Published on October 10th, 2012 | by Nikolay
Gambling Laws Around The World
With the rise popularity of online gambling it is becoming increasingly important for members of the gambling community to understand the laws and regulations that surround their hobby, be it from the perspective of starting an online gambling business or just having a gamble yourself. Here we take a look at some of the differences in the legislation that surrounds gambling across the world.
European licensing for e-gaming businesses
E-gaming has changed the face of gambling and has led to numerous discussions in European courts on how to handle the issue; the issue being that vital gaming licence. For operators this is the main obstacle, given that establishing yourself online requires a licence and when some countries cannot provide you with one, this tends to make life a little difficult.
When it comes to internet gambling the rules are often changing, especially in Europe. The majority of online gambling operators used to base themselves in areas with independent offshore jurisdictions such as Malta, Gibraltar, Alderney and the Isle of Man. For online gaming operators the off shore jurisdiction in these areas gave more freedom than their mainland counterparts. You see, there are only a few major economies that had regulations in place that allowed for private e-gaming companies to obtain a licence. This is why such companies moved, as it was easier to obtain a licence in these areas.
However if you are interested in setting up your own e-gaming business then the regulations are becoming clearer. France, Italy, Spain and Denmark have introduced specific domestic e-gaming licensing regulations that require operators to apply for a licence from that country in which you wish to set up shop.
The UK has no official laws regulating online gaming and because of this the UK attracts many gambling operators from overseas. However be warned, rather than choosing to regulate through legislation the UK has chosen to adopt high taxes on such activities. These taxes have even led some companies to move their business abroad where they can, not only become legally licensed, but also where their British customers can bet tax free.
However if you simply want to participate in some harmless gambling then even this may have its complications…
In Brazil, all online gambling is illegal. Brazil’s Special Organised Crime Prevention Task Force stated that it is an illegal game of chance and any Brazilian engaging in it can be punished, even if the site is based in a foreign country. Harsh. All online gambling is also banned in Russia and India. Online gaming is also banned in Germany apart from the state of Schleswig-Holstein, in which casinos are now allowed to apply for online gambling licenses.
In the US the legality varies from state to state. The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 effectively made all online gambling illegal, by making bank transactions to gambling sites illegal. A bill (H.R. 2267), however, was passed in 2010 which allowed states to legalise and regulate online gambling. On November 2010, New Jersey legalised certain aspects of online gaming. Early in 2012, Nevada and the District of Columbia took the first steps to making online gambling legal, but only within the state boundaries.
The UK has no restrictions in place for online gambling, so if you fancy a bit of online poker or roulette then you’re free to do as you please (as long as you’re 18, of course). As mentioned previously, however, this freedom only exists because online gambling companies are taxed so heavily within the UK.
So word to the wise, if you’re going to gamble elsewhere in the world, the rules and regulations can be very confusing. Double check those terms and conditions, read the guide book, and try not to step out of line, because with such confusing regulations its incredible easy to.
Author: This article was written by a guest author – Alfie Davenport, who works in the technology department at Ladbrokes Roulette.