Gaming License Jurisdictions For Online Casinos
This list of casinos is to separate them by their online gambling/gaming license jurisdiction. You can click on the casino review itself to learn more about a particular casino or click on the license titles to learn more about that specific license jurisdiction for the location and the history of their licensing.
Gaming License Jurisdictions for Online Casinos
Why do online casinos need licenses and do they matter?
In most countries to set up an online gambling operation, the operator needs to hold a license. Before the year 2000 there have been some online gambling companies operating without a license because some countries just didn’t feel the need to create regulations. However, over time, having a gaming license was key to gaining the trust of players. Now the online gaming industry is heavily reg|ulated and that is great news for everyone including casino players. Gaming licenses aim to protect the players by ensuring that gambling companies offer fair games and also pay taxes.
As of 2013, there have been many countries that have setup their own licensing and regulations including France, United Kingdom, Spain, Mexico, Canada, United States of America, Germany and many more. Players can expect that in 2014 and beyond that most countries will have setup their own licensing to protect players in their country and ensure the games are tested for fairness.
Gaming licenses provide protection to the players, ensuring whether online casinos offer fair games and pay taxes. Gaming license jurisdictions are different from place to place and none covers the legality of online gambling for the whole world.
An online casino website usually chooses its location based on the legislation it adheres to.
Every country has its own laws and many regions make regular changes to their legislation. Online jurisdiction or license jurisdiction which are typically known as licensing authorities- are specific regions that have particular legislation, which allows them to operate online gambling sites and provide industry services.
Those who play on online gambling sites can further get all the essential must-knows.
How Does Gaming License Jurisdictions Affect You?
You don’t want to be in trouble while playing online gambling or betting games being unaware of some explicit laws. Again, as different regions will have different jurisdictions, it also varies from how strict they abide by the laws.
However, it's safer being in a strict jurisdiction. You should be aware of the relevant legalities depending upon your location and also the regulatory practices within the jurisdiction.
3 Reasons to Get Gaming License for Online Casinos & Other Games
Without A License, You Have Merely Any Confidence or Security
The first reason is authenticity/credibility. Without it, there’s no trust and security. It becomes more crucial as here money and data are involved.
If a person faces a financial crisis on an unlicensed casino platform, that person will have no one to turn to complain or revert to the problem. No matter how many promotions or offers a casino gives, a gambler won’t feel secure without the license.
Financial organizations, credit cards, and virtual wallet operators associate only with licensed sites as they don’t want to be in trouble with financial frauds, data leaks, or scams of any sort.
Without a gaming license, any site won’t be able to get access to most of the payment methods. And the site could lose customers. Keep in mind, depositing money on a gambling site without a gaming license can also be considered a way of deceiving and scamming.
To have a safe payment process, it’s important to have a gaming license for a casino owner.
Unlicensed Gambling Is Simply Illegal
Some bookmakers operate without licensing but the near future is doomed as they can be shut anytime and charged with crimes.
If a person decides to play on such sites, there’s no guarantee that the player’s data won’t be leaked or any scams won’t occur. And when any such issue occurs, the customer can’t turn to any law for help.
The money in the player’s wallet can also be taken by the bookmaker as credit and the player can’t get the money back.
Top 5 Online Gambling Licensing Jurisdictions
Malta Gaming Authority
The MGA, formerly known as LGA was created in 2001 to serve as a licensing organization, regulatory body, and independent auditing company for all kinds of entities within the industry.
They’re the service providers for Redgate, Royal Vegar, Ruby Fortune, Roxy Palace, and many more. MGA operates licensing and regulating sports betting sites, bingo halls, the national lottery, and poker rooms as well.
Curacao E-gaming Licensing Authority Netherlands Antilles
When it comes to the number of licenses granted, the government of the island of Curacao provides the most. Over 450 online casinos, sports betting houses, bingo halls, and many types of i-gaming industry have been licensed by them.
Their first was in 1999 to Cyberluck casino. The licensing authority issues only one license to cover all the games, software, poker rooms, etc.
Gibraltar Licensing & Regulatory Authority
British crown-dependant Gibraltar is the third-largest online gaming licensing authority in the world. It's been in operation for 15 years since its first in 1998.
