Aug 31

Live sports betting now available at these authorized websites.

Live Sports Betting Now Available in Canada at These Authorized Websites

The wait is finally over. Locally authorized single-game and live betting on sports is not just a dream anymore. It’s not a piece of legislation moving through Parliament. It’s real, and its here, and its available right now at most provincial iGaming websites.

We’ll tell you which Canadian online sportsbooks are offering the newly regulated form of sports betting, and which types of wagers they’re offering. We’ll also offer some alternative options for those of you residing in a province or territory where legal live betting and single-game wagers are not (yet) available.

Single & Live Sports Betting in Canada

Let’s cut right to the chase. The following is an alphabetical chart that details which provinces and territories offer which types of online sports betting, if any. Note that live betting and single-game betting are Canada’s newly authorized ways to bet on sports. Parlay wagers refer to the old, multi-pick style of betting that’s been around for decades.

Continue below the chart to learn more about the individual sports gambling opportunities in each location.

LocationLive BettingSingle-GameParlay Bets
Alberta
British Columbia
Manitoba
New Brunswick
Newfoundland & Labrador
Northwest Territories
Nova Scotia
Nunavut
Ontario
Prince Edward Island
Quebec
Saskatchewan
Yukon

Please note that the information in the above chart is current as of writing (Aug 31, 2021). Some locations were not able to launch an expanded sports betting platform on opening day (August 27, 2021). Alberta, for example, has made clear its intentions to launch single-game and live betting options in the fall.

Alberta

All gambling activities are regulated by Alberta Gaming Liquor and Cannabis (AGLC), which operates the online gambling portal, PlayAlberta.ca. The website is not yet equipped with any form of sports betting. However, the regulators stated in early August that a full sports betting regiment would come to the website sometime this fall.

British Columbia

The British Columbia Gaming Corp (BCLC) is responsible for all gaming in the province. BCLC operates the online gambling portal, PlayNow.com. Through this website, sports fans can participate in all major forms of sports betting, including single-game bets, live bets and classic parlays. The website is also available to legal-age residents of Manitoba.

Manitoba

The Manitoba Liquor, Gaming and Cannabis Authority (LGCA) signed an agreement with BCLC years ago to share use of its website, PlayNow.com. The shared player contract gives Manitobans access to the same single-game, live, and parlay betting options as BC residents.

New Brunswick

Part of Atlantic Canada, all gaming in New Brunswick is regulated by the Atlantic Lottery Corp (ALC). Through its website, ALC.ca, sports bettors can access everything from parlays, props, and futures, to single-game and fantasy betting. However, there is no live betting available at this time.

This information also applies to the provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador, and Prince Edward Island.

Newfoundland & Labrador

See New Brunswick.

Northwest Territories

None. While the Northwest Territories offers retail lottery and Sports Select wagering through the Western Canada Lottery Corp (WCLC), there is no option to bet online. According to the WCLC, its Sports Select platform will soon include single-game betting, but again, it appears it’s going to be retail (in-person) only.

The exact same information applies to the territories of Nunavut and Yukon.

Nova Scotia

None. Although Nova Scotia is a part of Atlantic Canada, the province does not authorize access to the region’s ALC.ca online gambling portal. All sports betting must be done in person through a retail outlet.

Nunavut

See Northwest Territories.

Ontario

All gambling activities are regulated by the Ontario Lottery & Gaming Corp (OLG), which offers internet gambling options through its website, PlayOLG.ca. Last week, the Crown Corporation launched what it calls “Pro-Line+”, a new version of the original parlay-only Pro-Line platform that now offers single-game betting, as well as live betting.

Prince Edward Island

See New Brunswick.

Quebec

Loto-Quebec, regulator of all gaming activities in the province, dove head-first into the expansion of sports betting laws with the launch of in-store, online and mobile “mise-o-jeu”. You can participate in classic parlays, singles and live wagering, with a convenient mise-o-jeu mobile app for betting on the go. If you prefer to place your bets in person, you can fill out a slip on your mobile device, generating a barcode that you can scan in-store.

Saskatchewan

None. Saskatchewan has yet to prescribe to the online gambling industry. All gaming activities, including sports betting, must be conducted in person at a casino or authorized ticket retail location.

Yukon

See Northwest Territories.

Betting on Sports Outside Canada’s Regulatory Border

While other sportsbooks like theScore Bet and PointsBet are working diligently to get licensed and operational here in Canada, none have done so yet. If your home province or territory does not offer the type of online sports betting you’re looking for, you still have options.

Online gambling with offshore, internationally regulated websites is not illegal. They just aren’t regulated by any Canadian authority. So long as you’re access highly reputable, responsibly regulated sportsbooks, you have nothing to worry about.

The key to enjoying a safe and secure experience in single and live sports betting with overseas websites is to do your homework. First and foremost, identify the regulatory authority. The most reputable are the European jurisdictions of Gibraltar, Isle of Man, Malta and the UK. Anything licensed in Central America (Costa Rica, Curacao, Panama, etc.) may be circumspect.

Reputation also goes a very long way. Look for a website that has been up and running for at least a few years. Check out watchdog websites like Casinomeister to confirm there are no ongoing reports of customer abuse or payment issues. All it takes is a few minutes of your time to ensure you’re signing up and depositing with a reliable sportsbook.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Aug 16

Sports betting wins Canada access to billion-dollar industry.

