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Running a lottery or raffle

Lotteries and raffles are a form of gambling and you must follow the rules for the type of lottery you plan to run, otherwise you may be breaking the law.

You can only run a lottery or raffle to raise money for charity. The type of licence you need depends on the type of lottery you want to run and whether or not it is held online, which includes lotteries on social media.

To run lotteries or raffles that will have ticket sales of more than £20,000 each, or £250,000 in a calendar year, you’ll need to apply for a licence from us. 

If your lottery or raffle is smaller than this, you can register with your local authority.

Read our information and guides on ensuring lotteries, raffles, prize competitions and free draws are run legally.

How we tackle illegal lotteries

We take every report of illegal lotteries and raffles seriously so that we can review illegal gambling activity being offered to consumers in Britain.

We use a range of tools to do this. We write out to promoters of illegal lotteries to advise that activity is illegal. Where we decide to intervene, we will consider working with third parties, including website providers, social media businesses and payment providers to take down illegal activity.

If you think a lottery is a scam, you need to report this to Action Fraud (opens in new tab).

If you think the lottery is illegal and should be running under a licence or a local authority registration, you should report it to us or the local authority responsible for the area it is operating from.

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