In these years, they have licensed over 300 organizations. Currently, they issue many types of e-gaming licenses for bookmakers, gaming operators, lottery promoters, and a few others.
Alderney Gaming Control Commission (AGCC) is a gambling operator licensing jurisdiction with servers located in Guernsey.
It's one of the whitelisted remote jurisdictions under the UK online gambling law as the commission established in the year 2000 and has kept a clean record ever since.
As a matter of fact, they’re now known for varied forms of licensing like full license, short-term license, and also licenses for the companies with operators in other jurisdictions.
Kahnawake Gaming Commission
This commission is owed by the Aboriginal Mohawk groups of Kahnawake. This commission relates only to online casinos, poker rooms, raffles, and lotteries operated and owned by the Mohawk people of Kahnawake.
They provide licensing and regulating to both online and offline gaming. They were appointed in 1996 but started giving gaming licenses in July 1999.
Online Gambling Laws in Top Countries You Want to Know About
The US doesn’t count gambling specifically illegal, there are just repercussions along the way. In 2006, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) was passed in the US. Although this act didn’t make gambling specifically illegal but it made transactions between residents and websites illegal.
Some people continued to play on gambling sites while few sites stopped taking US customers. However, in the last few years, some states introduced legislation that made online gambling legal and issued licenses to operate within the state. But still, some states debate over the issue.
The States that Allow Online Casinos & Gambling
Under the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement, New Jersey became the first United Nations state to start an online casino. Slowly, the government permitted many casinos to run online for New Jersey as these casinos bring millions of tax revenue per month.
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has permitted online casinos and other kinds of gambling in Pennsylvania. The rules and regulations are just like that in New Jersey. PokerStars has been the major driving force for the success of online poker in Pennsylvania.
The Michigan Gaming Control Board provides licenses, regulates, and permits online gambling and fantasy sports betting in Michigan. They were the 5th in the US to make online gambling legal. Michigan’s governor, Gretchen Whitmer signed the Lawful Internet Gaming Act in the year 2019.
The Blue Hen state (Delaware) permits all kinds of gambling except for sports betting. As of now, people in Delaware can’t bet via mobiles, even though in-person betting is a legal way there. Delaware was the 2nd state in the US to make gambling legal by signing the Landmark Supreme court decision in 2018.
Delaware Division of Gaming Enforcement is the organization that takes care of all the gambling and betting activities here.
After the West Virginia Lottery Interactive Wagering Act was passed in 2019, the West Virginia Lottery organization was made to regulate all the gambling activity there. The Act granted a permit to companies for interactive gambling and betting on slots, poker, lottery, and sports. Fantasy sports had been legal since 2016 in this state.
States In Process of Legalising Online Casinos
There are 6 states which have passed bills and 22 more in the process of doing the same regarding online casinos. The following is a list of regions which are having lobby groups uprising the topic of gambling and online casino and trying for policy amendments-
- New York
New York and Illinois raised questions about the digital sale of lottery tickets, which was responded to in 2011- saying that the Wire Act of ‘61 applies to wager on only sports events. This opened a gateway to make platforms of poker and casinos legal.
- Casinos that allow US players
States that Don’t Allow Gambling At All
The two states of Utah and Hawaii totally ban gambling because they believe in family atmosphere and ethics. Utah has religious beliefs as there is a huge Mormon community. Hawaii stands with its notion that gambling spoils the family atmosphere.
With the above two included, 38 states don't allow gambling at all, as they count gambling as an activity that shouldn’t be considered.
The list of these states goes as follows:
As there are many countries in Europe, each country is free to have its own legislation regarding online gambling and betting. Although the European Commission governs them to some extent and decides the Dos and the Don'ts, the law varies from state to state in the European region.
Know About Gambling Laws in the 4 Major Countries of Europe
ARJEL regulates license issues for online gambling in France. There are other two main regulators - Pari Mutual Urbain for horse racing and Francaise des Jeux for betting and lotteries.
In 2010, sports betting, horse race betting, and poker were legalized, followed by the passing of the bill in 2009 that legalized online gambling in France.
Currently, licenses for casino games, spread, or exchange betting are not issued.