New Legal Sports Betting Wins Canada Access to Billion-Dollar Industry

In just eleven days, single-event betting on sports will become legal in Canada. It is to represent the beginning of a new era in Canadian gambling laws, and the closure of a decades-old requirement that all sports wagers be placed on multiple results (i.e. parlays).

The future of gambling ushers in on Friday, August 27, 2021, more than 40 days after the federal government passed Bill C-218; the Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act.

Canadians Can Bet on Sports Games Aug 27, 2021

The announcement came down the wire last week from Canada’s Minister of Justice and Attorney General, David Lametti. He made quite the show of it, too. Where better to announce such a momentous occasion than the Fallsview Casino Resort in Niagara Falls, Ontario? And by the sound of it, he may be among the first to do so come next Friday.

“Provinces and territories will be able to offer single event sport betting products, like wagering on the Grey Cup, game seven of the Stanley Cup Finals, or the Super Bowl,” Lametti declared with seemingly ardent anticipation.

With a date set, the role of the Canadian government in legalizing single-event sports wagers has come to an end. It’s now up to the provinces and territories, noted in Lametti’s speech, to authorize and regulate such activities. Most have already set that legislative ship in motion in anticipation of this day.

New Legal Sports Betting Wins Canada Access to Billion-Dollar Industry

No doubt casinos and mobile sports betting operators spent a long weekend celebrating Thursday’s official proclamation. They’ve been eagerly awaiting this transition for a very long time.

Over the next five years, Canada’s gambling industry is expecting to handle near $28 billion in betting action. That’s good news for the provinces and territories that will be hosting these operations, too. They will, for the first time, generate revenue from single-sport betting in Canada. Up until now, those billions have been flowing into offshore online sportsbooks, failing to provide any benefit to local communities back home.

“These changes to the Criminal Code will allow provinces and territories to use revenues to fund programming, such as health care or education, as they do with other lottery revenues,” said Lametti.

This argument was perhaps the most convincing catalyst for change. Politicians who were formally opposed to any expansion of gambling found it hard to dispute the loss of so much revenue to international operators, holding no responsibility to the overseas markets they access.

Aug 27 it’s Legal, with Actual Launch Dates to Come

The real question is, when will Canadians actually be able to place those wagers? August 27 is the date it will become legal. That doesn’t necessarily mean provincial regulators will be ready that day. But a few surely will.

It’s safe to assume British Columbia and Ontario will be first to market. Gaming regulators with the BC Lottery Corp (BCLC) and the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp (OLG) both said Thursday they have products ready to launch. Ontario’s government has confirmed that its policies are designed to create a competitive marketplace for private sportsbook operators.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , ,

Jul 23

Anticipating the launch date for legal sports betting in Canada.

FAQ & Expected Launch Date for Legal Sports Betting in Canada

Like most major countries of the world, sports is a very big deal here in Canada. We love our ice hockey, just as Brits love soccer, Australians love Aussie rules, and Americans love baseball (and basketball, and football, and boxing – I could go on.) It doesn’t have to be hockey, though. Like Americans, we Canadians are drawn all sorts of major sporting leagues, from CFL and NFL football, to NBA basketball. (Go Raptors!)

Now, like so many other major countries, Canadians will soon have a legal and locally regulated means of betting on sports. Not just low-odds parlay bets, either, but real, bettor-friendly, single-event wagers. The kinds of bets that attract genuine sports fans. We’re talking about everything from game winners and point totals, to futures and live in-play betting.

Speaking of futures, now that the government has legalized single-game betting, what’s the future look like for Canadian sports fans?

Canada Sports Betting FAQ

This FAQ will answer some of the most common questions, including how soon we can expect live and online sportsbooks to launch in Canada. But first…

Is Single-Game Sports Betting Really Legal in Canada?

Yes! On June 22, 2021, The Senate passed Bill C-218, otherwise known as the Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act. Exactly one week later, on June 29, 2021, the measure received Royal Assent, officially enacting it into law.

The Summary of the legislation reads:

This enactment amends paragraph 207(4)‍(b) of the Criminal Code to make it lawful for the government of a province, or a person or entity licensed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council of that province, to conduct and manage a lottery scheme in the province that involves betting on a race — other than a horse-race — or fight, or on a single sport event or athletic contest.”

Wait – was sports betting illegal before?

Not exactly. It was illegal for any provincial regulator to provide anything more than multi-pick, parlay betting. Provinces have done this for years, promoting it as a sports lottery. And it was illegal for any Canadian-based company to offer any form of gambling without provincial authorization. However, there’s nothing illegal about placing bets with international sports betting websites. So long as they have no physical presence in Canada, they are not bound by Canadian law.

The only real difference before and after the passage of Bill C-218 is that Canadians will now be able to place single bets with locally licensed and regulated sportsbooks (not just the international variety), and our own government will profit from it.

Will All Provinces and Territories Adopt Single-Game Sports Betting?

Most likely, yes, with the sole exception (maybe) of the territory of Nunavut. Nunavut is the only region that may choose to refrain, simply because commercial gaming has never been authorized there.

