The History of Australia Gambling Legislation

In Australia, gambling is hugely popular and the industry keeps growing each day. Since 1985, national shelling out for this industry has increased by over tenfold. Luckily, with regards to the legality of on the web gambling, Australia features a pretty straightforward approach compared to several other countries all over the world. All gambling in AU is controlled by the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA), which requires all public gambling to come back a number of its profits to the city.

A lot of the gambling industry in AU is run by state institutions. For on line gambling, the rule is straightforward. No AU residents can own, advertise for, or operate an online gambling site, but they are liberated to join and play at international web casinos. Read on to learn more about AU's gambling history and how it affects players today.

Types of Gambling

Understand the Gambling Act of 2003 and you’ll understand Australia gambling law.

The first sort of gambling to be legislated in AU was horse betting. In 1920, Bookmaking was banned. From then until the development of the Totalizator Agency Board (TAB) in 1961, citizens could only bet on horse racing while these were on the course at the race it self.

Slots, or Pokies, are observed outside land casinos and therefore are a popular way for charitable foundations to improve money. They're usually positioned in hotels and bars. Pokies are regulated by the Department of Internal Affairs and therefore are allowed only to rise with their prescribed maximum jackpot amounts.

A law was passed in '09 that will require all Pokies to have Player Information Displays. These explain to you how long you have already been playing and how much money spent, and also encourage you to simply take breaks. That is part of the Department of Internal Affairs' policy that if gambling will be legal, consumers should be informed of the risks and pitfalls of the industry, and also have use of proper resources if they fall victim to a gambling addiction.

Lotteries are also considered regulated legal gambling in AU. The initial official "Art Union" occurred in 1877, organised by the Otago Art Society. Ever since then, these have been used to improve funds for societies throughout the nation. In the first days, AU lottery prizes were small compared with Australian lotteries, encouraging many residents to illegally purchase tickets in the Australian Tattersall Lottery.

In 1950 the Second Labour Government published a report reviewing national lotteries and found that sales were suprisingly low. In response, the National Government released the Golden Kiwi Lottery in 1961. Golden Kiwi operated until 1989, when the Instant Kiwi scratch card lottery was introduced.

The AU government includes a special branch specialized in lotteries, called the Australia Lotteries Commission (Lotto AU). You will find four lotteries total, including the weekly Lotto, Big Wednesday, twice daily Keno and Instant Kiwi scratch cards. The Gambling Act of 2003 requires that all players be 18 years or older.

Since all AU gambling must hand back to town, profits from these lotteries are distributed to the Australia Lottery Grants Board, which funds organisations working together with national sports, arts, and community projects, such as the Australia Film Commission, Creative Australia and Sport Australia. Just how much donated currently is almost $4 billion.

Of course, we cannot forget land casinos. Australia currently has 6 land casinos total, including four SKYCITY casinos in Auckland, Hamilton, Queenstown, and Wharf casino, as well as the Dunedin Casino and Christchurch Casino. To enter a casino, you must be twenty years or older.

Online gambling is strongly regulated in AU, but only for the owners and operators, not for the buyer. It is completely safe and legal to play at top international online casinos or betting rooms.

The Gambling Act of 2003

AU gambling laws are designed to direct money back to the community, so gambling is a positive thing for the country.

The biggest little bit of legislation affecting on line gambling in Australia is the Gambling Act of 2003. Based on the Department of Internal Affairs the principal concern with this law and the licensure regulations that derive from it's that the national community benefits from gambling profits and that the government can minimise the harm done by problem gambling. Community interests are wide reaching, ranging from creative and arts projects to sports organisations, organisations that provide gambling services, or research being done in to the social aftereffects of problem gambling.

The Gambling Act of 2003 has the following objectives:

  • Control the gambling industry's growth
  • Minimise harm done by problem gambling
  • Authorise some gambling while prohibiting the rest
  • Encourage responsible gambling and limit associated criminal behaviour
  • Ensure that games and betting companies are fair
  • Ensure that proceeds are donated back to the community
  • Allow the community to be involved in decision making regarding the gambling industry

Governmental Agencies That Regulate Gambling

The Department of Internal Affairs

  • Writes legislation regarding gambling
  • In charge of licensing gambling activities, except casinos
  • Prosecutes violators of the law
  • Educates the public about the law

The Ministry of Health

  • Provides services for problem gamblers and funds these services
  • Published the three year policy for Preventing and Minimising Gambling Harm in 2011-2013, as well as a six year strategic arrange for 2011-2016

The Gambling Commission

  • Handles all licensing for casinos, including new licenses and renewals
  • Reviews agreements between casino operators and the casino license holders, including any changes in agreements
  • Handles all complaints regarding the way the Department of Internal Affairs handles complaints associated with Class 4 gambling
  • Specifies as well as revokes conditions for casino licenses
  • Advises Ministers on the current situation regarding problem gambling
  • Receives and makes decisions on appeals to the Department of Internal Affairs' regulatory and licensing decisions

The Australia Lotteries Commission

  • Regulates all lotteries in Australia
  • Passes profits on to the Australia Lottery Grants Board

Legislation Timeline

1920 Bookmaking is banned
1961 Totalizator Agency Board is established
1977 Gaming and Lotteries Act is passed
1981 Boxing and Wrestling Act is passed
1990 Casino Control Act is passed
1991 Casino Control Regulations are passed regarding Applications and Hours
1992 Gaming and Lotteries Regulations are established regarding License Fees
1993 Gaming and Lotteries Prizes Notice is passed
1994 Casino Control Regulations come about regarding Certificates of Approval and Warrants
1997 Casino Control (Moratorium) Amendment Act is passed
1998 Gaming and Lotteries Regulations are passed regarding the Problem Gambling Levy
2000 Casino Control (Moratorium) Amendment Act is passed
2003 Gambling Act of 2003 is passed
2003 Racing Act of 2003 is passed
2005 Gambling Amendment Act of 2005 is passed
2009 Player Information Displays (PID) are mandated for all Pokies