EBGA compelled the legislation of 2008, stating that it broke the EU rules as it banned all forms of online gambling and betting. Further, in 2012- The Interstate Treaty on Gambling (ISTG) granted permits to provide gambling services in all states of Germany.
However, the state of Schleswig Holstein formed separate and more liberal legislation.
Germany being the biggest gambling market in all of Europe, still hovers upon the question of monopoly not being prevented through ISTG.
The revised laws of 2012 allowed operators in Spain to gain licenses and operate regionally under conditions. Spanish residents can play on any sites that are licensed by the country. Bet365 and William Hill are the biggest brands in the country.
In 2006, the Italian legislation permitted sports betting services in both online and offline modes. This was a time when many other European countries debated over the issue. Later, many revisions to the same legislation made it legal for granting licenses for poker and casino games to customers.
With ever-changing laws, some countries in Asia are quite liberal and some are very strict regarding gambling laws. Asia has been booming with the gambling industry from the time of Macau being one of the biggest star regions of Asia.
Many countries now have casinos specially for tourists and these make a big economic value.
There are countries that have banned gambling and have penalties for the same. However, online gambling is upscaling within some countries.
Here are the main countries of Asia and their scenarios with gambling discussed.
The communist government of China prohibits all types of gambling and betting games- both online and offline. Ones who play or provide any such games are slammed with criminal charges. They either have to pay a heavy penalty and/or even a jail sentence. Playing on overseas sites is also banned. However, lottery tickets are distributed (in an offline way), which are regulated by the government.
Land-based casinos in Macau outdoes the Las Vegas ones. There is no law here that is against gambling, so it doesn’t support nor is against gambling. Meaning, as it doesn’t showcase any support towards gambling, it doesn’t have online sites as licenses are not issued. Online betting is available on a limited basis from land-based casinos.
The Hong Kong Jockey Club(HKJC) regulates some forms of gambling in its jurisdiction. HKJC permits the residents to indulge in sports betting, horse race betting, football betting, and lottery. All other forms of gambling are illegal. Bookmakers operating illegally have to pay heavy penalties. Visitors in Hong Kong can indulge in not such betting.
Online gambling and betting don’t come under strict monitoring by the authorities here, but offline gambling of any sort is not allowed. People, however tend to indulge with bookmakers and other illegal operators at their own risk.
So, all sorts of online gambling receive active participation from Thailand residents. Offline gambling does have lottery ad horse race betting as an exception.
Being under the administration of the Islamic law of Sharia, there is an upscaling voice to ban gambling sites. However, gambling is not specified as a literal crime in Malaysia, it’s not screened or monitored. Residents avail gambling services from other countries and are active participants in all sorts of online gambling and betting games.
There are two main gaming authorities in the country, each dealing separately with different forms of gambling.
The first is PAGCOR- being the major one out of the two, it looks out for land-based casinos and bookmakers. Online gambling is also permitted but only on overseas sites. Not regional site is permitted to do so.
The other is the Cagayan region which is the only place in Asia to provide licenses for online gambling. It has its own rules and allows only tourists in the land-based casinos.
There is no law in India regarding online gambling, but gambling and betting in person are banned. Only two states of Sikkim and Goa have casinos and the rest of the states do not allow any forms of gambling. Horse race betting is a crime. Online betting and gambling is a big booming activity in India and the residents often choose overseas websites to play.
Online gambling doesn’t have any strict monitoring and so people do engage in the same actively. Coming to land-based gambling and casinos, there are only two casinos in Singapore. These are only for tourists and locals have to pay a hefty amount of money to get one-day passes for visiting the casinos. The locals are, however, not permitted to participate.
No law abides the citizens to gamble on foreign sites, the legislation in Canada makes it illegal for any gambling website to operate without a license from the government.
Some regions in Canada regulate gambling in their own regions and some governments have their own online betting and gaming outlets.
So, it's quite complicated. Even after such legislation, Kahnawake being a sovereign nation, has its own gambling legislation and has never been prosecuted after licensing over 300 websites.
