In the world of casinos, everything is possible, and it’s here where winners bag big prizes, and some count their losses. It’s wilderness out there with many stakeholders from the casino websites, the players, the dealers, and the government or regulatory authority.
In India, online casinos must have specific credentials to operate legally in the Indian market. Therefore, we recommend for players to only place bets in authorized or licensed casinos.
A gaming license ensures a casino operates within the confinements of the law. Before a casino is allowed to operate in India, there are several requirements that it must present to the authorizing authority.
A casino must pass the test, and in this review, we shall slice up everything you need to know about a casino license. We’ll look at the various options which are universal for most casinos around the globe.
Steps Before A Casino Obtain A License
A functional Website
The casino must have a functioning website before they can apply for a gaming license. The website acts as the main platform, where players get to interact with the casino. Most online casinos invest in the best designs and incorporate impressive graphics, videos, and lighting to attract players and provide the best gaming experience.
Also, players can communicate and ask a question through forms, chats, or emails. All these are the essentials of an online casino website, and the authorities will assess the suitability of the site to offer gaming options to its clientele.
Before a casino is licensed, there must be an existing platform through which players can make deposits and withdrawals. The casino must also incorporate some of the popular payment platforms through which users can deposit their bankrolls and withdraw their winnings.
In India, you’ll find that the most popular payment solutions include; visa or MasterCard for both debit/credit cards, e-wallets such as Skrill, Neteller or PayPal, Direct bank deposits, and AstroPay cards. Only genuine payment methods are allowed, and the casino will be denied a license if they have unknown or questionable options.
Usually, an online casino doesn’t have ownership of online games or slots. All the games that you see on a website are from third parties. Before a casino applies for a license, they must have a wide range of games from reputable software developers. Some renowned game providers include Micro-gaming, NextGen, Evolution Gaming, Wizard Gaming, Rival, and more.
Sound financial ability
A casino must have a solid financial backing to be allowed to operate or have a license. Remember that a casino will be taking deposits, making payments, offering bonuses, free spins, etc. Also, other costs are associated with setting up a casino such as Webhosting and payments to staff, such as human dealers. When you consider all this, it would be impossible to get a license when there’s a negative bank balance. The casino must present proof of a sound financial statement like positive bank balances.
Before a casino is granted a license, there is an assessment of its reputation if at all it has been operating in other countries. Some casinos such as BetWay, 22Bet are international and popular all around the world with positive reviews from players and stakeholders.
When seeking licenses, the past character, such as payment of tax in different countries, will be considered.
Other things to consider will include the rate of payout and payment speed after a player wins. However, a verification process requires players to send vital documents to the casino for certification. The licensing authority will look into what processes the casino has put in place to ensure the members’ documents are verified and stored safely.
Member privacy is key, and the laws will not allow situations where this is compromised. The database of the casinos should be encrypted to prevent hackers from accessing the documents.
Taxation Issues in India
All casinos in India must submit a withholding tax of 30% for each win. It means that if you win 10,000 Rupees, you’ll only receive 7,000 after paying withholding tax. Other than that, the taxation laws are elaborate and apply to all businesses in India, and online casinos are not an exception.
Players normally worry about paying the withholding tax. You can play at international casino websites; however, there’s no guarantee that your earnings are not subject to taxes from those casinos operating.
Luckily as a player, you don’t have to present any documentation to the authorities since the casino deducts the money before you withdraw.
Even after paying the withholding tax for players in some countries, a casino will still pay taxes for income earned within a specified period.
Betting In A Casino With No License
Many online casinos operate in India. Whereas most of them are licensed, there are a few that operate without licenses. It’s worth noting that these casinos are breaking the law and operate illegally.
We recommend Indian players to stake money in a fully licensed casino. In the event that you lose your money in an illegal casino, you’ll not have any legal recourse. There’s also the risk of exposing your private information in the hands of crooks, which can lead to financial loss or identity theft.
Categories Of Casinos
There are two main categories of casino licensing. Some are licensed locally, while another category is internationally regulated, depending on their operation jurisdiction. Some countries, especially those under the European Union, prefer regulating the casino industry.
