Partner is dealer. RHO opened bidding out of turn, and I either pass or overcall before anyone calls attention to the infraction. Is the offender's bid accepted? Does the dealer still have options?

2 Answers 2


ruds, of course, is right (my standard spiel here is "one of the next players' options is to accept the call. By bidding, she has taken that option. Please continue.") I want to go through the rest of the story.

The One Rule (in my mind, said with capitals) is Law 9B1a: "The Director should be summoned at once when attention is drawn to an irregularity"*. So:

  • if nobody noticed until after you called, then there was no attention drawn, everything's fine. Now that attention has been drawn, call the TD, who will rule as L29A. Note that L11A starts "The right to rectification of an irregularity may be forfeited if either member of the non-offending side takes any action before summoning the Director."
  • if someone did notice and mentioned it and you called anyway, then you have also become an offending player (L9B2: "No player shall take any action until the Director has explained all matters in regard to rectification.") Which isn't a problem here, as the opponents aren't damaged by taking one of the valid options without them being explained to the table (as opposed to, for instance, attempting to enforce the leading restrictions of a penalty card where with knowledge of the Law, the opponents could have played differently to avoid the situation), but don't do it anyway. The Director is there for a reason.
  • if they did notice, and called the TD before you called, you would be given the options in Law 29:
    • (L29A) accept the call and call over it; or
    • (L29B) cancel the call, let dealer open the bidding, and then:
      • if the cancelled call was pass, then the special case of L30A applies: "When a pass out of rotation is made at offender’s RHO’s turn to call, the offender must pass at the next turn to call..."
      • if the cancelled call was a bid, then (L31A) if dealer passes, they must repeat that bid. If dealer bids, then L23 "Comparable Call" comes into play, and that is definitely something to leave to the Director.
    • Note that things are different, and more complicated, if it was dealer's partner or RHO that called out of turn (and that call is not accepted), or if it is not an opening call out of turn. Never Make Your Own Rulings is the mantra, but especially do not with calls out of turn. It's been three years, and I still read these out of the Law Book every time.

Note that in no case (accepted or not) does dealer get an option; all the options are with the offender's LHO (in your example, you). This is something that frequently comes as a surprise at the table. The person with the options must even make that decision without advice from partner (L10C2) - so in your case, dealer can't even ask you to reject the call.

* All quotes from the WBF Laws of Duplicate Bridge 2017, Gender Neutral Edition.


Law 29 of the Laws of Duplicate Bridge applies.

A. Forfeiture of Right to Rectification
Following a call out of rotation offender’s LHO
may elect to call thereby forfeiting the right to
any rectification.

In other words, the auction continues as though RHO were the dealer.

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