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Is Gambling Illegal in UK ?

Online gaming has become a major part of the British economy, alongside banking, retail, and services, with gambling in its diverse forms becoming a favorite pastime for most of the Brits. The UK is home to some of the oldest and largest bookmakers and the industry is very well regulated by the government to protect players. There are many advantages for UK punters and gamblers. To start off, gambling in the UK is legal for anyone over 18 and the government enforces some of the most rigorous regulations on betting operators to ensure a safe and fair environment. Plus, there’s no tax on gambling wins. Considering how many countries have vague standing on gambling, we have it pretty good, eh? Is Gambling Illegal in UK ?



Gambling Laws across the world are very crucial and important to follow if you want a successful casino both land based and online.  The Gambling Commission in the United Kingdom was set up under the Gambling Act 2005 to regulate commercial gambling in the UK. As from October 1, 2013 they also took over the responsibilities of the National Lottery Commission to regulate the National Lottery under the National Lottery etc. Act 1993 .

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UK Gambling Commission

The Gambling Commission was created by the Gambling Act 2005, and it regulates all forms of gambling, lottery, and bingo in the UK. This includes both land-based and online forms of gaming. The only aspect not regulated by the Gambling Commission is spread betting, which is overseen by the Financial Conduct Authority.


The primary function of the Gambling Commission is to see that the three objectives laid forth by the Gambling Act 2005 are met. In short, it’s the commission’s job to ensure all forms of gambling are hosted in a safe and fair manner while offering protections for children and vulnerable adults.

The Whitelist

The Gambling Act 2005 forbids all foreigners and those without a Gambling Commission license from advertising their services to customers in the UK. The whitelist makes exceptions to the advertising ban for certain jurisdictions that prove they meet the standards set forth by the Gambling Act 2005.

Operators with licenses in any of the following jurisdictions are considered “whitelisted” and may offer their services to customers in the UK. Some of the biggest names in gambling (such as William Hill) are based out of these jurisdictions in order to take advantage of friendlier tax laws.


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