In the further part of the article, we present individual issues based on the unified text of the so-called Gambling Act. For people who want to read the provisions of the Act in their original wording, we provide the appropriate links at the end of the text.
Gambling – definition
In the beginning, it is good to specify what exactly is understood by the legislator under the term “gambling games”. Well, they include:
card games (poker, blackjack, baccarat),
slot machine games,
and games of chance, which include:
lotteries (cash, raffle, promotional and audio-text),
bingo game (money or raffle),
cylindrical games (e.g. roulette),
An important issue is the fact that these games are conducted for cash or material prizes, so in the case of, for example, poker with matches, the provisions of the gambling activities do not apply. On the other hand, the question of whether gambling is organized in a traditional form or whether it is gambling over the Internet does not matter anymore – in the sense that the Act specifies the rules for both types of games.
Gambling – permits
Entities that meet certain requirements may apply for a permit to operate in the organization of other gambling games. When it comes to a land-based casino license, apart from the need to meet several conditions, the limit of the number of casinos that can operate in a given area is also important. According to the provisions of the gambling act, in a given town, for every 250,000 residents can operate 1 land casino, while in each province there can be no more than 1 casino per 650 thousand. people. Legal casinos also operate on seagoing ships and passenger ferries.
On the other hand, other types of gambling games – mutual wagering – may be offered by companies that have received a permit from the Minister of Finance to provide bookmaking services. A separate license is issued for operating through a network of stationary points, and a separate license for arranging sports betting via the Internet (the company may apply for one or both types of permits). Also, in this case, obtaining a license is not easy, first of all, the company must meet formal requirements, such as, for example, have the required share capital or have an appropriate legal form. Secondly, it is necessary to submit an application and many documents regarding the planned activity and the company itself. In the case of a bookmaker license, there is no limit to the number of permits issued. However, both the permit to run a casino and the organization of bookmakers is issued for 6 years with the possibility of its extension.
Player identity and age verification
For players, the provision of the age of the majority of people who want to participate in gambling is also very important. This provision is designed to protect the youngest Internet users and potential adolescent gamers who, according to research, are most prone to gambling addiction. The age restriction is of course the most important for minors because they have neither the right to enter the casino nor to enter the online casino or open websites run by illegal bookmakers. However, the legal provisions in this matter also indirectly affect those players for whom gambling is fully accessible by law. Well, to be able to comply with the regulations, it is necessary to implement a player verification procedure. Anyone who enters a land-based casino must identify themselves using an ID and receive an entry card confirming successful registration.
n turn, those players who are interested in online gambling are required to register an individual player account on a given website (both on the online casino website and the betting sites). It is always obligatory to provide your real personal data in the registration form, but it is not enough – it is also necessary to send a scan or photo of your identity document. On this basis, the gambling organizer verifies the identity and legal age of the player, and if everything is fine, activates the user’s account. If there are any reservations, as a rule, more documents should be sent.
Responsible Gaming Rules
The Gambling Act requires organizers of gambling games to prepare and implement the rules of responsible gaming. Land-based casinos, online casinos, and bookmakers – online and stationary – are required to do so. It is a mandatory point of applying for a permit to organize a given gambling game – the regulations must be presented with the application for a license or concession and be approved by the Minister of Finance. At the time of launching an activity (and of course afterward as well), it must be displayed in a prominent place and players should be able to familiarize themselves with it before starting the game. Its main task is to protect players from gambling addiction, and the act specifies exactly what type of information must necessarily be included in the regulations of this type.
The rules of responsible gaming certainly specify how the age of users will be verified by a given gambling organizer and how the registration of users will look like. It must also anticipate and describe the mechanisms by which users will be able to control their own game and automatically block those players who run out of funds for the game. There are also important issues regarding informing users, for example, about the organizer or the permit to gamble, about the ban on games for minors, the risk of becoming addicted to gambling, or institutions that help addicts.