Arbiter

What is the most important thing about Arbiter?

Setting accurate blocks and keeping them updated. If you don’t keep your blocks updated and decline a lot of games, you might find yourself with no games at all for the rest of the year.

 

Arbiter Support Site

If you have questions that aren’t answered on this page, try the ArbiterSports Officials Support page.

 

Profile

Follow the instructions listed at Updating Your Profile in ArbiterOne to get your account set up.

Be sure to enter your address because some leagues access this information to send you checks. Click the “public to other officials and contacts” checkbox so those contacts can access your address and send you checks.

Also, be sure to enter a cell number and make it “public”  to other officials and team contacts. If you don’t have a contact number entered and set to “public,” teams can’t call you if there’s a last-minute change or cancelation. If that happens and you show up for the game because they couldn’t contact you, you won’t get paid.

 

Upload photo

Please upload a picture by following the instructions on the How Do I Change My Picture page.

This must be a reasonably professional looking headshot where your face is clearly visible. Note: If your picture flips sideways, the file is probably too big; save it as a lower resolution, 200 by 200 pixels, and try again.

 

Block dates

Use Arbiter to block any date and time you could not accept and work a game if one were assigned to you. See the Arbiter Blocking Dates and Times page. If you have trouble with that video, this Georgia Lacrosse Officials Association video may also be helpful.

Times you should block include:

  • Times you are in school or work
  • Times when you have practice
  • Times when you have games
  • Times when you might be playing in section playoff games (the section playoff schedule is published about a year in advance.
  • Dates when your HS team could be scheduled for playoff games
  • Times when you want to be asleep
  • ACTs/SATs
  • Prom
  • Vacations
  • Any other time you would not accept a game if it were assigned

You must have some blocks set every week: pretty much no one is available at 3:00 a.m., so blocking something like 1:00 AM-5:00 AM shows that you didn’t just forget to set blocks. If you don’t have any blocks set, the assigner may assume that you are being irresponsible and will avoid assigning you to games. Do not check the “ready to be assigned” checkbox until your blocks are set.

Setting your blocks and keeping them updated is extremely important. It is assumed that if you’re listed as available and assigned a game you will accept it. (Adult officials: You can decline one JV/V game or pair of games for free each season. If you decline additional games, the assigning fees for those games will apply.)

If you are unsure whether you will be available, you are generally better off blocking the date in question and then unblocking when you are sure you are available than you are leaving yourself open and then having to decline or turn back games.

In general, you should set your blocks up until the time you can leave wherever you’ll be on that date. Arbiter calculates travel distances and times and is usually pretty accurate. However, if you need to go somewhere after a game, you will need to set the block to account for travel time after the game as Arbiter has no way of knowing where you are going (e.g., if you need to be somewhere at 8:00 p.m. and you block 8:00-midnight, you could still get assigned a game from 6:00-8:00).

If you are in different groups for Arbiter (e.g., you officiate hockey and your assigner uses Arbiter), be sure to pay attention to the part where they show how to block dates and times in one group or another (our group is “Northland (113507)”. Note that you cannot set blocks for any group unless you are logged in to a group that assigns you games (e.g., if you are logged into ArbiterPay or a Central Hub, you can’t set blocks for officiating).

 

Sharing schedules

If you use Arbiter for multiple sports or groups, click on “Profile,” then click the “Sharing” sub-tab and share everything possible. This allows assigners to avoid conflicts with games you might have in other groups.

 

Announcements

Check the announcements page each time you log in to see if there is anything new.

 

Travel limits

See the ArbiterSports.com Set Travel Limits page for instructions on setting travel limits. You can set your travel limits and departure ZIP code by day of week (if you leave the ZIP code blank, you will not get any assignments). This is helpful if you’ll, say, be leaving from work in Minneapolis on weekdays and from home in Buffalo on weekends. 

Please remember that the wider you set your travel limits the more games you are likely to get. For summer games, 25 miles or more for weeknights is generally appropriate, and longer for weekends (there are normally only one or two tournaments on a weekend, so if you have a narrow travel limit you will probably get no games on most weekends).

