How do I complain about alleged illegal activity?
In the case of a complaint about alleged
illegal activity on the part of a licence holder, the Gambling
Commission will consider further investigation if the complaint
- a breach of the licensing conditions
- a breach of the codes of practice
- wider concerns about the way in which a licence holder is
Please complete our complaints form with details of your
Do you investigate all reports of alleged unlicensed or
Our resources are limited and we cannot
investigate every complaint. Generally we use our resources to
investigate matters of:
- national or regional importance
- high risk to the licensing objectives
- high risk to the integrity of the licensing regime.
Enforcement action in respect of local issues
is normally the responsibility of the relevant local licensing
authority. We provide advice and assistance as needed.
Any failure on the part of a local licensing
authority to take action on a report of unlicensed or illegal
activity is not a reason for us to take on the complaint.
Some complaints are recorded for intelligence
purposes only. Others are recorded and dealt with on the next visit
to the licence holder, and those of a serious or pressing nature
are investigated immediately.
We aim to use the lowest effective level of
intervention to deal with an issue, for example if we are satisfied
that a licence holder has committed an isolated breach and has
taken prompt remedial action then that may be the end of the
matter. If a licence holder has been wilful or negligent then this
could result in formal action being taken, or if a licence holder
has breached the law through inadvertence or ignorance then a
willingness on their part to take immediate steps to rectify the
matter may mean that it is not in the public interest for us to
prosecute them, even where an offence has been committed.
Can we help to get your money back?
Generally the answer to this question is no.
We have no power to order a licence holder to refund stakes which
you have freely placed with a gambling business or put into a
If you have lost a significant sum of money
this may be the catalyst for recognising that you have a problem
with gambling. In such circumstances you can ask a licence holder
to exclude you from the premises or website and seek help from one
of the problem gambling organisations.