I agree with the poster that said it depends on the organizer and the judges. The last point sparring tournament I attended changed the rules from "light contact" to "no contact, only controlled strikes" because two competitors got mildly heated at each other and fought a little hard. It was a complete waste of money and all the competitors in the division was annoyed.

On the other hand, I attended a tournament in South Carolina where the only taboo part of the body was the front of the face and back of the head. The sides of the head were live, making the only real illegal technique a straight punch to the face. Even though it was point-stop sparring, I felt the intensity of the fight.

I for one am used to leaving the dojo bruised from point sparring. We usually start a sparring session with point-stop sparring to refine and hone technique under pressure. We don't even count points unless the session is geared toward tournament sparring. We then transition into continuous full impact sparring where we really don't pull our techniques. A lot of people usually sit this part of the session out.
Memoirs of a Karateka