One of the top gambling companies operating in Australia is celebrating this week. According to multiple sources, Lottoland has won a major court battle against the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) this week. It’s great news for this Gibraltar-based gambling operator.
The legal battle was over Lottoland’s jackpot betting product. Today, we’re going to look at the set of gambling laws in Australia. We’ll also look at what the court victory means for Lottoland moving forward.
Australia is known for having a complex set of gambling laws. Here, states can set most of their own laws on land-based and online gambling. The central government, called the Commonwealth, oversees the entire gambling industry.
The Interactive Gambling Act of 2001 is the main piece of legislation that regulates online gambling in Australia. This set of laws makes it illegal for gambling companies to offer real-money games of chance to players in the country. This includes most forms of casino gambling and wagering on sports as they take place.
Today, many Australians choose to play through gambling sites in Europe. Most of these websites offer a wide range of both casino and sports betting odds. There are also several companies that offer lottery-style gambling services here.
One of the biggest, called Lottoland, has been dealing with numerous issues with lawmakers in Australia. Not long ago, the ACMA took Lottoland to court over its jackpot betting service, claiming that it’s a game of chance. Fortunately, Lottoland has won a major court battle against this group.
The ACMA took this case all the way to the Supreme Court. Reports indicate that a court hearing took place in July, and Lottoland came out on top. Luke Brill, CEO of Lottoland, gave a statement to the media today.
“The Supreme Court of NSW has today confirmed that Lottoland Australia’s Jackpot Betting products are fully compliant with Australian law,” he said. “Lottoland Australia has always maintained that ACMA’s view of our Jackpot Betting products is wrong, unfair, and uncompetitive—and today I am pleased to say that we have been vindicated. With this matter now settled, Lottoland Australia can finally get on with what it does best—providing new and exciting products that Australian punters love.”
It’s extremely exciting news for this company, which claims to have over 750,000 Australian users. Unfortunately, the ACMA may appeal the court’s decision and continue its effort to push Lottoland out of Australia.
Tabcorp, Australia’s leading local gambling operator, may also pursue legal action against the company. It will be a tough road for Lottoland to establish its operations here, yet one that will hopefully pay off.
Several major politicians in Australia have recently begun calling for new regulations towards the internet gambling industry. They feel that the current set of laws are not clear enough. With many foreign online gambling sites available here, more people are choosing to make bets online without regulation.
The fact that these sites are unregulated means that they do not pay taxes to the government. Essentially, they are able to profit off the players without benefit to the country. There’s also been more discussion about the rise of gambling addiction in Australia.
Last month, the Guardian published an article on problem gambling rates in this country. According to Victoria’s Responsible Gaming Foundation, nearly 40% of gambling addicts in the country are diagnosed with a mental health issue. Some politicians, including Victoria state Labor MP Michaela Settle, want to see better oversight of the industry.
Whether or not new regulations will hurt Lottoland’s business is unknown. Make sure to stay tuned for more updates over the next several months!
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