Online casinos are very popular among players worldwide, yet it is illegal in most of the United States. However, there are approximately 70 countries in the world where online casinos are legal. It is very difficult to prosecute the illegal players of online casinos, as they do this right from their homes. Typically, remaining within the law is the responsibility of each player, as they are required to agree the terms and conditions of the online casino they choose to gamble in. as it is obvious, it is very important to obey to the rules and regulations of online casinos, in order to avoid any legal issues from appearing. There are some important things you need to know regarding the legality of online casinos in order to make sure you have a completely legal and good user experience when using such websites for gambling.
Check our list of the Safest and Most Reputable Online Casinos
Gambling Laws by Country
There are many countries in which online gambling is illegal, yet there are many countries and jurisdictions in which online gambling is already legal. Although you will find thousands of gambling sites over the internet, it is important to know whether you comply the legal rules before playing in an online casino. Here you can see some information regarding the law of gambling in specific parts of the world.
If you want to know more about the online casino industry, you can also consult our guide to Start Your Online Casino
In the United Kingdom, online casinos represent a great business, as online gambling is well regulated here. Anyone over the age of 18 is allowed to gamble online in the UK, where not only are gambling sites allowed by law to operate in this country, but they are also allowed to offer their services to UK residents.
The online gambling legislation varies widely thorough Europe’s countries, as some of them allow online gambling to operate legally, while others did not legalize it yet. As the gambling laws differ from a country to another in Europe, it is important to attentively check the local law before gambling in online casinos in your country.
In Canada, the law regarding online gambling is a bit unclear, as there are actually no laws to state that Canadian residents are not allowed to place a wager or play in online casinos using real money. Additionally, there are some provincial governments within Canada that operate online casinos, but at the same time, companies are illegal to operate betting sites in this country.
The legality of online casinos in the United States is a matter of difficulty, as long as the law is a bit complicated in this issue. The Wire Act of 1961 made interstate telephone betting illegal and the same rule applied later for online gambling. However, in 2006, a new act, called the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, was passed, and it changed things a bit, as it claimed that it was illegal for banks and financial institutions to process transactions from US residents in case they were linked to online gambling. This determined many online casinos not to accept US players anymore. Nowadays, several US states decided to introduce new online gambling legislation and regulation in order to license online casino sites within the US.
Watch this video to find out some online casino sites that accept US players:
In Australia, there is no law to prohibit Australian residents from gambling online, thus it is a legal activity in this country. However, the legislation of Australia specifies that it is illegal to provide residents with interactive gambling games.
Explaining the Gambling Jurisdiction and Licensing Authorities
As specified before, the legislation regarding online gambling differs depending on the country, so that there are online casinos that are allowed to function, while there are countries which strongly prohibit the use and function of online casinos on their territory or by their residents. Any region in which gambling sites and such related operators are licensed and regulated is known as a gambling jurisdiction. Each of the existing jurisdictions has an organization that is responsible with issuing and regulating the licensing in this matter, and these organizations are known as licensing authorities. Every online gambling site that wishes to function legally needs to hold a license issued by its licensing authority. It basically depends on the players themselves to check whether an online casino website is properly licensed before using it, in order to avoid further legal issues for using the chosen online casino.
There are a variety of jurisdictions that license and regulate online casinos. Some of the most popular jurisdictions in the world are the following:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- Costa Rica
- Isle of Man
- Netherland Antilles/Curacao
The different issues in the different gambling fields
Some of the problems that might occur when playing online casino games include not being paid for the money you win. For this, it is important to always play in online casinos that accept players from your country or region.
Casino Games - (Roulette, Blackjack, Slots)
Playing online Roulette is also depending on the country or region. While it is perfectly legal to play online roulette in some countries, it might be completely illegal to do this in other countries.
As in what regards playing Blackjack in online casinos, it is legal to play it for real money and you can easily find plenty of online casinos where you can play it legally. However, while some online casinos accept US players, there are also other online casinos that only accept international players. Even more than that, you can find online casinos which offer their players the opportunity to play blackjack games with live dealers. However, it is important to always be aware about responsible online gambling in order to avoid any possible legal issues.
Basically, the same rules apply for slots played in online casinos. While you can find some online casino sites accepting US players, there are also a variety of online casinos which only accept international players in their site. It depends on you to find out whether it is legal for you to play casino games from your country or region, in order to avoid any legal issues that might occur.
In what regards the legality of poker, it sometimes differs from online casino gambling, yet many of the same legal issues apply to poker as well. Online poker is legal in many countries, especially including United Kingdom and several nations of the Caribbean Sea.
Here you can see a video on legal issues regarding online poker:
Sports betting is illegal in the United States and thus it is important to know that US players should not risk betting in sports over online casinos or telephone. US residents who are caught using sports betting online might be seriously prosecuted by law.
Although land based bingo is perfectly legal within the United States, online bingo still brings questions regarding its legality. US residents can play online bingo legally, and by doing this, they won’t break any laws. Even more, they can easily get paid for playing online bingo. There are several legal bingo websites used in the US.
Unfortunately, while some online casinos are functioning perfectly legal and offer good gambling experiences to their players, there often happens that gambling sites made different frauds, such as refusing to pay withdrawals or using certain cheating software. These are known as rogue casinos.
One of the main legal issue regarding online casinos includes minor protection. In most countries, it is the gambling operators who must ensure that specific policies and procedures are implemented in order to promote responsible gambling and to protect minors. The terms and conditions of each online casino needs to clearly specify that gambling is prohibited for minor players and the gambling operators must ensure that these websites are not being used by underage people.
Finding out whether an online casino is legal
You may find more information regarding this topic in our article: How to Select Good and Reliable Online Casinos.
Are all legal?
All over the world, federal and local laws are developed in order to restrict online casinos, but there are also laws that allow gambling function as legal. While the gambling laws differ widely from a country to another, it is very difficult to decide whether all the online casinos are legal or not, so it basically depends on the players to find out whether the online casino they wish to use are legal or not in their country or region.
How to find out?
There are several ways that you can use in order to find out whether it is legal for you to use the desired online casino or not.
1.First of all, you need to ensure that the online casino you wish to use for gambling is working under a legally issued license.
2.Then, you need to conduct your own research to find out whether the desired online casino is legitimate and trustworthy.
3.You need to ensure that the content used on the online casino is original and unique, as fake online casinos tend to share their content.
eCogra is the acronym used for eCommerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance, which is a leading accredited testing agency that was founded in the United Kingdom in 2003 and which is specialized in the certification of online gaming software and systems. This means that eCogra gives its best in order to ensure that online gambling is safely used by its players.
In this video, you can find some information regarding eCogra:
Money laundering is a very serious legal issue and in many jurisdictions, it constitutes a criminal offence. Unfortunately, it has covered the online gambling field as well, as some people create gambling accounts using a fake identity and place a certain amount of money into that account. Then, they place equal bets in the roulette table on red and black fields and also they place a small bet on the zero field at the same time. After this, the person who is known as money launderer withdraws the winnings from the account and then requests for a document that shows that the money is made by legitimate winnings.
There are some legal issues related to online casinos. Basically, the law differs from a country and region to another and it depends on the player to ensure that it is legal to use online casinos in the country or region of residence.
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