The Legality of Online Gambling in Canada

July 26, 2017

The Legality of Online Gambling in Canada

The question of whether gambling online is legal in Canada or not is quite complex at best. Depending on which side you are coming from, the answer can sway either way. In comparison to land based casinos in Canada; there is no disputing the fact that they are legal as Canadian brick and mortar casinos are fully covered by laws that are codified. However, when it comes to online casinos, it is prohibited for a site to be established and operated from Canada. The only way that you can actually gamble online in Canada, is if you do so at an online casino that is operated with an offshore license.

The Canadian Criminal Code is a recognized codification act which criminalizes certain works and acts. This act does not specifically criminalize gambling on the internet though, but it does so only if the player breaches acknowledged areas of the actual code. In other instances, the code also looks at age restrictions at the time of registration (in which case, the player can be criminally charged). The particular wording within Canadian gambling laws is more complicated, such as the term ‘Gaming and Betting’. However, these are the fundamental terms which guide the legality of internet casinos in Canada. Furthermore, while the Legal Code may prohibit Canadians from taking part in gambling online, there is absolutely no solid foundation put in place to effectively enforce the prohibition.

Presently, each state in Canada manages its own gambling regulations. That said, there’s the Kahnawake Gaming Commission, which works inside North America, but is technically a governing body on its own. Kahnawake Gaming Commission does not only oversee the operations of casino sites in Canada, but it is also among the most-used government bodies for websites around the world. The Gaming Commission has the responsibility of monitoring compliance with the gambling laws in the Mohawk Territory, Kahnawake within Quebec. Furthermore, it is the organization that also covers the online poker, online casino, as well as the sportsbook markets with legitimate licenses. The guidelines of the commission include fair gaming, payout rates, and geographical bounds. Currently, the Commission issues four types of licenses within the online gaming market.

The question associated with what makes a Canadian online casino lawful, will remain unclear until succinct laws are written and codified with relevant mechanics put in place. Though this may actually take some time, tons of players continue to play at online casinos every day. Again, as evidence suggests, no one has been apprehended with the criminal offense of actively playing any online casino game. Even if a particular law states a site is not permitted to operate in a specific province, most websites tend to disregard this by operating beyond the jurisdiction.

Despite this, Canada is a country with a balanced approach to betting and the physical casino business is also extremely well operated. This, in turn, stimulates players to engage in online gambling, making Canada a nation with a large percentage of people who look to play online for real money. Though the laws relating to online gambling are a complicated to comprehend, gambling is prevalent in Canada and the lack of any form of enforcement towards those who gamble online signals that it is 100% legal.  Before you attempt to gamble online in Canada, make sure you do so with an offshore licensed casino and check out reviews of the online casinos at a reputable information website to ensure you do not get scammed. This way, you can rest assured that you won’t run into any obstacles.

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