 

“Ready to be assigned” check box

After you have your profile set up and your travel limits and blocks set, check the “Ready to be assigned” check box on the profile page. If you don’t do this, you will not get any game assignments!

 

Schedule

Once you get assigned games, you’ll get an e-mail announcing that you have new assignments. Log in and click the “Schedule” tab. Make sure you click “List view” on the left side if that is not already checked. This will show you the games. Click “Accept” next to each game or set of games and click “Submit” (if you don’t click “Submit” the games will not be accepted). Again, you should have your blocks set so you should not need to decline games.

In your schedule, you can click on a site to get the address for that site and to get the site contacts; click on the address for directions. Click on the game number to see your partners. Click on an official’s name to get contact info for that official. Click on a team name to get team contact info.

If you’re assigned games that are linked together, you can’t accept one game and decline another. Contact your assigner if there’s an issue and he may be able to help.

Once you accept a game, you’ll get e-mail updates if there are any changes to the games. You’ll also get an e-mail reminder a few days before the game.

 

Schedule Filters

Arbiter has updated the way it shows your games. There is a filter at the top of the mail part of the page. It lets you select whether you are seeing games in the future, games in the past, all games, games in the next 30 days, and so on. You need to be in “list view” to see the filters: click the button for list view on the left side of the page.

If you get an email from Arbiter saying you have new games but when you log in you don’t see any new games, it’s almost certainly because you don’t have the filter set to show future games. Select “future games” from the menu and click “Apply” (not “Submit”; that is for accepting or declining games).

If you work games in multiple groups (e.g., Northland and MCLA lacrosse; Northland lacrosse and another sport such as hockey, football, or basketball), you can also select which groups you see when applying a filter.

 

Master schedule

 You can access the full schedule for all games, not just the games you are assigned to, by clicking “Schedule” and then clicking “Master Schedule” in the sub-bar. In many cases, Arbiter will reflect changes to games before coaches announce those changes to their teams. Of course, if you attach yourself to games, you will get a notification automatically when a game moves (see below).

 

Calendar feed

See the Arbiter Calendar Feed instruction page for information about how to get Arbiter to send accepted games directly to your calendar program.

 

ArbiterConnected text messaging option

Some officials have difficulty checking your e-mail regularly (the expectation is that you check your e-mail daily and that you always check it on the day you have a game prior to leaving for that game). ArbiterSports offers a service that allows you to get text message notifications whenever you would normally get Arbiter e-mails (you can also get e-mail notifications at multiple addresses). If desired, see this brief tutorial on how to set this up.

 

Lists

You can use the “Lists” tab to print out a directory of officials to keep in your bag. You can also check the list of sites or contacts by clicking the appropriate sub-tab.

 

Saving a copy of your schedule

You will generally be given about a one-week notice prior to the removal of the previous year’s games from Arbiter. At that time, you should save a complete copy of your schedule for tax purposes. To do this:

  1. Log into your Arbiter account.
  2. Click “Schedule.”
  3. Make sure the “Date” pulldown menu under “Filter” says “Show all” or “Past.”
  4. Check all groups you wish to have on your schedule (e.g., Northland, MCLA). Unless you officiate multiple sports or work college games, you will see only “Northland.”
  5. Under “Reports” on the left side of the page, click “Schedule.”
  6. Choose a date range (e.g., 1/1/2022 through 12/31/2022).
  7. Choose a report format (I recommend .pdf).
  8. Click “Print preview.”

Depending on your browser, the file may go to your downloads folder, open in a new window or tab, or something else. If you have trouble, try a different browser.

 

Blocking a team

As explained in your training guide, if there are teams for which you have a conflict (e.g., you work at the school, you have a child that plays for that team, you are a recent graduate), email your assigner and asked to be blocked. If the situation changes in the future, you will need to ask to have the block removed; they stay there forever otherwise.

