Guidance to licensing authorities
- Changes to the Guidance for Licensing Authorities
- Part 1: General guidance on the role and responsibilities of licensing authorities in gambling regulation
- Part 2: The licensing framework
- Part 3: The Gambling Commission
- Part 4: Licensing authorities
- Part 5: Principles to be applied by licensing authorities
- Part 6: Licensing authority policy statement
- Part 7: Premises licences
- Part 8: Responsible authorities and interested parties definitions
- Part 9: Premises licence conditions
- Part 10: Review of premises licence by licensing authority
- Part 11: Provisional statements
- Part 12: Rights of appeal and judicial review
- Part 13: Information exchange
- Part 14: Temporary use notices
- Part 15: Occasional use notices
- Part 16: Gaming machines
- Part 17: Casinos
- Part 18: Bingo
- Part 19: Betting premises
- Part 20: Tracks
- Part 21: Adult gaming centres
- Part 22: Licensed family entertainment centres
- Part 23: Introduction to permits
- Part 24: Unlicensed family entertainment centres
- Part 25: Clubs
- Part 26: Premises licensed to sell alcohol
- Part 27: Prize gaming and prize gaming permits
- Part 28: Non-commercial and private gaming, betting and lotteries
- Part 29: Poker
- Part 30: Travelling fairs
- Part 31: Crown immunity and excluded premises
- Part 32: Territorial application of the Gambling Act 2005
- Part 33: Door supervision
- Part 34: Small society lotteries
- Part 35: Chain gift schemes
- Part 36: Compliance and enforcement matters
- Appendix A: Summary of machine provisions by premises
- Appendix B: Summary of gaming machine categories and entitlements
- Appendix C: Summary of gaming entitlements for clubs and alcohol-licensed premises
- Appendix D: Summary of offences under the Gambling Act 2005
- Appendix E: Summary of statutory application forms and notices
- Appendix F: Inspection powers
- Appendix G: Licensing authority delegations
- Appendix H: Poker games and prizes
- Appendix I: Glossary of terms
6 - Non-commercial ‘casino night’
28.19. A non-commercial casino night is an event where participants stake money on casino-style games, such as poker or roulette, at a non-commercial event, where none of the money the organisers raise from the event is used for private gain.
28.20. Apart from reasonable costs, proceeds (including any entrance fees, sponsorship, the difference between stakes placed and pay-out made):
- must not be used for private gain
- must all be given to a good cause.
Reasonable costs would include costs incurred by providing the prizes. If third parties are selling goods or services at the event, this does not count as money raised for the charity or good cause and can be retained by that third party.
28.21. A non-commercial casino night can be run without a licence, or any other form of permission, providing the operation of the gaming falls into one of the three categories discussed below.
28.22. Organisers should note that, under the Act, it is illegal to organise a commercial casino night outside of a licensed casino. However an application can be made for a temporary use notice (TUN) in respect of other premises to offer gaming on a commercial basis, so far as the appropriate operating licence covers the proposed activities in the application, but then only in respect of equal chance gaming organised on a tournament basis with a single overall winner (SI No 3157/2007: The Gambling Act 2005 (Temporary Use Notices) Regulations 2007) (opens in new tab). There can, however, be more than one competition with a single winner held at the individual event covered by a specific TUN.
Casino night as non-commercial prize gaming
28.23. Casino nights can be held as non-commercial prize gaming19. The players must be told what good cause will benefit from the profits of the gaming before placing a bet. The prizes must be advertised in advance and must not depend on the number of people playing or the stakes raised. In non-commercial prize gaming, the casino gaming determines the individual winner or winners, for example by counting who has the most casino chips at a set time. The winners are then awarded the prizes that have been advertised in advance.
Casino night as non-commercial equal chance gaming
28.24. Casino nights can also be run as non-commercial equal chance gaming20, where the chances are equally favourable to all participants and players are not competing against a bank. In non-commercial equal chance gaming, the charitable funds are usually raised through an entrance fee, participation fee, or through other payments related to the gaming. The maximum amount that a player may be charged is £8 per day which includes entrance or participation fees, stakes and any other payments in relation to the gaming. Organisers must ensure that the total amount paid out in prizes remains below £600 in total across all players. However, where an event is the final one of a series in which all of the players have previously taken part, a higher prize fund of up to £900 is allowed.
Casino night as private gaming
28.25. A casino night may also be run under the private gaming provisions in the Act. Private gaming may only occur in a place to which the public does not have access, normally a private dwelling, hostel, hall of residence or similar establishment. No charge may be made for participation in private gaming including an entrance fee or other charge for admission, nor may any amounts be deducted from stakes or prizes. No profits can be made from private gaming, irrespective of how the organiser intended to use those profits and, thus, even if intended for charitable purposes.
28.26. Private gaming is restricted to equal chance gaming except where it is domestic or residential gaming.
28.27. Private gaming can potentially take place on commercial premises in circumstances where a members’ club hires a room in, for example, a pub or hotel for a private function where equal chance gaming only is played. However, organisers would need to scrutinise very carefully the arrangements put in place, as detailed at paragraph 28.11 above.Previous section
Incidental lotteries Next section
Non-commercial race night
Last updated: 14 September 2023
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