The 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). The cards are dealt randomly, so that each player’s hand is not under their control. As a result, the player’s decision to bet is based on the value of their cards and their prediction of what their opponents will do.

The rules of poker vary widely between games and countries. Consequently, many disputes occur during play. To avoid misunderstandings, the International Federation of Poker (FIDPA) has established a set of rules that are recommended for adoption by all players. These 81 rules are freely downloadable on the FIDPA website.

In most poker games the standard 52-card pack is used, often with one or two jokers. The jokers are not used for betting purposes, but they can be counted as a fifth ace or to complete a flush or certain other special hands. The deuces (2s) are also wild.

A poker game may be played in a home or in a public place such as a casino or cardroom. A table is arranged to accommodate up to eight players. Each player is assigned a dealer button, which indicates the player’s turn to deal the cards.

The players may agree to establish a fund, called the kitty, to pay for new decks of cards and food and drinks. The kitty is built by “cutting” (taking) one low-denomination chip from each pot in which there has been more than one raise. Chips left in the kitty at the end of the game belong to all players equally.