How to Become a Soccer Referee in Michigan: Steps and What to Know

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If you’re interested in becoming a soccer referee in Michigan, here’s what you need to know about the process and whether or not it’s worth it.

Options to Become a Soccer Referee in Michigan

There are several different options for becoming a soccer referee in Michigan. Some organizations require you to pay for courses, while others recognize the desperate need for referees and don’t charge any fees. There are many jobs available that don’t require any experience. Higher-level (and usually higher-paying) games require you to work at lower levels first.

Here are some of the places you can look for referee jobs.

Adult Soccer Referee Jobs in Michigan

Many local recreational leagues employ their own referees. Contact the league directly for more information.

More competitive leagues may use USSF-certified referees through the Michigan Referee Committee. To obtain your referee badge, you must first register and then pay a fee.


Grand Rapids

Ann Arbor

Youth Soccer Referee Jobs in Michigan

Like adult soccer, there is a mix of different leagues. Recreational leagues often hire directly. Travel clubs under the Michigan State Youth Soccer Association may use USSF-certified referees.


Ann Arbor

Michigan High School Soccer Referee Jobs

Michigan state high schools play in their own leagues. New officials must register with the Michigan State High School Athletic Association. If you have experience in other sports, you can become an official for those sports as well.

College Student Soccer Referee Jobs

College students often take advantage of all of the above options. The flexible schedules work well with their school schedules. They also have the ability to earn extra income both at home and at school.

How old do you have to be to ref soccer in Michigan?

The Michigan Referee Committee requires referees to be at least 13. Michigan’s child labor law has a special exemption allowing referees as young as 11 to work games with younger players. If you’re under 13, you may be able to find a private league that will hire you.

Some organizations may have different minimum age requirements to meet their specific needs. Some high-level youth and adult sports leagues may require adult referees.

If you are hiring referees, you should be aware of the potential civil and criminal liabilities of not following the child labor laws especially if something happens to a minor while working (even if it’s never been a problem before). Referee assignors will typically be liable personally for any violations even if the organization who hired you said it was OK (and they will almost certainly not back you if there is a lawsuit). In addition to the minimum age requirements, be sure to research things like required breaks and the maximum hours minors can work.

How much do soccer referees make in Michigan?

Referees are paid per game. Michigan high school soccer referees typically make $50 to $65 per game. Other games vary by level and typically range from $15 to $70.

Read Referee Tax Guide to learn more about what taxes you’ll owe.

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