At present, Canada’s 10 provinces, plus the Northwest Territories and Yukon, offer the current parlay-style sports lottery. Most of of them also provide casino games and lotteries, either online, on land, or both. It would certainly make sense that these jurisdictions would want to work quickly to convert to single-game sports betting in the digital and retail space.

Will There Be Online Sportsbooks in Canada?

Absolutely! As previously stated, most jurisdictions already promote a locally operated online gaming portal. There’s no doubt that the new rules will be applied to both retail and online sports betting operations. In fact, some provinces were so eager for legalization, they were prepared for launch the moment the law went into effect.

British Columbia Lottery Corp (BCLC) has already made clear its intentions to launch an online sportsbook the moment they are legally capable and prepared to do so. It says it right on their iGaming portal, PlayNow.

Is There a Launch Date for Sports Betting in Canada?

This is the question everyone wants answered – when will single-game betting arrive in Canada? Unfortunately, no one is talking about actual dates yet. In fact, regulators aren’t talking much at all, except to say that sportsbooks are coming. That leaves us with little more than the obvious speculation that a launch could and should occur sometime this Fall.

Why in the Fall, you ask? Well, for one, regulatory guidelines and licensing stipulations must still be written, and there isn’t a lot of summer left to work with. Second, provincial regulators are hoping to get the ball rolling as quickly as possible, because as the old saying goes – “time is money”. And third, the 2021-22 NHL season gets underway October 12. This should light a big enough fire beneath local legislators to get the job done, post haste.

What Commercial Sportsbooks are Coming to Canada?

There’s little doubt that all of Canada’s provincial iGaming portals will launch a sportsbook. What makes this new legislation so interesting, however, is that commercial operators are being given permission to compete – not just in the retail market, like casinos, but in the virtual market. Never before has Canada’s online gambling industry been allowed to host competition within jurisdictions.

It’s too early to devise a definitive list of what companies are going to compete in this upcoming market, assuming provinces choose to let them. Licensing guidelines have yet to be finalized, and until they are, license applications cannot be submitted for appraisal. Even then, there are no guarantees – except maybe one. Canada will cater to its home-town-hero sports betting brand, theScore Bet.

Of all the commercial operators looking to expand from the US market into Canada, theScore is the only one with roots deeply embedded in the Great White North. Another highly-likely competitor is PointsBet. That company recently launched an all new Canadian Operations team, appointing CEO Scott Vanderwel and CCO Nik Sulsky. If nothing else, PointsBet’s determination to penetrate the market is indubitably clear.

Here’s a list of operators you can expect to see opening Canadian sportsbooks (in order of most-probable), and why we think they’ll be approved to do so.

theScore Bet – Based out of Toronto, theScore runs one of the nation’s most popular sports media brands. This company might as well already have the license in hand.

PointsBet – These guys have set up an entire Canadian division for their company, complete with executive figureheads. They’ll stop at nothing to get a foot in the door.

DraftKings – This brand already operates online and mobile DFS betting in Canada, and is a respected member of the Canadian Gaming Association.

FanDuel – This is another brand that already operates online and mobile DFS betting in Canada.

Caesars – A global brand, this one owns and operates Caesars Windsor in Ontario, one of the largest integrated resort casinos in the country. It’s also an active member of the Canadian Gaming Association.

Hard Rock – An American based company, they own and operate the famous Hard Rock Vancouver in BC, and will soon open another Hard Rock Casino in the Canadian capital of Ottawa. They’re also is a member of the Canadian Gaming Association

BetMGM – Because Wayne Gretzy said so

What Sports Will Be Available for Betting?

Sports availability is sure to mimic the major events already available in certain US states. As we’ve seen there, variety will surely differ from one operator to the next. You can expect to find all major sportinging events and tournaments, including the following:

  • Baseball (MLB)
  • Basketball (NBA)
  • Football (CFL, NFL)
  • Golf (PGA Tour)
  • Hockey (NHL)
  • Olympic Games
  • Soccer (European, MLS)
  • Tennis (Grand Slam)

What is the Legal Age to Bet on Sports in Canada?

The legal age to gamble in Canada varies from one province and territory to the next. The following alphabetical chart shows the appropriate age for sports betting across the country.

Provinces and Territories of CanadaLegal Betting Age
Alberta18
British Columbia19
Manitoba18
New Brunswick19
Newfoundland & Labrador19
Northwest Terrorizes19
Nova Scotia19
Nunavut19
Ontario19
Prince Edward Island19
Quebec18
Saskatchewan19
Yukon19

What Payment Methods will be Available?

Like the sports categories themselves, availability of banking options will be determined by each operator. No doubt, debit cards will top every list, just as they do now on Canada’s provincially run iGaming portals. Canadian exclusive payment methods like Interac eTransfer are sure to get some attention, along with major web wallets like Paypal. If the US market is any indication, Canada’s sportsbooks may also look to employ the versatility of a Play+ prepaid gaming card.

All in all, I believe the payment options list for most Canadian sports betting sites will look something like this:

  • Visa
  • MasterCard
  • American Express
  • Play+ Prepaid Card
  • Interac Online
  • eCheck EFT
  • Online Bill Payment
  • Paypal
  • Web Cash
  • PayNearMe

Can I Still Bet at International Online Sportsbooks?