 

Setting up your ArbiterPay account

Most games (other than spring HS games) are paid electronically via ArbiterPay. To set up your account, please follow the instructions posted on the ArbiterPay Quick Guide for Officials page. Payment for ArbiterPay games will generally show up in your ArbiterPay account within 2 weeks of the game and then you can transfer the funds to your bank account.

You will need to enter a Social Security number to set up the account. This is required by the IRS for tax reasons. The page where you enter it will have “https” in the address, indicating that secure encryption is being used.

 

Why does it list a dollar amount or say “NOT Paid”?

Games that are paid via ArbiterPay will have a dollar amount listed. This may change prior to payment depending on the rate of pay you are eligible for. The amount listed should show your game fees plus a travel fee on the first game of the set, if applicable.

If a game shows $0.00 or says “NOT paid,” that means it will not be paid via ArbiterPay and you should either expect payment on site or you will be sent a check shortly after the game. If you ever get an unpaid assignment, it will state that in your position for that game (e.g., “Trainee—Unpaid” for on-field training). Please do not decline games because they say “$0.00” or “NOT paid.”

 

Transferring funds to your bank account from ArbiterPay 

ArbiterPay payments generally happen about every 2 weeks, but there is a 1-week lag between the end of the pay period and when the payments are made, so it may take up to 3 weeks to get your first payment. When you log into ArbiterSports.com, you should see a button near the top of the page that says “Show Balance.” Click that, and if there are funds in the account you can transfer them to your personal bank account. To do so:

  1. Go to the Payments tab in ArbiterSports.com.
  2. That should take you to the Accounts sub-tab automatically.
  3. On the top right, click the “Transfer Money” button.
  4. Enter the 4-digit PIN for the account.
  5. Select the account you want to transfer from (the ArbiterPay account).
  6. Select the account you want to transfer to (your personal bank).
  7. Enter a dollar amount (normally all of the funds in the account).
  8. Click “Transfer.

 

Game reports

There is a “game report” feature in ArbiterSports.com which we do not use. Please don’t fill out those reports or change game statuses there (which can result in you not getting paid). If there was a problem with a game, email the assigner.

 

“Attaching” yourself to a game

If you play on or coach a team—or if you have kids playing on a team and you intend to go to all their games—you should block any dates and times when you are unavailable because your team is playing or practicing. However, you should also attach yourself to your team’s games. This will ensure you are blocked when your team has games scheduled, even if those game times and dates get changed in Arbiter.

To attach to a game, log into ArbiterSports.com, click “schedule” in the menu bar, then click “attach” in the sub-bar. Select the sport, level, and team, then attach to any of those games.

 

Turnbacks

If you are assigned a game and accept it, you must contact the person who assigned you that game to turn the game back (this would be the person from whom the e-mail came announcing that you had new games; you can also see the assigner by going to the “Schedule” tab and clicking the game number). For spring HS games. assigning fees generally apply to turnbacks but are waived for unavoidable situations such as injuries.

Please note that you are not to find your own substitute if you cannot make a game; that is the assigner’s job. If you can’t contact your assigner, contact another Northland assigner (Harold Buck, Matt Dempsey, or Brad Scibak; you can get their contact info from Arbiter). If you can’t contact anyone, make sure you have e-mails and phone calls in to the assigner, the backup assigners, your partner or partners, and the home team head coach or host site contact. Suspensions may result if you do not attempt to contact these people and do not show up for a game.

 

“Save the Date” assignments

Sometimes we know there will be a large number of games on a certain date but won’t have an exact schedule yet, so we create a “Save the Date” assignment in ArbiterSports.com so you know to keep that date open if at all possible. Those assignments will often look like 9-hour games, but when the actual schedule is available, you will get assigned to some shorter set of games. When the actual games are assigned, we will respect your blocks. If you have one of these assignments and end up finding out you won’t be available, say, after 2:00, then go ahead and block from 2:00-midnight and when the assignments come out you will get earlier games.

Note that we do the best we can to estimate the number of officials we need for a date, but on some occasions we might end up needing fewer (or more).