How Do Gambling Laws Affect Bitcoin Players?

Feb 29, 2016
Online Gambling Restrictions

Online Gambling Restrictions

Bitcoin gamblers do not often have to trouble themselves about checking the terms and conditions of most gambling sites they frequent. This is mostly because with the spread of Bitcoin, people have been setting up gaming sites all over the Internet at a frenetic pace. The common denominator among these sites is that they operate solely via Bitcoin and do not often observe major online gambling regulations.

For larger casinos and betting institutions, though, ignoring rules and regulations is not possible. With the increasing popularity of Bitcoin, these gaming websites have adopted the cryptocurrency but not the carefree approach to following the law that most of them have. This means that Bitcoin gamblers playing in them may encounter online gambling restrictions for the first time.

Licenses and regulations

Regulations and licenses go hand in hand with each other. This is because of the difficulty of keeping online gambling under control. Unless a country employs draconian measures, it is very hard to be strict about gambling when the gamblers are located comfortably in their own home.

Online gambling regulations are a way for a country to make sure that the gambling operators follow a set of rules that protect gamblers and the casinos from fraud. The regulations are also there to stop crimes like money laundering that are usually associated with casinos.

Gaming Authorities

The problem with regulating online gambling is that the Internet covers the entire world, crossing the jurisdictions of various countries. Most of these countries have different laws about gambling. For instance, online gambling is illegal in the US, which stops anyone from playing online except for certain states or setting up an online casino on its soil without the necessary permits. Bitcoin gambling in Las Vegas, for example, still requires operators to acquire licenses. This was the case with Bryan Micon, the owner of the now-defunct Seals With Clubs.

This is different from 70 countries all over the world, where it is possible to legally gamble and even to set up shop.

This is where licenses come in. To be able to operate in these areas, an online casino needs to have a license from the local gaming authority. These usually require a casino to meet local regulations, and there are already certain Bitcoin casinos accepting US players.

An example would be the UK. A casino, both online and offline, needs to ensure that its players are at least 18 years old and they are not associated with illegal acts. Additionally, a casino needs to pay regulatory and licensing fees on a regular basis.

Other gambling jurisdictions have different regulations. These can include not allowing locals to play or to have a physical corporation set up in the country’s territory.

Restricted Countries

Restrictions to play

The main way that regulations can affect players is how they can restrict a person from playing. For instance, many casinos do not want to go against US gambling laws, even if they are not located in US territory. This is why a lot of online casinos do not accept players or wagers from the US and this is the same for the UK, except for the best Bitcoin casinos in UK.

The regulations can also force players to reveal information about themselves. This is to ensure that the people playing are not criminals or identity thieves and that the operators can facilitate quick deposits and withdrawals with banks.

Being aware of such online gambling laws can make a Bitcoin gambler’s life easier. They can also help decide on which Bitcoin casinos to patronize.