Online Casino License
Online casino licenses allow betting sites to operate in certain jurisdictions and ensure fair play, security, payouts, and more.
Table of Contents
- Bitcoin Casino Licenses
- What Is a Bitcoin Casino License?
- What Bitcoin Casino Licenses Exist Today?
- Why Are Bitcoin Casinos Licensed Overseas?
- How Do Online Casinos Choose an Online Gambling License?
- Bitcoin Casinos Banking and Licenses
- Pure Crypto Casinos vs Hybrid Crypto Casinos
- What are the Best Bitcoin Casino Licenses?
Bitcoin Casino Licenses
Being familiar with Bitcoin gambling licensing is a crucial step before making any sort of casino deposit. Here you’ll find everything there is about online gaming regulation and cryptocurrency gambling licensing, so the next time you visit Bitcoin casino sites you will know where you stand.
Every provably fair crypto casino needs a gaming license, and Bitcoin gaming is no different. This is not only the question of the financial legality and fairness of Bitcoin games found in an online casino but a valuable tool for crypto gambling as such.
For starters, casino sites need a license in order to open bank accounts, handle crypto exchanges, host live casino games, and slots, and conduct all aspects of Bitcoin gambling. A licensed casino with strong regulation is your best assurance that everything will be done according to the gambling rules and the law itself.
At all times keep in mind that the legality of a Bitcoin casino is determined by the laws of the country you are playing from, not the country you are actually from.
What Is a Bitcoin Casino License?
By definition, a gaming license allows a betting site, or a casino operator, to legally conduct a gambling business in a particular country. In most cases, acquiring a gambling license is a long, tedious, and costly process with lots of caveats. And yet, there are a couple of places, such as the state of Curacao, where obtaining a gaming license is relatively cheap and easy.
Some countries, like the UK, force casino operators to apply for more than one casino license, depending on their business model. For example, you have to acquire two separate licenses for sports betting and virtual sports respectively, although it seems that the two betting games should have the same rules and regulations.
What Bitcoin Casino Licenses Exist Today?
There are numerous online casino licenses, but here we’ll list some of the most commonly used. Keep in mind that these are not the only licenses available to operators, but they dominate the online gaming segment right now, and your favorite Bitcoin casino probably has at least one license listed below.
Alderney Gambling Control Commission is a 20+years old regulation body with solid respect in the gaming community. After a five to ten thousand pounds deposit, the license for category 1 gambling license costs 17,500 pounds, with renewal going as far as 35,000 pounds Sterling. Of course, these figures are influenced by gross gaming income, previous licensing, etc.
Gibraltar Regulatory Authority is something of a golden standard in the world of Bitcoin gambling, and it’s not open to rookies. It looks promising to Bitcoin gambling operators due to low taxes. It’s only 1% of a casino revenue limited to 425,000 pounds.
However, this license is one of the hardest to obtain. All transactions must flow through banks located in Gibraltar, and owners have to present a business plan and confirm their financial stability. The license cost around 100,00 pounds Sterling, but will only greenlight casinos with impeccable records.
Curacao Gaming Control Board comes from a small Caribbean island that offers cheap and fast licenses divided into sub-licenses and master licenses. New casinos apply for sub-licenses at one of the master license holders, and they are valid as long as the master license is.
Curacao has no corporate income tax and a net gain tax of only 2%. On average, it costs around $5,000 per year, with a couple of grand or so paid for the initial application fee. The biggest flaw of the Curacao license is that players from the USA, the Netherlands, France, and some other major countries – including Curacao itself, cannot play in those casinos.
Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission comes from the island that is technically not part of the United Kingdom, but rather a British Crown Dependency. They are famous for being business-friendly, with a simple and efficient application process and efficient taxes.
The Isle of Man license is a well-known, reputable legal document that is both financially attractive with a zero-tax policy, and it offers a great advantage if you want to step into the UK gambling market.
Kahnawake Gaming Commission issues a license that is quite desirable thanks to zero-percent taxes and widely respected authority in the gambling community.
This First Nation’s reserve in Canadian Quebec offers six different licenses related to online gaming, from casino employment to different casino segments such as live casinos, and software authorization. The license is valid for five years and yes – it takes a lot of paperwork and tedious legal operations to get it.