Yes. From a legislative perspective, there is still no reason Canadians can’t do their online betting with offshore operators. It’s never been illegal before, and recently enacted amendments to the law don’t change that. All they’ve done is make it legal for provincial regulators to offer the same single-game sports betting options we’re already able to access via international websites. If you’ve established a report with one of those operators, building your way up the VIP ladder as a loyal member, there’s no reason to stop now.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Mar 01

MP Waugh’s sports betting bill passes second reading with 303-15.

Waugh’s Sports Betting Bill Passes Reading 2 with 303-15 Vote

Canada is one step closer to legalizing single-event sports betting. Last week, a measure that had spent years undervalued in the political arena received near-unanimous consent in the House of Commons. I’m referring, of course, to MP Kevin Waugh’s (Conservative, Saskatoon – Grasswood) Bill C-218, introduced last year in an ongoing effort to decriminalize wagering on single sporting events. With C-218 garnering nods from 303 of the 318 members of the House of Commons, there’s only one step remaining before the bill becomes law, and virtually no opposition to stand in its way.

Wait… What Happened to Gov. Bill C-13?

Since November, everyone with an interest in the widespread legalization of sports betting in Canada has been awaiting the results of Government Bill C-13. That bill, introduced late last year, was a near copy of MP Waugh’s Private Member Bill C-218, which had been on the docket since February 2020. Assuming the Saskatoon MP’s legislation had been all-but forgotten, federal figureheads introduced a higher level bill to get the job done.

The first reading of Bill C-13 passed in November 25, 2020, and support was overwhelming. It marked the first time Canadians felt genuine hope that sports gambling would finally receive the legal expansion they believed it deserved. All eyes were on Parliament Hill, awaiting the new bill’s second reading slated for February 25, 2021. But before that day came, something unexpected occurred.

MP Waugh—who had decided to hold onto his measure beyond the introduction of Bill C-13, partly because its verbiage was slightly different, and also as a back-up plan, “just in case things did not proceed” as hoped—was afforded an opportunity to debate C-218 among his political colleagues. That spontaneous deliberation led to a second reading and vote on Wednesday, February 17.

Round 2: MP Waugh’s Sports Betting Bill Wins 303-15 Vote

The House of Commons displayed rare bipartisan approval for the sports wagering law. The measure was approved by an overwhelmingly popular vote of 303 to 15. And with that, Bill C-13 was no more.

The question many are pondering now is this: After all this time, what was it about Waugh’s debate that convinced so many of his colleagues to favor passage of the single-event sports betting law?

Most likely, it was the MP’s citing of statistics, which attribute lack of legalization to billions of dollars funneling offshore; money that could be so much better utilized to fund local communities and infrastructure.

“We believe, through the Canadian Gaming Association (CGA), that it’s a $14 billion dollar industry that Canadian provinces and Canadians are not getting any benefit from,” MP Waugh told news media. That number derives from CGA’s estimates that Canadians spend $4 billion a year at unregulated offshore betting sites, and $10 billion more with illegal domestic bookmakers.

“We don’t get any taxes through organized crime,” Waugh said. “We don’t get any taxes through organizations like Bodog and Bet365 – the offshore sites.” If Bill C-218 makes it into the law books, Waugh said it will grant provinces, “the much-needed money to give back to sports, culture, recreation and hopefully addictions programming, which I am certainly championing along with this bill.”

How Long Before Single-Event Sports Betting Becomes Legal in Canada?

According to MP Waugh himself, single-event sports wagers could be legal as early as Spring. He believes the review, third reading, and final vote in the Senate could occur by the end of May. But it will be a bit longer before Canadians see live and online sportsbooks welcome straight bets on their favorite sports teams.

Passage of Waugh’s sports betting bill would provide provinces with the legal route to script regulations for single-event betting, which they’ll have to do before they can start the process of accepting, reviewing and approving licenses for vendors and operators of sports betting services. Some company’s, like Canada’s locally owned theScore, along with DraftKings, FanDuel and others, are already preparing for the legal shift, which could realistically see this type of sports betting on the market before the year is out.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , ,

Jan 25

What happened to Nova Scotia gambling awareness funds?

What Happened to Nova Scotia Gambling Awareness Organization?

All across Canada, gambling is big business, especially for the provincial governments that profit from it. Gambling proceeds make up a remarkable portion of the revenue that funds education, health and community projects all across the country. It makes sense that, while gambling addiction is a concern, governments would want to keep that money rolling in. But some people were outraged to learn, months after the fact, that Nova Scotia has quietly done away with direct funding for its long-time gambling awareness program.

No More Funding for Nova Scotia Gambling Awareness

The program in question, Gambling Awareness Nova Scotia (GANS), is no in operation. The NS government didn’t mention it was doing away with the organization. In fact, no one seems to know exactly when GANS was stricken from the legislative record. What we do know is that it’s gone, and it has been for a few months, at least.

Bruce Dienes is the chair of a non-profit group, Gambling Risk Informed Nova Scotia, that strives to minimize the social harms of gambling within the community. Dienes said he learned of GANS dissolution in the fall of 2020, and that regulations for the program were officially altered in October.

When Dienes contacted the Department of Health and Wellness to inquire about it, he was told that “new information” had surfaced, indicating that the relationship between gambling and mental anguish, depression and anxiety, is far broader; the idea being that the funds once allocated for the prevention and treatment of gambling would better served funding the broader mental health spectrum.

