cheat or gain an advantage by betting out of turn. most of the major casinos in [country withheld] have adopted rules to stop people doing this.ie, 2 hand penalties and the bet does not stand and no further action can be taken by that player on that level (pre flop, flop, turn or river). this was the same in our casino untill they decided to adopt your rules and has caused nothing but  trouble, arguments and rows ever since it was introduced, why in gods name with so many senior experts in poker can you allow this to happen in your rules when so many poker players the world over agree that betting out of turn is not just annoying, it is basically cheating  

******************End of inquiry**********

Reply:

Hello [name withheld] and thanks for contacting the TDA:

It appears that someone on your staff is mis-interpreting the TDA rules on bets out of turn. Hopefully the following will clarify the issue:

1: Neither the TDA, nor any other rules set we are aware of condones betting out of turn. Your e-mail suggests that the TDA Rule "allows" people to bet out of turn. Not one but two TDA rules provide for the possibility of penalties for action out of turn (Rule 38 and Rule 62). Rule 38-A: "Action out of turn is subject to penalty..."  and Rule 62: "...etiquette violations will result in penalties... examples include but are not limited to... repeatedly acting out of turn". Note that in Rule 62 the TDA does not make a distinction between deliberate and non-deliberate when the player acts repeatedly out of turn. In Rule 38-A it is up to your TD judgement given the circumstances whether to assess a penalty. You say that in your house rules you make all action out of turn (intentional or unintentional) penalizable and that is within the scope of your authority under Rule 38-A.

SO, first off, if you as TD choose to apply a specific penalty to out of turn action, you are 100% within the scope of the TDA Rules as you can see in the above. But action out of turn is not always deliberate, and sometimes their is partial responsibility on the part of the dealer or the skipped player who either had his cards hidden or otherwise may have failed to initially protect his action. Therefore the TDA prefers the TD make a real-time judgement on the specific circumstances.

2: What the rules do, and what all rules must provide for is to specify what will happen if they attempt to make a bet out of turn. As such, the TDA rules clarify: A) under what circumstances the bet is binding; B) what the responsibilities of the skipped player (s) are

3: The TDA Rule is consistent with other widely used rules on out-of-turn action such as:
 Roberts Rules, Section 1 Proper Behavior - Proper Etiquette - Line 2.http://www.homepokertourney.com/roberts-rules-of-poker.htm and
Roberts Rules, Section 3 General Poker Rules - Betting and Raising - Rule 11 "Deliberately betting out of turn will not be tolerated..."

4: We can assure you that the TDA receives many inquiries about how to implement a given rule in a given situation. We receive very few inquiries regarding action out of turn. It is an area where the rules are well defined, including the provision of penalties where appropriate, and the membership generally finds these rules to be exactly what they need to make effective rulings when the problem arises.

5: Importantly, different tournament settings may be more prone to frequent action out of turn. Some tournaments exhibit a high level of player discipline, with few such occurences while other environments have a greater frequency of out-of-turn and other disruptive and unruly behavior. The TDA recognizes that each setting is unique and the TD needs the latitude to govern each environment accordingly so as to produce a manageable event. If you find that for your environment you need immediate penalties in every situation, then again, you have that authority under the specific TDA Rules on out of turn (38 and 62), but also under Rule 1 "in the best interest of the game", and Rule 58 - Penalties and Disqualification, section A "Penalties will be invoked for... disruptive behavior and cheating".

To permit further discussion on this important issue, we are posting your inquiry anonymously on the Poker TDA Discussion Forum at the following link:
http://www.pokertda.com/forum/index.php?topic=930.0

Please feel free to join in the discussion with your fellow TDs there.

Thanks for contacting the TDA and we look forward to hearing from you in the future
« Last Edit: September 20, 2013, 09:17:41 AM by MikeB »

Nick C

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 3310
    • http://www.pokertda.com/forum/index.php?action=profile;u=557;sa=forumProfile
Re: Betting out of turn: how to handle, should penalties always be given?
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2013, 10:58:23 AM »
Mike,
 I have to say that I agree with the response from the anonymous person's inquiry. I think the new changes put too much blame on the skipped player. In my opinion, the OOT player is the culprit. The Out Of Turn Rule should focus more on exactly that...out of turn.