Malta Gaming Authority offers a reputable gaming license and this country has been the iGaming capital of the European Union. Malta has four classes of licenses and it provides a gateway to the European market, but getting this gambling licence is a long process made out of five stages. Having said that, Bitcoin casinos gladly opt for this gaming license because players place high trust in it.
UK Gambling Commission is probably the toughest to get, but it offers plenty of benefits. It has one of the longest approval periods with super-strict rules and regulations, and they have five types of licenses for remote betting, each for a different gaming group.
For example, virtual sports and sports betting require the acquisition of two separate licenses. So, why would a betting site go through all that trouble? The answer – the UK is a huge global contributor to the international gaming industry and this license is a doorway to a vast and lucrative market. Also, it is one of the most trusted licenses in Bitcoin gambling.
Dutch Gaming Authority (KSA) opened its regulated online market in 2021. It is known for rigidity and strict regulations and procedures in accordance with the highest standards.
There are four types of applications, from sports betting to playing against the casino, and the application alone has a fee of €48,000. This type of license is fairly new and so far we can tell it is quite hard to get, and relatively expensive, but it offers superior regulation and tight control.
Sweden’s Spelinspektionen focuses on gambling addiction prevention and player protection, due to the fact that up until recently the state had a monopoly on gambling.
The Swedish market is slowly opening up and it offers a potentially lucrative pool of players, just keep in mind that Spelinspektionen is quite a restrictive and reactionary body, as shown during Pandemics, when they imposed temporary restrictive measures on casino bonuses and deposits.
Costa Rica is the last on our list because, contrary to the popular belief, there is no such thing as a gambling license issued by Costa Rica.
There are no regulations and laws for online gambling in Costa Rica, and operators have to incorporate a gaming company from Costa Rica and state that the goal of the firm is to provide gambling games outside of the country. As for the country itself, online gambling is still illegal which is why casinos do not offer their services to the people of Costa Rica.
Why Are Bitcoin Casinos Licensed Overseas?
You probably know the answer in your heart already – it’s the only way to make a lot of money by avoiding prohibition, unfavorable legislatures, and hefty taxes.
A lot of people would like to play casino games but online gaming is illegal in their country, which is why they are playing them in a Bitcoin casino that is not based in their own country, but somewhere else, usually in a tax haven of some sort. That way, online gaming operators are not subject to anti-gambling laws, but the laws of the jurisdiction they are licensed in.
In some cases, offshore casinos will have better games, bonuses, and terms and conditions than casinos right next to you, due to lower taxes and a whole plethora of restrictive laws imposed by your country.
How Do Online Casinos Choose an Online Gambling License?
When it comes to decisions like this, there are a lot of factors to consider. Each and every casino license has its own pros and cons, and it’s up to Bitcoin casino operators to sort their priorities.
One thing is constant, though. If you want to engage in cryptocurrency gambling you have to obtain an offshore gaming license because in almost all cases. It is virtually impossible to run a profitable online gambling business under the jurisdiction of your own country, and additionally, there is no legislative framework deciding on the regulations and rules related to cryptos and Bitcoin.
The key factors upon which operators make their decisions are:
- The cost of a license.
- The time it takes to get it.
- Reputation in the gaming community.
- Gaming market.
- Is it a one-for-all license?
- Are several licenses needed for individual casino games?
Costs of Online Casino Licenses
The cost of acquiring an online gambling license can vary dramatically, depending on the license you are trying to obtain. It is very hard to create an all-inclusive pricing list of all licenses because the cost of a gaming license is not paid in a single transaction at one particular moment.
First, there are application fees, then a license price for a single year, or five years – it varies, followed by administrative expenses, testing fees, and renewal fees for casinos with an expiring license. But in general, if you want to open an online casino and want to get a gambling license it will cost you roughly between $30,000 to $100,000+ just to start.
Bitcoin Casinos Banking and Licenses
Although most governments do not regard Bitcoin as a real currency, fully licensed and regulated casinos are fully capable of providing us with safe and reliable crypto gambling. The most popular decentralized currencies (such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Dogecoin, and the rest) quickly found their spot next to the fiat currency you have in your pocket right now.
You do not need a bank institution and cryptos are known to process payments in a blink of an eye. However, you need to find casinos that accept Bitcoin transactions, as well as other cryptocurrencies and related payment methods. One such payment method is Bitcoin cash, but you can rely on Tether, Tron, and many others.