Consolidating Nova Scotia’s Mental Health Budget

The government’s media relations advisor, Marla MacInnis, confirmed that GANS funding will be pooled into the province’s overall mental health and addictions budget, which comes to around $300 million per year.

“Problem gambling often occurs with other mental health and addictions issues, and due to the stigma, people often initially seek help for other issues,” MacInnis defends the government’s decision. “It’s best if people can access support that addresses these issues together.”

Dienes disagrees. “The idea that this is new information is ridiculous,” he said. “We’ve known this for decades.” He believes the choice to do consolidate funding was a much more calculated one, primarily aimed at resolving the “profound lack of funding for mental health in Nova Scotia.”

Research Favors Problem Gambling Services

Igor Yakovenko is a clinical psychologist and assistant professor at Dalhousie University. He says that, according to research, one of the common barriers between problem gamblers and treatment programs is a lack of information; especially information regarding where to turn for help in the first place. In his expert opinion, Yakovenko believes harm reduction and problem prevention programs are the most effective resources for curbing and curing addiction.

“We need services and public health resources that minimize problems from developing in the first place or, if you’re already gambling, they prevent you from escalating that gambling,” Yakovenko told CBC News.

This comes on the heals of the Atlantic Lottery Corporation’s (ALC) intent to expand its New Brunswick online casino to Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. The ALC’s online casino presents gamblers with the ability to wager amounts up to 40x higher (up to $100 per play) on online games compared to legal restrictions that limit a single bet on VLTs to no more than $2.50. All things considered, some would say there’s no better time for programs like Gambling Awareness Nova Scotia to remain funded and heavily promoted.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Mar 05

CGA lauds proposal of legal sports wagering bill in Canada.

CGA Lauds Proposal of Legal Sports Wagering Bill in Canada

Everyone paying attention to this topic knew this report was coming. Following a thorough inspection of the document in question, the Canadian Gaming Association (CGA) is throwing its full support behind the Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act; a bill introduced last week by Saskatoon-Grasswoods Conservative MP Kevin Waugh.

As its short title implies, the private member bill – officially labeled Bill C-218 – is intended to alter the current state of federal law to permit the most crucial form of sports gambling that is currently prohibited. It would allow bettors to place wagers on a single event or outcome. As things stand now, only parlay wagers are permitted, wherein bettors must correctly predict 3 or more results to win anything.

CGA Lauds Legal Sports Wagering Bill in Canada

For decades, Canadians have been privy to legal sports betting, but not in the way other major countries permit it; particularly the United States, which recently lifted a 26-year blanket-ban on sports betting. The Canadian Gaming Association has been pushing for broader sports wagering laws for years now, and wasted no time backing Waugh’s introduction of a PMB that would do just that.

Paul Burns, Chief Executive Officer of the CGA, comments:

Amending the Criminal Code to legalize single-event sports wagering will provide provinces with the necessary tools to deliver a safe and legal option to Canadians, as well as the power to address important issues such as consumer protection while enabling economic benefits to flow to licensed gaming operators, communities and provincial governments.”

This amendment will allow us to safeguard the $17.1-billion economic contribution that gaming makes to Canada as well as the 182,500 jobs that support not only individuals but communities. We look forward to working with all political parties to make single-event sports wagering a reality.”

Protecting Consumers in an Industry That Already Exists

As Burns pointed out, single-event sports betting already exists in Canada. With or without the legal approval of the Canadian government, bets are going to be placed. We can let the public go on wagering at offshore internet sports books, and/or with underground bookies of the criminal kind, or we can pass this law to legalize and regulate the activity, creating jobs, boosting the economy, and protecting consumers who are currently placing their wagers on gray and black markets.

If approved, Waugh’s bill – a carbon-copy of NDP MP Brian Masse’s 2016 Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act – would be the simplest of all to enact. All it would take is the addition of the word “or”, and a few taps of the backspace key.

Bill C-218 states its purpose as:

Subsection 207(4) of the Criminal Code is amended by adding “or” at the end of paragraph (a) and by repealing paragraph (b).

That particular portion of the Criminal Code refers to the “definition of a lottery scheme”. If so amended, its reading would change from…

Definition of lottery scheme
     (4) In this section, lottery scheme means a game or any proposal, scheme, plan, means, device, contrivance or operation described in any of paragraphs 206(1)(a) to (g), whether or not it involves betting, pool selling or a pool system of betting other than
          (a) three-card monte, punch board or coin table;
          (b) bookmaking, pool selling or the making or recording of bets, including bets made through the agency of a pool or pari-mutuel system, on any race or fight, or on a single sport event or athletic contest; or
          (c) for the purposes of paragraphs (1)(b) to (f), a game or proposal, scheme, plan, means, device, contrivance or operation described in any of paragraphs 206(1)(a) to (g) that is operated on or through a computer, video device, slot machine or a dice game.

…to read…

Definition of lottery scheme
     (4) In this section, lottery scheme means a game or any proposal, scheme, plan, means, device, contrivance or operation described in any of paragraphs 206(1)(a) to (g), whether or not it involves betting, pool selling or a pool system of betting other than
          (a) three-card monte, punch board or coin table; or
          (b) (repealed)
          (c) for the purposes of paragraphs (1)(b) to (f), a game or proposal, scheme, plan, means, device, contrivance or operation described in any of paragraphs 206(1)(a) to (g) that is operated on or through a computer, video device, slot machine or a dice game.

