A Brief Overview of Australian Online Gambling Laws
One of the very first considerations you will have to take into account as a wagering fan is the legal status of the pastime in your country and jurisdiction of residence.
Doing so is of paramount importance since it makes all the difference between your getting to enjoy your favorite games secure in the knowledge that you are not contravening any laws and finding yourself facing legal action in the event of being found to have engaged in illegal activity.
So how do things stand if you happen to be an Australian resident? We examine its legislation in relation to one of the most popular leisure activities on the globe.
Australian Gambling Laws - Prohibited Activities
Wagering activities in Australia are legislated by the Interactive Gambling Act of 2001. Under the act, operators are not permitted to offer illegal interactive wagering or unlicenced wagering services to residents.
Operators are also prohibited from providing domestic-based virtual wagering services to residents of other countries. It is worth noting that operators found in breach of this legislation risk facing steep fines - $1.1 million per day for the organisation or $220,000 per day for individuals at the helm of operations.
Incidentally, this legislation covers an extensive range of betting activities including popular casino staples such as craps, blackjack, poker, and roulette. It is also worth noting that both domestic and foreign establishments are obliged to comply with this legislation regardless of whether they happen to operate within the country or outside its borders.
Australian Gambling Laws - Legal Activities
What betting activities are legally permitted? Live wagering is generally considered legal as long as it takes place in licenced establishments such as casinos and hotels. Examples of betting activities which you will be able to participate in when visiting such venues include baccarat, blackjack, bingo (popularly referred to as housie), roulette, and poker.
As a result of its status as a nation of sports enthusiasts, auto racing, as well as sports betting, are extremely popular. The lottery is also another category of wagering which is particularly enjoyed by residents as well. Fans of these activities (auto racing, sports betting and the lottery) are also permitted by law to participate in them online as well.
Online Betting in Australia
Although it seems as though online gambling is completely prohibited by legislation, it is worth noting that it applies to operators as opposed to clientele. This is because its primary purpose is protecting residents from any adverse effects of engaging in wagering activities. Hence technically speaking, wagering online in the nation is actually legal. And fans of virtual betting can actually visit online establishments and enjoy every game they have to offer.
However, it is worth noting that players who fail to ascertain the reputation and licencing status of an establishment before opting to wager on its games will find themselves at risk of being treated unethically by such establishments. For example, such operators may refuse to pay them any cash they have won or even refund any deposits they have paid.
And under such circumstances, the clients will be unable to avail themselves of any legal protection. As a result, conducting a thorough background check on any betting website you are interested in is highly recommended.