Casino license is an especially important component of every online casino. Its acquisition confirms that the company works legally and can ensure money withdrawals for the players. You can find some great licensed casinos at Best Online Casino Rating List 2020.
A gambling license is necessary not only for the casinos but for other gambling activities as well – sports betting, casino software providers, poker rooms, lotteries, etc.
It is worth mentioning that there are several different licenses available when it comes to online gambling. In this article, we will take a detailed look at the most popular types of licenses, their characteristics, acquisition procedures. Also, we will find out why the casino gaming license is important to you, to the player.
Casino license – what it is and why is it needed?
As we mentioned before, a casino license is a confirmation from the country it was issued in that the applicant company meets its requirements and can work legally.
These requirements might differ depending on the country, however, most of them do implement checks on the company executives, financial condition analysis, raise security and consumer data protection requirements, checks if the company is not involved in any money laundering schemes, and so on.
In order to get a license, a company has to provide many confirmed documents about its activity, directors, and applicable systems. If evaluators decide that the company does not meet requirements then the licence is not being granted or grant is deferred.
Why is a licence needed for the casino to work? During the registration procedures to the casino websites, users share their personal information. That involves their credit card, passport, ID, address information, and so on. An online casino without license could use your information for criminal purposes without any surveillance. The licence confirms that the company is trustworthy, can work properly, and ensure the security of your money and personal information.
Malta license – Malta Gaming Authority (MGA)
This gaming license can be often found in European online gambling sites. MGA began to issue licences back in 2001 and in order to acquire it, the applicant needs to register his company in Malta.
When all the necessary documents are prepared and a three-year business plan is formed, a company can send their gaming license application to Malta Gaming Authority. Then, MGA has one month to consider if the company meets all the requirements.
Those who receive a positive answer will be granted with a temporary license which is valid for 6 months. During this time the company’s activities will be monitored and if it does everything properly then it can expect to receive a long-term license which will be valid for 5 years.
Those who want to acquire a Malta license will have to pay a 2 300€ application processing fee. If the application is confirmed then the company will have to pay a one-time 25 000€ licensing fee. It is worth mentioning that the holders of this licence also have to pay an annual fee (around 3%) which depends on their income. This fee is not applicable during the first year.
Types of MGA license
Malta Gaming Authority offers several types of licences:
Class 1 – a license for online casinos. Games there must work using Random Number Generator (RNG);
Class 2 – this licence is required for sports betting operators;
3 Class – it is a type of license which can be used in poker rooms, for bingo games as well as in betting exchanges;
Class 4 – this license is for the casino software providers.
User registration procedure
Casino wishing to obtain this licence has to guarantee several important things in user registration procedure:
Confirmation of age and identity – casino can ask for a copy of your driver license, ID, or passport. If you are underage or if the provided documentation is not valid then the registration will not be accepted;
Address confirmation – in order to guarantee the safety of your account casino must ask for the proof of your address. Utility bill or bank statement should work for the confirmation;
Payment confirmation – casino companies may ask for a photo of your credit card or for a screenshot from your online banking. It is done in order to confirm that the credit card is yours and it is not stolen.
Always provide correct personal information when you are registering for an online casino. Otherwise, you might not be able to complete the registration procedure and then you will have to spend your time trying to change the wrong information.
Malta Gaming Authority pays special attention to responsible gambling. As a result, casinos with this licence have to implement several tools which can ensure it:
Deposit limits – every user must have an option to set the deposit limits for a specific time;
Bet limits – it as a tool which allows setting your betting limits for a certain time;
Loss limits – an option to set the limits for your losses;
Besides that, casinos should constantly implement additional measures that can ensure responsible gambling as well as provide a self-exclusion option for the players.
MGA states that players should only contact them in case the casino violates the rules of the licence. If there is any trouble with payment confirmation, games are not working properly and so on, then a player should contact the casino first.
United Kingdom license – UK Gambling Commission
It is a prestigious licence which is necessary for gambling companies to work legally in the United Kingdom. The UK Gambling Commission supervises casinos, sports betting companies, lotteries, and other gambling institutions. This license can be only granted for the companies with an impeccable reputation which meet these requirements:
Identity and management – it is important to know who is the person applying and if the company is suitable to carry out gambling activities;
Finances – the financial history of the applicant is being analyzed. Also, the company needs to have enough financial resources to properly manage an online casino;
Integrity – the applicant company has to operate openly, reliably and in good faith;
Competences – the applicant must have enough knowledge, experience, and ingenuity in order to operate a gambling company;
Criminal history – persons related to the company must not have any criminal history.
Types of UKGC license
According to the gambling activity, UKGC issues different licenses:
Common betting operation license;
Betting exchange license;
Betting broker license;
License for the lotteries.
It is worth mentioning that if the company wants to carry out several gambling activities on one website like a casino, sports betting, bingo, poker, and so on, then several different licenses will be required.
Those who are planning to make an account in the casino which has a UKGC license will have to go through a KYC (know your customer) verification process. Players will be asked to provide the proof of identity, address proof as well as the payment proof.