- Casinos that allow Canadien players
The Gambling Act of 2005 permits all gambling and betting sites to have a remote gambling license, offering online gambling to UK citizens. In 2014, another Gambling Act was passed in addition to the previous one, which required foreign operators to have a UK license.
The United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC) in 2019 added new measures that require online casinos to verify their identity and age to play.
- Casinos that allow UK players
Australia And New Zealand
The Australian Interactive Gambling Act of 2001 (IGA) allows sports betting and lottery games but makes it illegal to supply online casino games from Australian companies to its residents. There's no law prohibiting Australians from using overseas gambling sites.
In New Zealand, most online betting and gaming forms are prohibited from companies based in the region. But the Gambling Act 2003 makes it legal for the residents to use sites from overseas.
- Casinos that allow New Zealand players
Africa is a comparatively new market for gambling and betting. Let’s have a look at some of the prime countries of Africa and their gambling laws.
Gambling and betting in South Africa have been long banned. But, irrespective of this, there were over 2000 illegal gambling houses in South Africa, until the new government applied the Gambling Act of 1996. The act made proper license creation procedure, put taxation of gambling and severe regulations came into play.
In 2004, a modified and even more restrictive Gambling Act was passed, followed by the Gambling Amendment Act of 2008 to decrease the monetization in the gambling business.
Even after such restrictive regulations, South Africa houses over 47 licensed casinos in over 35 cities.
- Casinos that allow South African players
Kenya has the 2nd highest casinos in Africa. It has a total of 13 casinos in various cities. It's an upcoming and a great country for setting up gambling, both online and offline.
Nigeria has 3 casinos, 2 in Abuja - the capital of Nigeria and 1 in Lagos. It has the strongest economy in Africa and saw a growth of gambling revenue from $18 Million to about $33 Million over the period of 2009 to 2014, which’s $10 Million more than Kenya.
So, just with 3 casinos, Nigeria outranked Keyna, making it high potential marketing for gambling and betting.
Latin America is one of the emerging and growing marketing in gambling and betting. A lot of companies have started seeing it as a profitable market. Let’s see the gaming license jurisdictions in the major countries of Latin America.
The Brazilian government does not pay much attention to gambling, this has led to a complicated situation because the laws are outdated. All the gambling in Brazil takes place underground because all the luck-based games were made illegal long back.
When the law was passed, the internet didn’t exist, so online gambling has a green light in Brazil as the government has left it unregulated.
Argentina has a completely different approach to that of Brazil. All kinds of gambling games are completely legal here and are regulated by individual state governments instead of the central government. So, it’s quite straightforward, you can gamble in Argentina openly and freely!
Other Pages of Interest:
Frequently Asked Questions
Is online gambling expensive?
The minimum bet at most of the casinos is fairly low and you can always set your budget and stop after you have spent it all. It fairly depends upon you. You certainly don’t need thousands or hundreds of dollars to begin with.
Which casino games can I play online?
There's a range of games to select, starting from table games, card games, video poker games, slot games, and much more. Many casinos have a huge collection, so you would probably never fail to find the game of your choice.
Do online casinos offer fair games?
Most of the casinos use a computer program known as RNGs - Random Number Generators which produce fair results. So, you get a similar experience as if you’re playing a live casino. There is a minority of casinos that provide manipulated results to gain an unfair advantage, but these are easy to avoid.
Are casino winnings taxable?
It depends on where you’re playing from. Some countries have taxations and some don’t. Besides, it depends on whether you’re playing from overseas on a site that belongs to a country that collects tax. However, there are other factors involved as well because there’s no hard and fast rule. If you’re winning a huge amount, it's advisable to consult some professionals about tax liability.
How do I deposit and withdraw money?
Credit and debit cards are widely accepted. Not only this, E-wallets such as Paypal and Neteller are doing great as well. Anyway, in the end, it depends on where you live. The exact process would be different from casino to casino but usually, it's pretty simple and straightforward.
What are live dealer games?
They feature real-life dealers at real tables and they’re visually online on your computer screen. You play the game in the usual way and the dealers act on your instructions accordingly. It’s almost like playing at a land-based revenue.
What are casino bonuses?
They’re extra chips that are added to your account in exchange for your deposit or as an activity reward. They’re available to both new and existing customers.