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Become a U.S. Soccer Referee

There are many reasons to become a referee:

  • Get Paid: earn good money to participate in a sport you love
  • Flexible Schedule: provide your own availability to assignors to work around your busy schedule
  • A New Way to be Part of the Game: continue to be involved in the game you love in ways other than playing or coaching
  • Health and Fitness
  • Challenge Yourself: becoming a referee is a rewarding process full of challenges and opportunities to advance to higher level and higher paying games
  • Develop Life Skills: discipline, leadership, organization, communication, professionalism and confidence
  • Improve our Sport: think you can do better than that other referee? Prove it!
  • Travel: sign up for tournaments all over the state of Georgia and the country
Details on the U.S. Soccer Referee Pathway can be read here. 
Per U.S. Soccer, new referees must be 13 years of age or older at the time of registration. State Referee Committees have no discretion in changing this.

To become a Grassroots Referee in the U.S. Soccer Referee Program, you must do the following:

  • Register for an Grassroots Entry In-Person  course in the Learning Center, and then attend the In-Person course. ($90 registration fee)
    • ​Complete all assignments in the assignments tab before attending the In-Person Course
      • Grassroots Online Course
      • 2020 Intro to Safe & Healthy Playing Environments
      • 2020 Grassroots Referee Certification Quiz
      • Upload SafeSport Certificate if 18 or older
    • Courses are throughout Georgia between July and early October. New course locations are being added on a continual basis as local clubs request to host courses
    • To view a list of currently available Entry Courses, click here.

If you are 18 years or older, you must also complete these two (2) mandatory items:

  • US Soccer NCSI Online Background Check ($30) – valid for two (2) years
    • Note - you will not be able to register for a course until the Background Check has been authorized if you are 18 or older
  • SafeSport Online Training (Required by Federal Law) – valid for two (2) years

Completing these requirements will certify a Grassroots Referee through December 31st, 2020.

What To Do Next

1. Create a Profile through the U.S. Soccer Referee Learning Center (LC).​

  • The unique account identifier is an email address. Parents may not use their lone email address to register multiple referees. Each referee needs their own email address. Parents may add a secondary email address to each account in order to receive any emails their referee is receiving from either US Soccer or the Georgia State Referee Committee.
  • A known issue while creating an account in the LC is a browser timeout. If this occurs for you, the US Soccer recommended steps are to clear your browser history, cache, and cookies. Close your browser, and try again. Alternatively, try a different browser or device to create your account.

2. Register for an In-Person Grassroots Entry Course through the U.S. Soccer Referee Learning Center.

Register for an Grassroots Entry In-Person  course in the Learning Center, and then attend the In-Person course. ($90 registration fee)
  • ​Complete 100% of all assignments in the assignments tab before attending the In-Person Course
    • ​E-Learning module (Grassroots Online Course) 4-6 hours
    • 2020 Intro to Safe & Healthy Playing Environments
    • 2020 Grassroots Referee Certification Quiz
    • Upload SafeSport Certificate if 18 or older
  • Here is a list of Available Grassroots In-Person Entry Courses, or:
    • In the LC, click "Courses," then "Available Courses," then "Grassroots First-time Referees".
      • Use the Location drop down and select Georgia to find a course near you. 
  • New courses in various locations are continually being added as local leagues and clubs request to host courses in their area.
  • The In-Person Course is an eight-hour course.  The course is split between a 3.5 hour classroom session, and a 3.5 hour field training session that takes place outside on a field. There will be a one-hour lunch break in between, usually from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM.

3. Safe Sport Training (mandatory if 18 years or older)

  • Download your certificate and upload in to the Learning Center through the "assignments" tab once you have registered for a course.
  • Safe Sport Training must be completed before attending the In-Person course. Estimated completion time is two (2) to 2.5 hours.
  • Safe Sport is Federal Law passed by the United States Congress and is mandatory for anyone 18 years or older. You can read more about it here.

4. Complete the US Soccer NCSI Background Check (mandatory if 18 years or older)

  • Available inside the Learning Center
    • ​Click Courses - Available Courses - Background Screening
  • Valid for two years per check
  • Mandatory for all referees 18 years or older

5. Download the IFAB Laws of the Game (LOTG).

  • The LOTG are available as an app on both Android and iOS.
    • ​Download on your devices and bring with you to class and to your games.

Email Anne Wright ( for general questions about the Georgia Soccer Referee Program.

Email US Soccer ( for general questions about the Learning Center, issues creating your account, background checks, etc.