Official Poker Rules

Poker is a card game in which individuals compete for an amount of money or chips contributed by the players themselves, called the pot. Individuals place bets based on the cards they have, their prediction of what their opponents may have, and other factors such as their own position at the table. In Texas hold’em, the most popular form of poker, each player receives two cards hidden from the rest of the players, then five community cards are dealt in three stages (the flop, the turn, and the river). Bets are placed on a possible poker hand consisting of one or more of these cards and the two hole cards held by each player.

When a player wishes to remain in the game without betting, they may “check.” The player must call or raise any bet raised by another player before checking again. A player can only check if no other player has done so in the same betting interval. Otherwise, the player is sandbagging and may be removed from the game.

Phones, ring tones, music, images and other devices should not be used at the poker table. These can disrupt the game and disturb other players’ concentration and create a competitive advantage. Players should not give advice to other players, and they should not talk about the strength of their own holding. This is against official poker rules. If an incorrect number of chips is put into the pot or an error is about to be made awarding a hand, the player has an ethical obligation to point out the mistake.