The end result would be what Canada’s sports betting enthusiasts have always craved – legal sports wagering on a single event or athletic contest.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , , ,

Feb 26

Are nay-sayers right to label new Canada sports gambling bill DOA?

Nay-Sayers Label New Canada Sports Gambling Bill DOA

On Tuesday, Ontario’s Windsor-West MP Brian Masse got his wish. For the third time, his CA betting bill, aimed at legalizing single-event sports bets, will be viewed and voted upon in the House of Commons; not because he introduced it himself, but because Conservative MP Kevin Waugh of Saskatoon-Grasswood did it for him. But are the countless sports-loving Canadians who are cheering on their efforts doing so in vain?

As they collectively chant, “Third time’s the charm!”, a larger, arguably more educated group (in the ways of politics, at least) are far from optimistic. In their view, the new Bill C-218, Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act, may have a prayer, but not a hope, destined to suffer yet another unceremonious death.

Is New Canada Sports Gambling Bill DOA?

The nay-sayers are certain Masse’s latest shot at a single-event betting law will miss the target, and they do make an awfully convincing argument. It’s not that the government doesn’t support the issue. It’s not that they are unaware of the many benefits it would bring to Canada. Their lack of interest is 100% politically fueled.

The Liberals are not going to support a rival party bill – certainly not while the Tories are right behind them, with hyperbolic jousting sticks and pitch forks, poking and prodding them out of office. You’ll remember, the Liberals lost majority control in the October elections. The Tories are beyond confident that majority rule awaits them, and all it could take is a non-confidence motion such as this to put them their.

Forget that single-event sports betting is what the people want; forget that our neighbor states to the south are legalizing sports gambling as I write this; forget that it would generate taxes, create jobs, and staunch the outflow of $10-$40 billion to criminal bookies and offshore internet sportsbooks. This is about nothing more than government officials grasping at the remnants of political power.

Two Bills Down, One to Go

Masse knows all too well that a rival’s private member bill stands against ridiculous odds. He’s experienced it twice before. He watched former NDP MP Joe Comartin’s 2012 sports betting bill go up in flames in the Senate, despite starting out with a solid, unanimous passing in the House. In 2016, his own attempt – born of the ashes of Comartin’s bill – was looked upon as a mange-ridden hound scampering into the wrong camp.

After eight years of repeated failures, the Windsor-West representative realized his only hope was bipartisan support. That’s exactly what MP Waugh brought to the table when he won an early spot in the PMB lottery, giving him the option to submit a bill from a rival camp that the House must consider.

The fact that Waugh accepted a direct transfer of Masse’s Bill C-218, introducing it to the House of Commons Tuesday morning, gives it the bipartisan favor of NDP and Conservative camps; “a bipartisan effort from the start,” as Masse so confidently put it.

But alas, the boasting of a proud parent is undoubtedly biased. Masse has to know just how long this shot is. If the Liberals lose a confidence motion, every last measure on their docket will suffer a quick and regretful demise. In the eyes of the Canadian public, Liberals are already teetering on the edge of a hot water boiling pot. Masse’s campaign to push a new Canada sports gambling bill might be better served by rubbing elbows in the camps of the future’s more productive political parties.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , ,

Feb 18

The UKGC has issued the temporary license suspension of Matchbook, a long-time online sports exchange and casino operator that vows to achieve compliance and a swift return.

UKGC Suspends License of Matchbook Online Sports Exchange & Casino

It’s no secret that the UK Gambling Commission has no patience for remote operators who fail to uphold its guidelines. It is universally recognized as the strictest online gambling authority on the planet. That’s bad news for operators with any misconceived notions of getting away with a lax regime; at the same time, great news for members of any UKGC-licensed operation, knowing they are well protected against everything from social harms to criminal activity.

The Commission has proved its intolerance for licensee failures time and time again. UKGC officials are constantly doling out fines to operators who’ve been found guilty of non-compliance. The severity of those fines continue to rise, not just with time, but with loss of patience for repetitive transgressions. However – and I’ve pointed this out on several previous occasions – it’s extremely rare, practically unheard of, in fact, for the Commission to actually suspend an operator’s license.

That point of interest makes this latest news all the more brow-raising. As of this morning, Tuesday, February 18, 2020, the UKGC has officially suspended the license of Triplebet Limited, d.b.a. Matchbook.com.

Online Sports Exchange & Casino License Suspended

Matchbook Sports Betting License Temporarily Suspended

A brief press release issued this morning by the UK Gambling Commission confirms that Matchbook has, indeed, lost its license; at least, temporarily. The suspension of Triplebet LTD’s license prohibits the Matchbook from facilitating any remote gambling activities, effective immediately.

According to the UKGC’s official announcement:

The Gambling Commission has undertaken a Licence review under s116 of the Gambling Act 2005 (“the Act”) into Triplebet Limited t/a Matchbook (operating licence no 039504-R-319407-011).

Pursuant to section 118(2) of the Act, the Commission has determined to suspend the above operating licence insofar as it pertains to the operator’s ability to offer remote facilities for pool betting, betting intermediary and to operate a remote casino.”

