Online gambling remains in the grey zone in Canada

Published on October 6, 2016 in Industry News

Canadian online gambling lawsOnline gambling is both legal and illegal in Canada. In the 1980’s the provinces and territories within Canada were given the power to decide if they would choose to allow gambling establishments or not. Some decided to establish casinos and others started their own lottery companies.

“The rise of online gambling has not yet affected
these laws as they are still in force.”

Currently Canadians can bet on sports as long as they place parlay bets on three or more matches, they can also participate in online poker at websites hosted in the country. The owner of PokerStars, the largest poker network on the planet, Amaya Gaming even has its headquarters based in Canada.

Online casinos for Canadians

Canadians are only allowed to participate in online casino services offered by the lottery corporations in their province or territory. Canadians are not restricted from playing offshore however offshore operators are prohibited from promoting their services in Canada. Lottery corporations such as the BCLC, the OLG, and Loto-Québec have launched their own online casinos, but they can’t provide a game variety as big as that which can be found in the more popular international online casinos. International casinos also tend to offer bigger and better promotions, bonus offers, and competitions.

Offshore gambling

Canada could follow the lead of the member states of the European Union and issue gambling licenses to operators and tax winnings by local players. Instead they choose to stick to their laws resulting in massive amounts of tax dollars going uncollected. Local operators will continue to struggle as most Canadians flock to international online casinos.

Online gambling will remain in the Canadian legal grey zone as measures to block access to unlicensed offshore gambling websites at an ISP level is met with a lot of resistance from both the local community and telecommunications regulators.