A neighboring state has instituted a modification for youth games and I am uncomfortable having to enforce should I elect to officiate there. (I live nearby and could work games there.)
Here is their modification:
If play is stopped for a reason without a prescribed restart (e.g., injury stoppage) they award an indirect free-kick to the team that was in possession of the ball at the time instead of a drop ball. (NFHS influence at work here, I suspect.)
It caused some issues here at a tournament where I was assigning referees when those neighboring referees attempted to use that restart in our games.
I don’t see this as fitting into any of the five listed items on page 3 of the Laws of the game, “Notes on The Laws of the Game.”
USSF answer (July 24, 2008):
The restart described is not authorized under the Modifications described in the Introduction to the Laws of the Game 2008/2009. The correct restart for a non-foul/misconduct stoppage not described elsewhere in the Laws is a dropped ball — see Law 8. As we do not know — i. e., have not been able to determine — whether or not the state association involved has applied this ruling across the board, we cannot give a more complete answer.
The indirect free kick restart described is taken from high school rules, which are not applicable to games played under the aegis of U. S. Soccer or U. S. Youth Soccer. It is true that an indirect free kick restart is authorized if a player commits any other offense, not previously mentioned in Law 12, for which play is stopped to caution or send off a player, but that would not be the case in the situation you put forth.
The only further advice we can give is that the Federation has no direct control over such modifications, but a referee who accepts a game operating under rules of competition that mandate unauthorized modifications must officiate the game under those rules. In other words, know the rules before accepting the assignment.
On the other hand, referees who come from a state where such modifications are used must not seek to apply them in another jurisdiction playing under different rules of competition.