The Matchbook website is still up and running, as the operator has been instructed to continue settling any open wagers placed prior to the license suspension, and honoring withdrawal requests of customer accounts.

What the UKGC notably failed to mention was any innuendo into the reasoning behind their sudden course of action. There is no hint of why Matchbook is under investigation. The Commission simply directs any customer questions concerning the issue to Matchbook’s support team (email support@matchbook.com or call 0203 642 6867).

Matchbook Vows Swift Resolution and Return

Just as the UKGC was publishing its news of the license suspension and investigatory review of the operator, Matchbook was scurrying to get an email off to its customers warning them of the site’s impending fate, and reassuring them that the operator will be back up and running as swiftly as possible.

The email that went out this morning to all UK customer’s reads:

Today the United Kingdom Gambling Commission has taken the decision to temporarily suspend the operating licence of Triplebet Limited (t/a Matchbook).

As a result, from 23.59 on 17 February 2020 we will be briefly closed for all betting and casino activity in the United Kingdom. During this time we will continue to settle all open positions and you will have access to your account to withdraw your funds.

Matchbook has been in regular contact with the Gambling Commission and has agreed a path forward where it will deliver on a number of conditions. We will be back soon and we are committed to providing a betting exchange which adheres to very high standards.”

When all is said and done, I’m hopeful the UKGC will publish its findings, along with any sanctions against the company, and the reasons behind them. Until then, it’s worth noting that Matchbook has been in good standing with its customers and licensing authorities for many years. The online sports exchange and casino has been in operation since 2004, and by all accounts, has every intention of being back in business as quickly as UKGC investigators will allow.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Feb 10

A Question for the Modern Ages: Is Gambling Legal in Canada?

Question for the Modern Ages – Is Gambling Legal in Canada?

A simple question such as this deserves an equally simple answer. In today’s modern age, there are many different types of gambling. It would be easy to convolute the problem with legal jargon and complicated interpretations of the law, but I promise you, I won’t do that.

As an avid enthusiast of online gambling, I’ve spent more than enough time researching the Canadian Criminal Code to understand its meaning. Fortunately for you, as a career journalist in the field, I’d like to think I can translate it in a manner that is as easy as possible to understand.

Q&A: Is Gambling Legal in Canada?

The short answer is, Yes!, gambling is legal here in Canada. However, that is a vague question. There are many different types of gambling. I have no idea whether you’re referring to casino gambling, poker games, bingo, sports betting, horse racing, lotteries, raffles, etc.

Most of these are legal in some capacity, with restrictions. In the following sections, we’ll discuss each type of gambling, and just how legal it is.

Note that all of these laws extend into the online gambling realm, at least to some extent. To be thorough, I’ll give you a brief summary of online gambling laws to start.

Legality of Online Gambling in Canada

Is Online Gambling Legal in Canada

Online gambling is legal in Canada. Internet gambling sites come in two varieties – Provincialand International. Either way, both are legal.

Provincial online casinos are only available in B.C., Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec, and only accept player’s who reside within their respective borders. International online casinos are located offshore, regulated by their own jurisdictions.

So long as an offshore operator does not have a physical presence in Canada (offices or servers on Canadian soil), they are not illegal.

Casino Gambling Laws

Casino games are legal in Canada, so long as they are conducted in a licensed gaming facility, or with a provincial charity-gaming permit. There are more than 100 commercial casinos in the country, from Quebec’s Casino de Montreal, to British Columbia’s Hard Rock Vancouver. We also have tribal casinos, like the Bear Claw Casino in Carlyle, Saskatchewan.

Charities are able to host “casino night” events, where table games like roulette and blackjack can be legally held, so long as the right permits are obtained from their provincial government.

As for online casino gambling, there are hundreds of legal, reputably licensed operators in Europe that accept Canadian players.

Poker Gambling

Poker-based card games are also legal in Canada. A commercial casino, poker room or charity may host poker games, and collect a “rake” (profit) for doing so, as long as they have the correct license or permit. Home poker games are legal, as well, but no rake (profit) can be taken by the host / home owner.

Online poker is also legal, either through provincially or internationally regulated websites.

Bingo Halls / Charity Bingo

Bingo games are among the most popular forms of game-based fund raising in the country. Again, with proper permits, bingo games are perfectly legal. Some Canadian casinos, especially the tribal variety, are famous for hosting organized bingo games.

Online bingo – same as casino and poker – can be done at provincial or international gambling sites.

Sports Betting in Canada

Canadian sports betting laws in 2020 are a topic of great import. As the law stands now, only provincially-run, parlay-style betting is permitted. It is conducted much like a provincial lottery. In fact, some provinces actually call it the Sports Lottery; others call it Pro-Line. In parlay wagering, bettors must select a number of correct picks from various sporting events, and they must all be correct to win anything. The payout is high, but the odds are higher.

It is for this reason that so many Canadian sports bettors are turning to offshore, online sportsbook operators – remember, these are not illegal in Canada – to place single-event bets. There’s a strong push in the federal government to pass a single-event sports betting law, but until that happens – of ever it does – most sports wagering dollars are flowing offshore.

