Guide to Sin Bins

Mon 1st July 2019 | Respect Campaign
By Craig Kendall

From the start of season 2019-2020, The FA are introducing temporary dismissals for all Leagues, Clubs and Teams that sit outside the National League System from Step 5 and below, this includes Youth Leagues. This is your complete guide to how they work. 

What is temporary dismissal?  

A temporary dismissal is a timed period away from playing the game if a player receives by the referee a yellow card for dissent (C2). This will be managed by the Referee and he will manage this process 

Is this mandatory? 

From the start of season 2019-2020, yes this process will be implemented for those participants described above. 

Is this for all cautions? 

At the minute this process is only for cautions that are received for dissent (C2). 

Does this apply to all participants in the game? 

This process applies only to players and not substitutes or coaching staff. 

How will we know if the referee has applied a temporary dismissal? 

The referee will show a yellow card and point to the touchline. 

How long will the Temporary Dismissal last?  

10 minutes for all matches of 90 minutes  

When does the time commence? 

The time commences when play restarts. 

Can the player go back on after the time period? 

The player will be allowed back onto the field of play when the referee confirms he can, but there doesn’t need to be a stoppage in play.  

Can we substitute a player when he is in the sin bin? 

A player cannot be substituted until the temporary dismissal has expired and not at all if all substitutes have been used. 

Can a Temporary Dismissed player warm up? 


Will the Referee working on his own be able to control the Sin Bin Period? 

Yes if they follow the correct procedure. 

What happens if there is not enough time left to complete the Temporary Dismissal time? 

If the sanction was given in the first half or before extra time, the player will recommence the Temporary Dismissal at the start of the next game period. If the game concludes before the sanction has expired, the sanction will end; there is no requirement for the player to serve the remainder of the time at the following match. 

What happens if there are kicks from the penalty mark at the end of extra time and the sin bin has not expired? 

The player will be allowed to participate.  

What is the sin bin area?  

There is no set defined sin bin area; the player must just be off the playing area.  

What happens if the Team go down to less than 7 players as a result of a Temporary Dismissal? 

If it is the player’s second sin bin and not permitted to return – the game will be abandoned. 

Does this still get reported to the County FA? 

The referee will still need to report this to the County FA who will process the caution for the purpose of it being on the participant’s record, and the club will still be required to acknowledge this.  

Is there still an administration fee? 

For a simple Temporary Dismissal of one offence in a game, no there is no £10 administration.  

Does this caution count towards a caution accumulation?  

Yes, the will tally in accordance with the regulations for caution total regulations.  

How do repeat offences work?  

If a player commits another offence (red or yellow card) during the sin bin period they cannot take any further part in the game and cannot be substituted. This also includes the period between being informed that he/she is temporarily dismissed ie: on the field of play as well as the time he/she leaves the field of play and begins the sin-bin period.  

If the player commits a non-dissent caution at any time on the field of play in addition to the sin bin period will continue to play.  

If the player commits a 2nd dissent caution (and no other offences) will receive a 2nd period in the sin bin. At the end of that period, the player can take no further part in the game but can be substituted.  

All other Laws of the Game remain unaffected, so if a player receives two cautions for a non-dissent caution they will be sent off in the normal manner.  

Sanction Table  


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