Definition: A Free Agent is defined as a member in good standing of any Member Association of Curling Canada competing as a non-resident player in the Tournament of Hearts and the Brier.
Free Agents are allowed to compete in the Tournament of Hearts and the Brier only (at any level of play). A maximum of one (1) Free Agent will be allowed per team, which includes any alternate player.
Free Agents competing in the Tournament of Hearts and Brier in any other Member Association will also be allowed to compete in any other competition (except the Tournament of Hearts and Brier) leading to any Curling Canada championship in the jurisdiction of the Member Association where they are resident. For example, player ‘A’ lives in Winnipeg and is a free agent for a Saskatchewan-based team in the Brier playdowns. Player ‘A’ would then be able to play in the Mixed for Manitoba, or any other Manitoba event he might be eligible for.
Student-athletes 20 years of age and under on June 30 the year prior to the Canadian Juniors or prior to the Under-18.
- A player under the age of 21 (as described above) and registered full time in a recognized school (elementary, high school, CEGEP, college or university), may compete as a Free Agent for any other Member Association in the Tournament of Hearts and the Brier only.
- Eligible athletes in this category have two (2) options:
- Option 1: They may compete as a Free Agent for any Member Association in the Tournament of Hearts and Brier and, they may compete for the Member Association where the school is geographically based in any other competition leading to any Curling Canada championship they are eligible to compete. For example, player ‘A’ lives in the Yukon, goes to school at the University of Alberta and is a free agent for a Nunavut-based team in the Tournament of Hearts. Player ‘A’ would be able to play in any other Alberta event she might be eligible for.
- Option 2: They may compete as a Free Agent for any Member Association in the Tournament of Hearts and Brier and, they may compete any other competition leading to any Curling Canada championship they are eligible for in the jurisdiction of the Member Association where their family resides. For example, player ‘A’ lives in the Yukon, goes to school at the University of Alberta and is a free agent for a Nunavut-based team in the Tournament of Hearts. Player ‘A’ would be able to play in any other Yukon event she might be eligible for.
- Either option is acceptable, but not both.
- This policy does not apply to the University or College curling championships. These events are operated under eligibility rules established by U SPORTS and CCAA and do not affect eligibility in Curling Canada events. A student-athlete can compete for any university/college in any province or territory without jeopardizing their ability to compete in any Curling Canada competition.
- If asked, traditional on-campus, full time students will establish residency by providing a confirmation letter from their school’s Registrar’s Office confirming full time status and class enrollment for the academic year. This policy defers to the institution that the student attends in terms of defining full-time student status. Enrolment in online schools is ineligible for this exemption.
Student-athletes requesting this exemption must identify their “Free Agent”, then notify the Member Associations involved, seeking their approval. If necessary, they may be asked to provide the required documentation proving the remaining players (3 of 4) are bona fide residents of the Member Association they are intending to represent.
“Free Agent” requests must be received by the respective Member Associations thirty (30) days prior to the Member Association deadline for entry to the first stage of the championship in question. Following the approval process between the respective Member Associations, the player must also be registered appropriately on the Canadian Team Ranking System (CTRS). Finally, the Member Associations will forward copies to Curling Canada.
All individuals must comply with the membership criteria of the province or territory they wish to represent including the acquisition of a Curling Canada Competitor Card.
Individuals claiming to be bona fide residents of the curling jurisdiction they wish to represent or, individuals engaged in the exemption process, may be requested to participate in Curling Canada’s Whereabouts Program, as administered by the Director of High Performance to validate their residency or the merit of their request for an exemption.