 I'm not looking for an argument, especially one I can't win. I made suggestions on this Forum years ago, and I still feel the same: I will add Rule #29 to my list of TDA rules that could use some work. This is NOT the TDA rule, only my suggestions for improvement

RULE # 29    VERBAL DECLARATIONS / ACTING IN TURN       ****** Please Note, the # of the rule has changed, and Acting In Turn and OOT are Split between #37 and #38.

This is not a current rule...it is my suggestion from years ago.

29.1   Players must act in turn. Verbal declarations in turn will have precedence over actions or gestures. Therefore; a player stating a wager, but pushing a different amount into the pot, will be corrected to the spoken amount.

29.2    Players acting out of turn because they were misled by another player, or the dealer, will have the right to retract their wager and change their action provided another player has not acted after them. If another player acts, (substantial action) the skipped player, or players, may only fold or call when action returns to them, they can not raise.

 29.3    Deliberate action out of turn, including words and gestures, WILL BE AS BINDING AS A BET IN TURN. The deliberate action out of turn will remain in the pot even if the intervening player raises in front of them. The out of turn player can call, or surrender their bet and fold. The option to raise will be taken away.

 29.4    Any out of turn action may seriously disrupt the flow of the game. Deliberate action out of turn is highly unethical in any form of poker. Therefore, repeat offenders will be penalized up to, and including, being eliminated from tournament play, at the discretion of the floor.

This is from a prior post.

http://www.pokertda.com/forum/index.php?topic=169.0


I want to pass this along to everyone. I have found that the rules used in Las Vegas over thirty years ago, (the Las vegas Hilton Rule Book) set the standards for RRoP and any other rules that followed. I will submit this portion exactly as written (only a small portion).

          A 13. ACTION OUT OF TURN

          A player has a right to act on his hand, and an obligation to notify the other players that he has not yet acted when the
          betting action bypasses him. Therefore, the following rules apply when the betting action bypasses a player who has
          not yet acted:

          a.) IF SUBSTANTIAL ACTION TAKES PLACE BEHIND A PLAYER WHOSE TURN HAS COME TO ACT AND HAS NOT YET ACTED, THE ACTIONS STAND.
          THE PLAYER MUST CHECK IF THERE HAS NOT BEEN A BET TO HIM, AND MAY ONLY CALL OR FOLD IF THERE WAS A BET TO HIM.
          "SUBSTANTIAL ACTION" MEANS EITHER THREE PLAYERS ACTING, OR TWO PLAYERS ACTING BY PUTTING MONEY IN THE POT. THE DEALER
          COUNTS AS A PERSON IF HE HAS CONDONED THE ACTION, AND IS CONSIDERED HAVING ACTED IF HE HAS DEALT THE BURNCARD OFF THE
          DECK OR PUSHED THE ACTION PAST THE PROPER PLAYER.

          b.) IF SUBSTANTIAL ACTION HAS TAKEN PLACE AFTER A PLAYER WHO HAS NOT YET ACTED, AND THE DEALER DEALS ANY CARDS FOR THE NEXT
          ROUND, THE PLAYER WHO HAS NOT CALLED ALL BETS HAS A DEAD HAND

Amazing! Everyboby is still blaming the poor chap that got skipped! ......"Oh Mr Jones, your hand is dead because Freddy bet out of turn and then the dealer let Sally raise Freddy's bet." I'm smiling, but it really isn't that funny.

 The OOT bettor is the offending player. That is where the problem began. Like I said before, why allow him any chance to dictate how much, the player that was skipped should bet? If he bets out of turn, and he was not misled by the dealer or another player, he should be held to his intentional Out Of Turn action. That's what I don't like about the rule as written. The more I think about it, the more I feel that the OOT should have no raise option, either.
 I like the idea of punishment to the offending player.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2013, 07:46:13 PM by Nick C »

K-Lo

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 869
  • @AskTheTD on Twitter
    • Ask the Tournament Director
Re: Betting out of turn: how to handle, should penalties always be given?
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2013, 12:30:49 PM »
Something similar to this issue was discussed at the summit, but no agreement was reached.  The old way touted by the original poster suggests that the OOT bet would NOT stand and that further aggressive action would not be permitted by the OOT player. This is not that different from old approaches to players exposing cards with action pending that was used in some venues.  By taking away the right of the player to bet or raise as a penalty, it prevents the non-offenders from being pushed out of the pot.

