Until the new State Treaty on Gambling comes into force next July, the online gambling industry is not yet officially regulated. Business is nevertheless flourishing, because it is under the EU flag.
Whereby also in Germany new rules have long since taken effect, after all, only a transitional period has now been granted, which means that the industry is officially tolerated until the new state treaty comes into force. But what does the transition period or toleration mean? Can online casinos simply operate freely or were fixed rules not always applicable? This article deals with this.
The regulation of online casinos shows very clearly that Germany is a federal state - the individual federal states want to find a joint solution, which was not easy at all.
EU license brought access
It is often claimed that online casinos are illegal and therefore offer and provide illegal gambling. This view is - fundamentally - wrong. The majority of online providers act legally, but not according to a state law, but according to the laws of the EU.
Gambling, state laws, federal laws and the EU are factors that seem incomprehensible at first glance:
- Gambling - this is regulated individually in each country. While France still has a single gambling law, Germany has practically 16 individual regulations. Here, federalism is once again taking center stage.
- State laws - they are based on the old State Treaty on Gambling from 2021, when online gambling was treated only stepmotherly and immediately assigned to the state lottery and oddset providers. Schleswig-Holstein was an exception and joined the treaty only later. In the meantime, the federal state issued its own gambling licenses, which were recently extended.
- Federal laws - they have little influence on gambling. Therefore, federal laws must ensure that the EU directives are observed.
- EU - it actually lifts the bans from the state laws. According to EU directives, anyone with an EU license is allowed to offer services within the EU. Boundless. Online gambling falls back on exactly this regulation.
All reputable online casinos have undergone checks, because this is necessary to obtain a gambling license, which in turn is valid throughout the EU. Thus, the casinos operate with the EU license from Malta or even Gibraltar. Several providers also use their German license from Schleswig-Holstein, which of course applies to the federal state.
With the current transitional regulation, which all providers who already meet the requirements of the next State Treaty on Gambling are entitled to, an imaginary legal advance license is thus offered in Germany.
Chaos soon to end?
The current regulatory chaos will soon come to an end, which is good news for BTC casinos like Bitstarz. This means that the countermeasures should finally be comprehensively clarified by the summer, as they are still causing trouble. Gambling advertising in particular has often attracted negative attention in recent months. But this was not only due to the advertising, but also to its charisma: a casino which under German law can only operate openly for citizens in Schleswig-Holstein and is otherwise in the grey zone cannot advertise in Bavaria. With a nationwide license, the problem is of course off the table.
But what does the regulation say in general?
- Control - a new gambling authority will control online providers, but also the normal gambling providers. This authority is responsible for issuing licenses.
- Federal license - online casinos receive a German license that is valid throughout Germany.
- Gamer protection - a major issue of dispute is always the protection of players. This is further intensified, whereby the providers themselves are of course also taken into account. With the gambling authority a block list is to be led, on which players can be set. Players are to be set in addition, by Casinos on the list, if the play behavior of the customer points in the direction of the play craze.
- Limits - the betting limit is restricted. Monthly players are only allowed to wager 1,000.00 Euro for gambling, whereby winnings are probably excluded from the sum. Again and again, there is talk of a 'master account'. Players are supposed to register with this account and insert their casinos there. Thus the limit should be able to be checked also casino-spreading. Whether and to what extent other games of chance such as sports betting are included is not clear.
Purely from a German perspective, online gambling operates in a grey area until the final state treaty, but was tolerated due to EU regulations.