How seriously do you want it?
Written by: Ton Kooijman
There is an issue in the bridge laws that keeps me busy for a long time already. It deals with L12C1e which tells that the non offending side is only held responsible for its damage when it causes an extremely serious error which is not related to the infraction. A good example is a revoke and an example Edgar Kaplan once gave is the first lead with the 9 from KQJ9, being fourth best and giving declarer a trick with the 10.
Because TD’s tend to hold also non offenders responsible for their choices/actions we even changed the laws in 2017 by adding the word ‘ extremely’ to ‘ serious error’. This means that the non- offending side in practice almost automatically will be completely compensated for the damage created by the offending side.
Let me give you an example that occurred last week here in Marrakech:
East explains to North 3 as shortage, which is the agreement, but West tells his screenmate it shows four or more clubs.
South leads 8 for the queen and ace and declarer plays 5 for the king and makes his contract. South played low, ‘knowing?’ that North will ruff.
EW do not deserve better than 4x -1, the result had South been rightly informed. But do NS deserve +100? The laws say ‘yes’. What do you say?
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