Any operator willing to set base there must apply for a license alongside any other they may have. However, there is another category that allows casinos to operate with an international license such as India.
Curacao is an international license from the Caribbean Island of Curacao and is popular amongst online casinos since they’re tax-exempt. It, therefore, means a casino can optimize its profits without worrying about paying taxes.
In addition, the registration process is incredibly faster and can take up to two months. However, the casino will need to use servers within the territory of Curacao. In this tiny Island, online gambling is a huge success due to a favorable taxation system.
Kahnawake is another international license popular among online casinos due to the lenient terms and conditions. It’s from Canada, and generally, this country is not very strict when it comes to online gambling.
The licensing commission in Canada has been around since 1996. However, the costs appear to be high, especially for a new casino, since yearly license renewal can cost up to $ 65,000. Quite huge! However, considering casinos are money minting establishments, the costs are easily recouped.
Malta is an international casino license that is further divided into two categories. There are the B2B license and the B2B category. Both types are valid for five years, and it’s a prestigious one and enables operators to operate in the UK.
However, there are many requirements that a casino must adhere to, which often are stringent. For instance, an operator must file the financial records for taxation purposes and maintain players’ data privacy.
Another thing to note about Malta is that it operates in many countries that allow international licenses such as India. Therefore, you’re likely to find this license in your favorite online casino.
For a casino to get this license there is a process that takes up to four weeks. The Malta Gaming Authority conducts this process, and a casino will be given a temporary license that lasts six months. After that, depending on the verification process’s outcome, the casino will be granted a five-year license.
The casinos are not exempted from tax obligations, as this depends on the license category. For instance, B2C categories pay 1.25% of revenue below 3 million pounds.
Gibraltar is an international license associated with Gibraltar banks. This means that for a casino to get the license, it must prove it has a sound financial status. It must produce a financial statement of how it plans to pay the winnings, assess players’ credit, amongst other things. The casino must process its transactions via the bank.
Isle of Man
The Isle of Man is a popular gaming license; however, it’s very strict and has a very stringent system of monitoring a casino’s operators. The licensing commission works under rigorous principles, including casinos, ensuring they operate in a crime-free environment. Also, the casinos must practice fairness for all players and protect the vulnerable such as children.
An operator will be charged an application fee, and the process takes up to 12 weeks. However, it can be suspended if the operator is found guilty of malpractice or failure to settle fees such as annual charges. The initial application is $5000; however, annual fees are depending on the category tax. There’s no corporate tax payable, but the rate of VAT is 20%.
Other than the unregulated licensing, the other category of online casino licensing is the regulated option. In this method, operators can apply for licenses from different countries and comply with various laws and rules.
In the UK, the United Kingdom Gambling Commission grants licenses to casinos. There are rules and regulations under which every operator must adhere to.
The application process takes approximately sixteen weeks after a casino provides all the required documentation. The license is renewable every three years, and the application process is strictly online.
The Danish Gambling Authority is solely responsible for granting gambling licenses to online casinos in Denmark as well as sports betting.
Sweden’s gambling industry is very developed and vibrant. Due to the runaway success, many countries would like to emulate the legislation and licensing.
Swedish gambling authority has the sole responsibility of granting gambling licenses for operators that would like to set base in Sweden. There are several requirements that each operator must meet before being allowed to conduct business.
The Agency of Customs and monopoly is the regulatory authority of licenses to casinos in Italy. All operators must meet specific requirements when seeking a gaming license.
An online casino must provide the following documents during its application of licenses.
- Identity documents such as a certificate of incorporation for companies
- Policy records and documents
- Financial statements for assessment
- Directors identification documents
How much are the licensing fees?
The amount a casino pays during registration will depend on the licensing body or country. Most often, the fees will be paid when submitting the registration documents. Also, most licenses are renewable every year or after a few years, depending on the licensing body requirements.
Whether land-based or online, a casino must have a license so that players and stakeholders can consider it as trustworthy and legal. However, the process differs depending on the jurisdiction and the country’s laws where it plans to operate. There are many requirements which the operator must meet before they’re allowed to operate. A license gives the casino a reputable status. As a player, it’s crucial to stake your money with a licensed casino.