The United Kingdom Gambling Commission
The UKGC was formed under the Gambling Act of 2005 and in collaboration with other licensing authorities, regulates all commercial gambling in Great Britain.
Every online casino and betting site which operates within the UK must legally have a license from the UKGC, and when you’re playing at your favourite licensed casino, it’s important to have trust in those regulators working behind the scenes for your benefit.
Our team of experts have compiled this guide to help you further understand The UK Gambling Commission and how it benefits your casino experience.
The Latest Casinos with a UK Licence
This is the complete overview of every single UKGC licenced casino we have reviewed. It is in reverse-chronological order, meaning that the latest casino is always on top. If you are visiting us from the UK this list will therefore be identical to our overview of all new casinos. This s because UK visitors only see UK licenced casinos.
Features of the UKGC Gambling License
The UKGC license affects your gameplay in many positive ways and some of these features you may already have come across in a UK casino:
If you play at a casino with a UKGC license then you can expect to have verification checks carried out using your basic details when you first open your account, the UKGC implemented these checks to help prevent underage gambling. As well as requesting information to verify if players can ‘afford’ to gamble and checking that deposited funds are from legitimate sources.
Responsible gaming tools
One of the UKGC’s main objectives is to protect and help vulnerable casino players and the organisation sets out very strict guidelines for casinos in the UK to adhere to, which include gaming limits, time out periods and self exclusions for players.
The Key Responsibilities of the UKGC
The Gambling Commission has 3 main objectives that are encompassed within its gaming licenses:
- To ensure gambling is always conducted in an ethical and open way.
- To protect vulnerable people and minors from being affected, exploited or harmed from gambling.
- To prevent gambling from being linked to criminal activities.
How Do You Know if an Online Casino Holds a UKGC License?
It’s simple to check if a casino holds an online gambling license UK, just scroll down to the bottom of any page and look for the distinctive logo of the UKGC, which should be displayed clearly and with a hyperlink to direct you to the casino’s license lodged on the UKGC’s website.
You may also search the UK Gambling Commission’s website and get more information about a casino’s license status.
What are the benefits of a UKGC license compared to others?
The UKGC gambling license is seen as one of the most credible and strictest licenses within the industry, with the proactive organisation responsible for providing licenses to online casinos who operate only in a responsible manner. With fines for license breaches being extremely costly to a casino in many ways.
As well as high licensing fees, by holding a casino license UK the gambling commission will charge a higher rate of tax on the casinos gross revenue and whilst this is higher than other regulators, it helps to instill confidence in players that they can enjoy incredibly safe gameplay at their chosen new casino.
Obtaining a license from the UKGC forms a legally binding contract and licenses are not easy to obtain, with the organisation deeply examining an online casino where many factors are taken into consideration:
- Ability to pay out winnings
- Sufficient financial status
- Security of player information
- Sufficient measures in place to protect vulnerable players
What are the risks involved in playing at an online casino which does not have a UKGC license?
It’s extremely important that players who reside in the UK choose to play at one of the many UKGC licensed casinos out there, it really isn’t worth the risk of exposing yourself:
- Personal and financial details could be exposed, it may even be possible that your hard-earned cash is used to fund crime.
- It’s possible that the casino may not pay out your winnings, being designed to scam players out of money and not offer a return.
- A casino’s RNG (random number generator) is tested rigorously to ensure fairness and reliability by the UKGC, meaning that unlicensed casinos could ‘fix’ game outcomes to their advantage.
- Should a player have a dispute with a non-licensed casino, they would not receive any backup from the UKGC and would have great difficulties in gaining legal assistance to find a resolution.
Recent legislative changes
Following a 2019 review of online gambling, the UKGC has announced that in April 2020 it will ban gambling with credit cards across all forms of remote gambling, with approximately 10.5 million adults who gamble at UK licensed casinos it’s estimated that a fifth of these will soon need to find alternative payment methods to fund their casino accounts.
GAMSTOP registration by online gambling operators will be made mandatory from March 31st, meaning that all UKGC casinos will have to sign up to the self-exclusion scheme in order to help gambling addicts easily exclude themselves across all UK casinos.
How can the UKGC help me if I Have a Complaint?
In the unlikely event that you have a negative experience with any UKGC licensed casinos, your first point of contact should be the casinos own complaints procedure, who by the terms of the license should have an ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution) body who would then examine any complaint made.
The UK Gambling Commission will not directly get involved with complaints, but they can review cases made against a casino to check if the operator fulfilled its licensing obligations.
1. Can any online casino advertise in the UK?
No, only those online casinos and betting sites which hold the UKGC licence can promote their business in the UK.
2. Does the UKGC set withdrawal process times?
This isn’t a legal requirement of the UKGC license and the gambling laws in the UK don’t set a specific time frame for a casino to pay out winnings. However online casinos do have to operate fairly and adhere to a very strict code of conduct and should pay out withdrawals without long waiting times.
3. Can I still use Autoplay on slot games at a UKGC casino?
Yes, you can but there are restrictions in place to limit how many spins you can make using this auto feature in any one game. The UKGC implemented this to prevent players from becoming addicted to gambling and spending more than they can afford.
4. Do software developers need a UKGC license?
If a game developer provides its games to a UK online casino then it must have its own UKGC license, with software complying to strict standards as well as many required features incorporated into each game.
5. What is the LCCP?
This stands for License Conditions and Codes of Practice and is the UKGC’s framework for online casinos to follow when it comes to the way they operate.
6. Am I protected by the UKGC when I place sports bets at an online casino?
Yes, the UKGC license covers all verticals of a casino’s operations including sports betting and live casino too.