The issue with this approach is that is assumes that the non-offending players want the OOT player to be forced to play passively for the rest of the hand. Suppose the missed player actually wants the OOT player's bet to stand. The missed player may even want the OOT player to continue to bet further streets (e.g. If the OOT player would fold to a bet, but continue betting as a bluff when checked to).  Thus, we may actually be penalizing the skipped player further in these situations. Another issue is that if you force the player to retract his bet, he can play the opposite angle -- going all-in knowing that he would be forced to retract it.  The action will tend to slow most players down anyways, and a fixed 2 hand penalty may be a small price to pay to try to get everyone to check the hand down.

Nick's proposal, as I understand it, is somewhat the opposite:  the bet OOT should always be binding (unless the OOT player was misled), regardless of the intervening action. This penalizes the OOT player, and prevents allowing him to try the angle of feigning strength, but giving him the option of retracting his bet and folding if a missed player proceeds to make a bet or raise anyways.  I do see some advantages to this - it does not make it look like the OOT player got off easy when an intervening player raises and then the OOT player decides to fold.

But the second approach has problems as well. It assumes that the missed player will always want the OOT player's bet to be binding. Perhaps the missed player wanted to go all-in to get everyone to fold -- if the OOT player was forced to leave his bet in, perhaps he would be more likely to call than if he were allowed to retract his bet.  Just as in the above situation, we do not know exactly what the innocent, missed player actually wants to happen.  By forcing the action one way or another, we may actually be hurting the non-offending players more than we are helping them.

The current rule, I think, tries to strike a balance between the two options above. The missed player can control whether the OOT action will be binding, by either checking or calling, or changing the action by raising. I think it is workable in its current form -- the key for TDs to remember is that just because the player is allowed to retract his bet does NOT mean that he is immune from being penalized. In fact, if anything, he has benefited by saving chips despite his OOT wager attempt, and a substantial penalty (e.g. 1 or 2 rounds) IMO is in order.  The greater the possibility that the OOT action influenced the play, the more serious the penalty should be. OOT action is not condoned - make the penalty severe enough in appropriate situations and you will have made your point.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2013, 01:20:20 PM by K-Lo »

Nick C

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 3310
    • http://www.pokertda.com/forum/index.php?action=profile;u=557;sa=forumProfile
Re: Betting out of turn: how to handle, should penalties always be given?
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2013, 02:03:15 PM »
Ken,

 As always your points are all valid reasons for debates that can continue forever. If you will consider; my approach, on this and so many other debatable rules, is based on the bulk of the responsibility falls on the dealer. An alert dealer, that directs the action, from player to player, would eliminate the great majority of the problems we discuss on a regular basis.

 Now that I've said that, I have to mention the concerns of so many TD's regarding their poor dealers. Tough situation, for sure. Do we stifle the good dealer from doing his job just because other dealer's don't know what they're doing? I don't think so. Start training the weaker dealers, that's the way I'd like to see it.

 There is nothing like a poker game that has a competent dealer in the box, running the game! Wow, it truly is a thing of beauty, watching this professional at work. There are no problems to solve, because they are completely avoided.

Tristan

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 453
Re: Betting out of turn: how to handle, should penalties always be given?
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2013, 11:04:43 AM »
The skipped player, in this situation, is not being penalized at all.  The skipped player now has advance knowledge AND direct control over a part of the OOT players action.  I think we can all agree that both of these things can be very valuable.  Also the OOT player is disadvantaged by this as well.  I really feel like this is the ideal solution as the offending player is disadvantaged and the victim gets an advantage.

I do not feel that the skipped player has any blame placed on them in this situation nor should they.

If the OOT player is a repeat offender or doing it intentionally, I have no problem issuing them a strict penalty.
Tristan
@TristanWilberg on Twitter

Nick C

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 3310
    • http://www.pokertda.com/forum/index.php?action=profile;u=557;sa=forumProfile
Re: Betting out of turn: how to handle, should penalties always be given?
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2013, 01:21:57 PM »
If the dealer is allowed to direct the action, clockwise, from player to player...out of turn would not happen. This is poker...you can not bet out of turn, period!

 If the dealer is at fault, by prompting the wrong player to act, an exception must be made. Beyond that, as long as a player has his cards where they are visible and is not intentionally allowing action to pass him by, the blame belongs to the out of turn.

 You can not bet out of turn...you can not bet out of turn...you can not....