So I had a situation the other night where a person bet $35 out of turn, and I told him that if the action before him didn't change, that the bet had to stand. So after the hand, he asked if he were to say "fold" out of turn, and then the action changed, was he still committed to folding? I informed him that he was. Some people were unclear about this. I just want to make sure that the word fold is binding regardless.
Most of the time in poker, the WSOP rules are held as canon, so keeping that in mind, this is what the 2016 WSOP rulebook has to say:
- Non-Standard Folds: Any time before the end of the last betting round of a hand, folding in turn when there’s been no bet to you (ex: facing a check or first to act post-flop) or folding out of turn are both binding folds and may be subject to penalty in accordance with Rules 40 & 111.
So, yes, it is binding, and if done on purpose, grounds for the infringing player to be penalized.
I've been a professional floor person, and I've run many high stakes home games for over 20 years.
The applicable poker rule is:
- Verbal is binding.
If you say "fold" out of turn, you're folding. However, in a casino you will be told to "please play in turn", although this is merely a suggestion in this particular hand, and will never be enforced. What will be enforced, is if you keep doing it, you may be asked to leave.
Anyway, there is never an immediate penalty for folding out of turn [what can happen to you? You're giving up the hand!], but it is usually considered bad etiquette. You can get thrown out or dis invited for doing this.
Note that it's not always bad etiquette to fold out of turn. This often depends on the skill level and friendliness of the players. Also, as has been noted, tournaments have various and different rules. There is absolutely NO uniform way of handling this in casino tournaments - not even at the WSOP. In fantasy world there might be a rule written somewhere, but it's only variously enforced.