USE OF BIDDING BOXES
1. Bidding boxes will be used in all events held at NABC’s except I/N events (0-500). Their use will be optional in I/N events.
2. Units and Districts are encouraged to use bidding boxes in their games.
3. Handicapped players requiring bidding boxes will have preference when availability is limited.
4. Non-handicapped players may use bidding boxes, if available, in games in which such use is not mandated as long as no player at the table objects.
ACBL Bidding Box Policy
Any player has the right to use bidding boxes (assuming they are available) for any ACBL event in which they play if they are needed because of a hearing impairment. As a policy, we do not question
players as to the details of a handicap when they state that one exists.
When bidding boxes are in use for this reason, no player has the right to refuse to play with them. Players who have a handicap which preclude their use will have a distinctive card. The card will be displayed on the table and read, “due to a physical or visual handicap, we are not using bidding boxes.”
CHOOSING A CALL USING BIDDING BOXES
A player is obligated to choose a call before touching any card in the box. Deliberation while touching the bidding box cards may subject the offending side to the adjustment provisions of Law 16.
A call is considered made when a bidding card is removed from the bidding box and held touching or nearly touching the table or maintained in such a position to indicate that the call has been made.
We should use unauthorized information where reasonably appropriate (where we can rule that a bid has not been made). For close cases simply judge that the card had not left the confines of the box;
therefore, a call has not been made.
A call may be changed without penalty, under the provisions of Law 25A, only if a player has inadvertently taken out the wrong bidding card and the player corrects or attempts to correct his mistake without pause for thought and the player’s partner has not made a call.
The onus is on the player to convince the director that a mechanical irregularity has occured. Calls from different pockets should rarely, if at all, be judged as inadvertent. One understandable exception is
placing the double card out followed shortly with a bid card that skips the bidding. This appears clear that the double card was placed inadvertently on the table.
THE STOP CARD
Players should protect their rights and the opponent’s by announcing, prior to making any subsequent bid that skips one or more levels of bidding.
The Skip-Bid Warning is given by displaying the stop card, making a call and then returning the stop card to the bidding box. Following the Skip Bid Warning, LHO is obligated to wait approximately 10 seconds (while giving the appearance of studying his hand and not in excess time to determine a choice of bids) before making a call.
NOTE: If a player forgets to replace the stop card there is no penalty. It is each player’s responsibility to maintain appropriate tempo including after a skip bid.
If the stop card is placed on the table and a skip bid is not made, the director may judge that the bid card was played inadvertently or not. If the judgment is that the card was played after a “slip of the
mind” therefore with intent, then the situation is a Law 16 (Unauthorized Information) situation, not an insufficient bid – assuming that the player does not want to make (or did make) a
purposeful correction under Law 25 B.2. An example of this situation is; 1H – 2D – (after the stop card is displayed) 2S.
Except when screens are in use, a player must say “Alert” out loud when tapping the alert strip of the bidding box.