In regard to the laws and regulations concerning cryptos, even if the country does not recognize Bitcoin as a real currency it rarely legally pursues a person who uses cryptos for gambling. Instead, in extreme cases, they go after a casino or an operator, but according to them, even if gambling with cryptos is illegal in some countries, casinos claim that they are bound by the laws of the license-issuing country, not the one where actual players reside and gamble with cryptos.
Pure Crypto Casinos vs Hybrid Crypto Casinos
There are two types of casinos in the world of crypto gambling – pure bitcoin casinos, and hybrid ones. A pure Bitcoin casino does not accept fiat money or real currency, and it relies on electronic payment systems designed for cryptos alone. A hybrid Bitcoin casino does accept fiat currencies, but it converts them into cryptocurrencies for you to play with.
Likewise, a hybrid crypto casino converts your cryptos into fiat cash (US dollars, Euros…), and later on, you can withdraw that money via your regular bank account, with no need for e-wallets and Bitcoin wallets. If this is your choice, be aware that paying fees to payment service providers is a real possibility and some casinos do impose such expenses on players.
What are the Best Bitcoin Casino Licenses?
Finding the best crypto casinos and betting sites according to their license is a bit of a tricky endeavor but it’s not impossible. This is because people tend to choose an online casino based on their gaming preferences, game providers, bonus money, wagering requirements, wagering contribution, banking options, and currency accepted – and not the license per se.
So, if you want to play only provably fair games in a good cryptocurrency casino, possibly with a hefty BTC bonus, you could try casinos holding a Malta Gaming Authority license. It is harder to get than a Curacao license, and it supports Bitcoin casinos. Now, this is not to say that casinos holding a Curacao license are 100% a scam. It just means that a Malta-issued license offers tighter regulation and security, AND some cool Bitcoin casinos start to emerge under the Maltese umbrella.
Likewise, good casinos with Curacao or Alderney licenses still exist and some of them offer truly favorable games and welcome bonuses. We can not tell you how to arrange your own casino profile and what risk threshold you are comfortable gambling with, and we hope this page explained to you how gambling licenses work and what to look for when entering a licensed online casino.
How can I tell if a crypto casino is licensed?
The vast majority of online Bitcoin casinos will present their credentials in the footer. Go to the bottom of an online Bitcoin casino and site and there you will find a name, or a logo, indicating which gaming license a Bitcoin casino owns.
How much does a gambling license cost?
Different jurisdictions charge differently, and there is a matter of tax rate to take into consideration. In Malta, a crypto gambling license will set you back €5,000 for the application fee, and the annual license fee is €25,000.
If an online casino features online slot games, there is an additional progressive scale used for taxation and it’s based on profits made by Bitcoin casino sites.
However, if you want to obtain a gaming license in Sweden, that’s gonna cost you between €230,000 and half a million euros.
What is an offshore Bitcoin casino license?
Bitcoin casinos use offshore online gaming licenses to provide crypto gambling services to the citizens of a country that is usually very restrictive to online gambling. An offshore casino license is a necessity in the online gambling industry.
An online gaming operator needs the license in order to pass the application for a merchant bank account, gain financial stability, security, public trust, and the ability to cooperate with the best and biggest software providers in the world of online betting.
Can I play at casinos without a gambling license?
Technically, yes, you can play casino games in casinos without a valid license. In fact, many Bitcoin casinos do not hold Bitcoin casino licenses, but unlicensed operators can put you in a very dangerous situation.
What are the drawbacks of offshore casino operators?
Having less protection and regulation is by far the most important drawback of cryptocurrency casinos operating offshore. Cryptocurrency gambling and sports betting are serious businesses and it is hard to negotiate problems and settle issues between online casino players and casino operators without a strong, no-nonsense regulator.
Additionally, offshore gaming licenses will not impose very strict corporate services, bank account controls, and some other safety features designed for responsible gambling.
Which gambling license requires me to leave the least amount of personal information to a casino?
All gambling sites need your basic information in order to comply with their licensing requirements and to make sure you are of legal age. Tightly regulated online casinos will do this at all times, but if you really want to skip giving any info, you should try with “pure” Bitcoin casinos.
They accept Bitcoin or crypto only and they have the loosest terms and conditions out there, but beware – they could easily be a scam casino.