Responsible gambling and players protection
Holders of the United Kingdom license must ensure that there are tools in use which can help players gamble responsibly – deposit limits, betting limits, loss limits, self-exclusion option, and so on.
When it comes to player protection you should only contact UKGC (Gambling Authority UK) if the casino engages in illegal activities or if all the other options have been tried. It is worth mentioning that gambling companies with this licence are known for their extremely high reliability so there should not be any problems with them.
Curacao license – offshore license
Usually, smaller companies wish to save some money and try to avoid the acquisition of expensive licenses. So, they open the company in one of the Caribbean islands and obtain an offshore license.
The most popular of the offshore licenses is the Curacao e Gaming license. Curacao is a small island near the coast of South America which legally belongs to the Netherlands but in fact, it has its own central government and is almost an autonomous state. Curacao began issuing gambling licences back in 1996.
Type of the license
Curacao offers only one type of licence which includes all gambling activities. It is called a master licence and can be used for the operation of online casinos, sports betting websites, betting exchanges, poker rooms, and so on. Obtaining this license together with the company registration in Curacao island costs around 25 000€.
Responsible gambling and player protection
Since 2014 Curacao belongs to CFATF (Caribbean Financial Action Task Force) organization. As a result, casinos with this licence must follow strict anti-money laundering and anti-terrorism policies.
Even though casinos with Curacao license had a pretty bad reputation for many years when it comes to player protection and their service, this situation is constantly improving. There are many regulations and policies being implemented for certain countries.
However, it is worth mentioning, that in case there is an argument between a player and the casino, Curacao does not interfere and cannot solve the problem. So, casinos with Curacao license are less safe than the ones with European licenses. It is always recommended to check out reviews of other players before playing in a casino with this licence.
Curacao also applies responsible gambling requirements for gambling companies. Even though the registration procedure is usually very easy and players do not even need to provide their personal documents, most of the online casinos offer tools to limit your deposit or losses.
Gibraltar gambling license – GBGA
It is also one of the prestigious European gambling licenses. This small country began to issue gaming licences back in 2006 and has very strict requirements for all those filling the applications.
First of all, a detailed inspection of everyone related to the company. Secondly, the applicant company has to meet anti-money laundering requirements and have a reliable monitoring system which can block the road for criminal activities
Gambling license Gibraltar – its types
GBGA license has several options for various gambling activities:
Bookmaker and betting intermediary license;
Gambling machine licence;
Remote Gambling license.
Most of the online casinos seek to obtain a remote gambling license so they can have a prestigious license and focus on the customers from Europe.
Players registration procedure
Like in the casinos that have MGA or UKGC license, users will have to provide documents which can prove the player’s identity and address. This procedure is necessary in order to ensure the customer’s safety.
Players protection and responsible gambling
HM Government of Gibraltar put a lot of effort in order to ensure responsible gambling. All the new players have to go through the inspection procedure. Its purpose is to make sure the player has not submitted a request not to gamble as well as if the player does not have recorded problems with gambling.
In addition, every player at the casino with Gibraltar license must have an option to limit his deposit, losses, or playing times as well as the option to self-exclude.
It is worth mentioning that the Government of Gibraltar requires casinos to organize regular training for their employees so they could have enough knowledge on how to spot an irresponsible gambling case and how to deal with it.
When it comes to player protection, the situation here is quite similar to the UKGC license. Players should only contact the Commission if the company violates license rules. All the other complaints should be dealt with by the casino.
The MOST asked questions about Casino Licenses
Casino licence – what is this ❓
It is a confirmation that the company is working legally, comply with the provisions, and can ensure payouts for the players.
Why gaming license is required ❓
During the registration procedure players share their personal information, bank details, and make payments. The license confirms that the company is trustworthy, can properly work, and ensure the safety of your money and information.
Which casino licenses are the most popular ❓
Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), Curacao e-Gaming, and UK Gambling Commission licenses are the most popular ones.
Which casino licenses are the safest ones ❓
European licenses like UKGC, Gibraltar’s, or Malta’s are the safest.
Is the Curacao e Gaming license safe ❓
✅ Yes, the majority of online casinos that have this licence are completely safe. However, to be a hundred percent sure, read some reviews before playing. You can find plenty of casino reviews in the Casino News section.
Is it safe to play at the casino which does not have a license ❓
Never play in casinos that do not have a license. You will be in danger of being scammed by doing that.
How much is gambling license cost ❓
It depends. Curacao gaming license may cost around 25 000€ in total while Gibraltar gambling license may cost over 100 000€ per year.
Other gaming licenses
Besides all the licenses mentioned above, sometimes players may come across other gambling licenses like Swedish Gambling Authority, Italy Gambling Licence, Alderney, Antigua & Barbuda, Costa Rica license, and so on. It is worth mentioning that it is not recommended to play in the casinos which have unknown licenses as you would risk being scammed.
In addition, it is always advised to read other player reviews of the casino before playing. In this way, you can be sure that the company is trustworthy and will be able to pay out your winnings.