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Cheers and Cheers Abound for New UK Online Gambling Law

Published on May 19, 2014 by Bob Hartman

The everyday consumer, once again, will not be harmed or helped by a law implemented by a country that is meant to add further rules and regulations to the most confusing online gambling and sports betting industry.

The new law this time comes from the UK and is meant to compel gaming operators in any jurisdiction where they have been licensed (outside the UK), to obtain a license from the UK which will allow them to offer betting options to UK gamblers.

The new law, which is likely to be finalized on July 1, and is likely to take full effect on September 1, will cost operators up to $25,000 in the first year and more than $200,000 annually if they meet certain dollar minimums. However, the more contentious aspect of the law is the 15% tax on UK bettors’ income.

“The high cost of these requirements is likely to create another scenario that will help unregulated and unlicensed operators gain a greater foothold in the industry,” said CGW analyst Ryan Murphy.

Regulations supported in the new law are regulations that compel newly licensed offshore operators to detect and report scrupulous behavior to protect against money laundering, and to help sports leagues detect cheating scandals. Also, some of the money will be used for further research into gambling problems and helping those in need of support.

It is also possible that legal action will be taken by a reputable operator outside the UK. According to legal experts from Outl-Law.com, the actions taken by these players could eventually slow down the implementation of the law, maintaining the status quo for the time being.

By complicating licensing and creating so many costly hurdles for legitimate operators outside the UK, those operators can choose not to get a license and refuse bets to UK players. This will open the door for black market operators who will be happy to take bets from any player in the world without following licensing and regulatory procedures.

“In a market that is already operating optimally, it is difficult to understand the purpose of this new UK law,” Murphy told us. “This could create another wild-west situation that will only hurt consumers once again.”

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