Horse Race Betting

Horse racing is the oldest form of organized, legal betting in Canada. There are tracks all over the map, from B.C. to Nova Scotia. You can place bets at these tracks, at offsite betting locations across the country, or via online racebooks.

Lotteries & Raffles

The second oldest form of legal gambling are the national and provincial lottery games. The first drawings were held in 1973 to help raise money to pay for the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal. It was a huge success, raising $230 million from 1973-76. Lotteries have been helping to fund government budgets ever since.

Online lotteries are legal in Canada, too. Most of our provinces sell online lottery tickets to drawings, as well as the scratch off variety. Tickets for international lotteries can be purchased from offshore websites.

Raffles are most often held as charitable events; legal with appropriate permits.

Conclusion & Brief Word on Internet Gambling

By now, you should have more than enough information to answer the question; Is gambling legal in Canada? However, before I wrap this up, I have to issue a brief warning about gambling over the internet.

If you do not live in a province where online gambling is locally regulated – or if you choose to gamble at internationally regulated websites – please do so with caution. Not all offshore operators are reputable. Stick to websites that are licensed in major European iGaming jurisdictions, like Isle of Man, Malta or The UK. They are held to the strictest standards, and are considered the absolute safest, most secure operators in the world.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Feb 04

Understanding the commitment behind the most trusted online casino licenses and why it should matter to you.

The Most Trusted Online Casino Licenses and Why it Matters

The online gambling industry has been around far longer than any jurisdiction has been regulating it. In the early days, operators took one of two paths. They would either open an entirely upright business and rely solely on a stellar reputation to bring in customers, or they would open a website, see if it went well, and disappear with the cash if it didn’t.

There were, of course, a few that launched with every intention of taking the money and running, but for the most part, iGaming operators were trying to get off the ground successfully. And why not? There was – and still is – big money in iGaming. Unfortunately, without any proper regulation, they had no authority to answer to; therefore no good reason to ‘do the right thing’ if and when a business fell apart.

The good news is that regulation did come. Several jurisdictions began passing regulations around the turn of the century. They saw a severe need, and responded with legislation to either prohibit iGaming, or regulate the industry and protect players – and make barrels of cash in the process.

It is for this reason that we see so many small countries regulating online casinos; places like Alderney, Antigua and Barbuda, Costa Rica, Curacao, and Gibraltar, just to name a few. These are mostly island nations with limited financial resources, so when they realized they could turn a necessary regulatory service into a cash crop, they jumped on it. Some did so with the people in mind. Others did it just for the money, and it shows.

Trusted Online Casino Licenses

A responsible authority puts the online casino clients ahead of all else. The operators they supply licenses to are given a strict regiment of laws to abide by. These laws protect the players, the operators, and the jurisdiction – a trinity of defense for all involved. If an operator does not comply with these laws, the penalty hammer drops swiftly. They could suffer anything from a massive fine, to license suspension or, in the most serious cases, revocation of said license.

Online casinos that hold such a license can be trusted. These are the operators that entered the market with good intentions, and were so determined to succeed in those intentions that they worked hard (and paid extra) to acquire a respectable license.

Best of all, any operator that is licensed by a reputable authority is required to segregate player funds. This means that every deposit is put in a separate bank account from the operator’s business funds. Therefore, if the business falls apart, all players will get their money back.

Licensing jurisdictions that fall into this category include (but are not limited to):

  • Alderney
  • Gibraltar
  • Isle of Man
  • Malta
  • The United Kingdom

If you’re moderately educated in geography, you’ll realize these are all located in Europe. There’s a reason for that. The European Union holds its member states to supremely high standards of governance. In fact, any European nation that regulates iGaming is one that can be trusted. The UK is actually the strictest of them all, setting a high bar for all others to follow.

Unsafe Online Gambling Licenses

On the opposite end of that spectrum, there are licensing jurisdictions that don’t care what their licensees do. They can accept any players, whether they reside in a country that prohibits iGaming or not. They can supply uncertified and ultimately unfair software. They can accept deposits, then refuse to pay withdrawals on whatever false grounds they make up. Many of them are only bound to abide by two laws – pay your fees to maintain the license, and do not accept players from the country in which you are licensed.

Wait, what? Yes, you read that right. An irresponsible licensing authority will not allow its operators to accept players from within their own border. This should present a wildly-waving red flag for any player. If their own citizens cannot access the website, there has to be a reason; in this case, because the site’s themselves cannot be trusted, as they aren’t bound to uphold any decent business practice laws.

Some of the jurisdictions on this list are worse than others. Costa Rica is perhaps the worst, requiring nothing but a license payment and refusal to accept Costa Rican players (as detailed above). Curacao and Kahnawake aren’t as bad, but their governments do not prevent licensees to operate in illegal markets. That might be okay with the players who live in those illegal markets, knowing the operator could be shut down at any moment, but if you live in a legal jurisdiction like Canada, depositing at such a website is just asking for trouble.

Irresponsible licensing authorities that fall into this category include (but are not limited to):

  • Belize
  • Costa Rica
  • Curacao
  • Kahnawake
  • Panama

An operator that is licensed in one of the above jurisdictions may be a perfectly trusted online casino, but the fact is, they don’t have to be. The law does not require them to do the right thing. Now that you know the difference between licensing jurisdictions, you can do the right thing too, avoiding any necessary risk.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , ,