How Gambling in the UK is Designed to Protect Players & Reduce Problem Gambling

Written by Bob Rogers
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In the UK, the gambling market is considered one of the safest in the world. It is fully regulated by the UK Gambling Commission, which strictly enforces the rule of law according to the Gambling Act 2005.

This law applies to England and Wales, and to Scotland, and it covers every form of gambling in these countries. That means land-based casinos, retail sports betting, horse and dog racing trackside betting, gentlemen’s clubs, and of course a huge array of online casinos and sportsbooks.

Key Objectives for the Gambling Act 2005

When the Gambling Act 2005 came in, the UK government had 3 key objectives. To fulfill these objectives, in 2007 it brought in the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) to enforce these rules via licensing applications for a license with a framework laid out to enforce these rules.

1. Ensuring gambling is not used as a source or basis for crime. As such, one of the UKGC application perquisites is personal character due to diligence and company checks of any operator that applies for a UKGC license.

2. Making sure all gambling activities are transparent – that means clear game rules, giving all players open access to the games’ house edge or return to player (RTP), and all casinos must have clear and transparent terms and conditions.

3. Protecting the nation’s citizens from developing a problem gambling habit. This also includes protecting children/citizens from underage gambling as well as protecting vulnerable persons from the potential harms of gambling addiction.

If companies are found in breach of the framework surrounding these 3 points, they are fined heavily. For example, Casumo was fined £6 million for failure to identify players with potential problem gambling habits or that could be money laundering. It was the second time the online casino was caught. The fine rose from a 6-digit number to a 7-digit figure the second time around.

Bonus Rules & Terms - transparent rules that protect the vulnerable

One of the objectives of the UKGC is to ensure that, when casino players sign up for a casino bonus, the terms of the bonus are clearly laid out. If an online casino does not lay out the rules correctly, the issue is not in the player’s court but in the casino’s court.

Also, the bonus terms must I.e., many casinos offer no wagering slots which means any wins from free spins on these slots are paid back to the player into his or her real money balance. It is then available for withdrawal - at least kind of. The casino will write into the terms of the bonus a couple of prerequisites.

a) The player must bet the real money balance at least 1x. That means if you spin on a slot for £1.00 using your no wagering slots free spins winnings, and you win £0.80, that £0.80 win can now be withdrawn. In other words, if you win £100 from your no-wagering slots bets, you need to bet the £100 again and any winnings you get back you can withdraw.
b) Bonus terms must include ‘spin bet’ amount, maximum wins allowed, which slots are valid for the no wagering slots bonus, and so on.
c) Before a player can withdraw his or her winnings from the no wagering slots bonus, ID and address verification must be given. This is to prevent anyone under the age of 18 (the legal limit to gamble in the UK) from signing up claiming winnings.

Gambling in the UK Considered Safest in the World

With the UKGC watching over the UK online and land-based gambling markets, UK gambling is considered to be some of the best and safest in the world. It is relatively free from crime and money laundering while it offers players a safe, transparent, and ultimately fair gambling industry. Its reputation for being such a safe country to gamble in has seen gambling tourism in the country rise and the casino industry both online and offline has attracted huge foreign investments, which is rather unsurprising because the UK also happens to have one of the largest gambling markets in the world.

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Read 260 times Last modified on Friday, 29 October 2021 13:33
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Bob Rogers

Bob Rogers

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