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Online Gambling Lawyer

Volume: 12 Issue: 11
(November 2013)


News

The European Commission (EC) issued on 20 November its infringement actions against several Member States regarding the compliance of their online gambling legislation with the EU Treaty. The EC formally requested that Sweden ‘comply with EU rules on the free movement of services with regard to the regulation and supervision of its gambling monopoly’ and began proceedings against the Czech Republic, Lithuania, Romania, Belgium, Cyprus, and Poland. / read more

A cross-party group of 11 Bulgarian MPs proposed on 13 November to amend Bulgaria’s Gambling Act to remove the country’s 15% turnover tax for operators, replacing it with a 20% tax on GGR and a one-off fee to Bulgaria’s Gaming Board of €51,129 for licensees. / read more

The Hesse Ministry of the Interior (MoI), informed applicants for the 20 sports betting licences to be granted under the Interstate Treaty on Gambling on 14 November that none of the applicants meet the minimum requirements, despite the fact that the Higher Administrative Court of Hesse clearly stated in June that 14 out of the 41 applicants had satisfied requirements and were invited to take part in the negotiation phase. / read more

The Slovenian government published on 24 September a new draft Gaming Act, which will create one type of licence for both casinos and gaming venues and set the number of available licences initially at 30, while maintaining the single licences for lotteries and sports betting enjoyed by Loterija Slovenije and Sportna Loterija respectively. Both companies will become fully state-owned. / read more


Features

In October, the International Social Games Association published its Best Practice Principles. These guidelines form a starting point for the ISGA's framework for the self-regulation of the social gaming industry. Tom Grant, Partner at Harris Hagan, discusses each area of the guidelines and outlines the challenges ahead for the ISGA in its quest to successfully implement a self-regulatory framework. / read more

Following the opening up of three US states for online poker over the past year, attention has fallen not only on the details of each state's regulations, but on how attractive each state's online poker offerings will be to players. In particular for online poker is the issue of liquidity: having enough players online to create an experience that retains customers and profitability. Jeff Ifrah, Editorial Board Member and Griffin Finan both of Ifrah Law examine the benefits of online poker liquidity and how it might be achieved in the US. / read more

Thanks to the current regulatory environment in Germany, gambling operators are faced with a number of restrictions when it comes to advertising their offerings. The difficulty of advertising through traditional mediums - such as advertising online - is leading many gambling operators to seek alternative means of marketing, with a recent trend involving sports-related sponsorship. Matthias Spitz and Danny Engelhardt of Melchers Law firm examine this trend and how sports-related sponsorship fits into the regulatory regime in Germany. / read more

The expansion of the US market for regulated online gambling continues, although in the case of the US Virgin Islands, the US territory already has legislation to allow internet gaming in the form of its Internet Gambling and Enforcement Act, enacted back in 2002. Frank Catania, President at Catania Gaming Consultants, recounts the path that has led the US Virgin Islands to its current re-entry into online gambling regulation, and explores the implications of this for i-gaming elsewhere in the US as well as the unanswered questions facing the territory. / read more

The Swedish state gambling monopoly Svenska Spel announced on 8 October that it will end the use of player bonuses and rebate schemes in its offerings, as part of its gambling responsibility project. Peter Sederowsky and Mikael Rydkvist of Setterwalls analyse the reasoning behind this move, and in particular how this action fits into Svenska Spel's current aims, especially in the context of the newly approved higher payout percentages to be offered by Svenska Spel. / read more

The Singapore Government is in the process of conducting a study into possible measures to prevent online gambling inside the city-state. Singapore’s government views the current state of affairs in Singapore, as far as online gaming is concerned, as unsatisfactory, as foreign online operators can legitimately target Singaporeans, whereas the state gaming and betting operator is prevented from extending its legalised offerings onto the internet. Lau Kok Keng and Cherrin Wong of Rajah & Tann LLP, provide an overview of the gambling legislation in Singapore and the current inadequacy of the regulations to prevent online gambling. / read more

Pursuant to the current Portuguese Gaming Law, the operation and playing of games of chance is only permitted in casinos created by authorisation of the Government, after consultation with the General Inspectorate of Games and the Directorate General of Tourism. As for online gambling, whether based in Portugal or in a foreign country, the current Portuguese Gaming Law is absolutely silent. This means that, even though online gambling is treated as a game of chance for the purpose of the Portuguese Gaming Law, its practice in Portugal is not currently legal. / read more


About Online Gambling Lawyer

The monthly publication exploring legal issues affecting operators in online gambling and gaming, on a global basis. Topics covered included licensing, offshore operators, mobile gaming, gambling payments, fixture lists and database rights, online poker, social gaming and gambling, online liquidity, advertising, sports betting, in-play betting, eSports, fantasy sports (DFS), Bitcoin gambling, and gambling fraud, as well as in-depth discussion of legislation such as the Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive and the US Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (UIGEA)... / read more

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