Isle of Man Gambling License
The Isle of Man is a respected online gambling licensing authority that issued its first license in 2001. Any gambling site licensed by the Isle of Man can be considered a safe and legitimate place to play real money games. Unlike some of the other gambling licenses that can be obtained in other parts of the world, a license from the Isle of Man holds weight in terms of safety and legitimacy.
This is one of the few licensing authorities whitelisted by the UK's Gambling Commission. What that means is the UK government is satisfied with the standards and depth of investigation that go into issuing licenses to operators. Any company with a license from the Isle of Man is able to advertise and offer services to citizens of the UK.
Some of the biggest names in online poker, sports betting, and gambling are registered through the Isle of Man. These include names as big as PokerStars, Paddy Power, and Full Tilt Poker.
The mission statement of the Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission is as follows:
"As a body, it is statutorily charged to ensure that gambling is conducted honestly and fairly, remains free from criminal influence and exploitation and does not cause harm to the public interest, individuals and families."
The commission's primary objective is to ensure the protection of players in order to maintain the legitimacy of licenses issued by the Isle of Man. These goals are accomplished by:
- Ensuring all operators have a system in place to protect player funds.
- All deposits and winnings are held in a secure location enforceable by the laws of the Isle of Man.
- A bank guarantee is required between the operator and a bank. If the gambling site is unable to pay its players, then the bank does so.
- A trust fund must be established. The trust deed controls how money enters and leaves the bank account of the operator.
- The gambling commission conducts random audits to ensure the money held in the bank and trust fund match player accounts.
- All gambling sites must be audited by an independent firm that ensures the randomness and fairness of the games.
- The commission monitors the advertising, activities, and policies of all operators.
- The commission is able to receive and investigate player complaints.
Licensing Process and Fees
A full license from the Isle of Man can be obtained only after submitting an application, paying the proper fees, and underdoing a thorough investigation. Anyone interested in obtaining a license must establish a Manx company, keep at least two local directors, one local designated officer or operations manager, and keep gambling accounts in an Isle of Man bank.
After the application has been submitted, the commission will perform an investigation that looks into the backgrounds of all people involved in the operation, the backgrounds of anyone with a 5% or greater stake in the operation, the financials of the operation, the terms and conditions, game rules, business plan, internal controls, software providers, and much more.
All necessary paperwork can be found at the Isle of Man gambling website posted at the bottom of this page. It's a fairly in-depth vetting process that ensures not just anybody can come in and set up shop. It's a chore for operators, but it gives players the confidence that a license from the Isle of Man actually means something.
- Application fee: £5,000
- Yearly license fee: £35,000
What This All Means for Players
What this all means for players is any gambling site with a license from the Isle of Man is probably a good place to play real money games. The Isle of Man doesn't just hand out licenses to whoever wants one. Sites must be well organized, financially stable, and owned by reputable people.
You can also check the Isle of Man website for a list of current license holders. If you're ever in doubt about the authenticity of anyone's claim to have a license, you can check that list and see if that person/site is legitimate.
If you are thinking about applying for a license from the Isle of Man or are just looking for more information on what they are all about you can visit their website or get in contact with them either through email or phone. We have gone ahead and given all of their information below:
Phone: 01624 694331
Author: Wesley Burns
Updated: March 2015