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Gambling Commission Launches Public Consultation on Lottery Regulations

lottery ballsA new public consultation has been launched by the United Kingdom Gambling Commission, regarding the current requirements in place for regulating society lotteries. The consultation will look into issues relating to fair gaming as well as an open licensing objective, whilst also ensuring transparency for customers is addressed in the process.

That consultation began on December 19 and it is set to continue right up until March 12, 2020. Throughout the process, suggestions will be made for how to strengthen the licensing conditions and codes of practice that exist at the moment, also known as the LCCP. From this taking place, the Commission hopes to proceed with successful and fair lottery gaming in the UK. Additionally, it aims to ensure that all consumers have the necessary information prior to making the decision on whether or not to proceed with gambling.

It is actually Section 99 of the United Kingdom’s Gambling Act 2005, which requires the Commission to ensure that all lottery operators holding licences which have been issued to non-commercial societies, adhere to a specific set of conditions. This section of the Act is entitled “Mandatory Conditions of Lottery Operating Licence”.

The Commission Speaks Out on the Consultation

“These conditions includes the monetary or percentage limits on proceeds (ticket sales) and prizes in lotteries run by such societies or by local authorities…”,

uk gambling commissionsaid the Gambling Commission of the UK. It is stated in the eleventh part of Section 99 of the Act, that the Secretary of State can vary by Order a monetary amount or percentage noted within that section. Meanwhile, in the same vein, part 10 of that same Section states that nothing within it prevents the UKGC from attaching one or more conditions to a lottery operating licence of a kind similar to but more onerous than a requirement of 99.

Essentially, when you look at both of these parts of Section 99 together, it simply means that the Order will make changes to the limits currently in legislation, if such should be chosen to be implemented. At the same time though, until those changes come into operation within licence conditions for such licence holders, the operators of such games will not be able to reap any benefits from them. So, in order for the Commission to make any changes to the LCCP, it is important that it consults with those who could be affected by them.

The Gambling Commission’s statement also made a point of highlighting various concerns about what it labelled as a “lack of transparency” when speaking of the odds of winning a prize. Furthermore, there was a focus placed on how much of the money that is raised through lottery ticket sales actually goes to good causes in the end, as well as which good causes they are. This is information that consumers of lottery tickets need to know in full.

The Proposed Lottery Changes So Far

lottery tickets

One or two proposed changes have already been mentioned, with the primary one being the increase of the maximum amount that each individual player can win from lottery draws. At the moment, this figure stands at £400,000, but the change would see that sum increased to a maximum of £500,000.

At the same time, a discussion over an increase in the limit of ticket sales is expected. This figure current stands at £4 million, while the proposal is expected to suggest an increase to £5 million. The annual aggregate proceeds limit will also be increased through the same suggestion, from £10 million to £50 million. Both of those limits have not been altered in any way since over 10 years ago, making this quite the historic consultation in itself.

Yet, the Commission isn’t closed to receiving other opinions and views on how to strengthen certain aspects of the licensing conditions and codes of practice. In fact, in its statement, the Commission said that it is “seeking views” regarding this. Therefore, any consumer, operator, charity, organisation or other party wishing to contribute something towards the discussions taking place, is encouraged to submit ideas via the Gambling Commission website.

Additional information given out by the UKGC is that the consultation will be of interest to those people who consume lottery products, both current licensees and prospective ones, as well as organisations that are concerned with gambling and social responsibility.

Various details are requested from anyone looking to submit ideas or suggestions, including your name, valid email address, if you are part of an organisation and if you consent to having your name and organisation publicised to indicate that you have responded to the consultation, amongst other things. As noted, the meeting will come to an end on March 12, giving plenty of time for ideas to be submitted and discussed by the Commission and those parties involved.

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