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Lottery submissions guidance

Guidance for information collected in the Lottery Submissions service.

Common terms and definitions

Return to Good Cause
Return to good cause is the amount of proceeds (ticket sales) applied directly to the purposes of the society or in the case of a local authority, to a purpose for which the authority has the power to incur expenditure.
The first requirement of any lottery conducted in reliance of a lottery operating licence is that at least 20% of the total ticket sales must be passed on to the purposes of the society or local authority, which the lottery is promoting. A return of less than 20% of the proceeds to the purposes of the society or local authority is an offence. [GA2005, s99(2)]. For the purposes of the Gambling Act 2005, return to good cause is referred to as ‘profits’. ‘Profits’ are the amount of proceeds less any deductions for prizes, rollovers, and reasonable expenses incurred in connection with running the lottery [GA2005, s254].
Branded lottery
A branded lottery is when multiple society lotteries are promoted under a common brand or image, either in rotation with other societies or as a regular occurrence for that single society. A lottery is a branded lottery if it is run as part of a lottery scheme that other societies also participate in and promote their lottery under the same overall brand name. A branded lottery is not the name of your campaign or scheme. If you run a fundraising campaign or lottery every year at certain times (e.g. Spring Raffle 2022), this is not a branded lottery. If your society runs a lottery that benefits lots of other good causes (so each good cause the society supports receives a proportion of the proceeds), this is not a branded lottery; it is a single society promoting lotteries for the benefit of multiple beneficiaries.
A draw, in relation to a lottery, is any process by which a prize in the lottery is allocated. [GA2005, s255].
Expenses in a lottery submission refers to the value of costs ‘reasonably incurred’ in organising the lottery, directly related to the operation of the lottery, and paid out of the lottery’s proceeds (ticket sales). Expenses funded by other sources of income (not lottery proceeds) must not be recorded in lottery submissions.
External lottery manager (ELM)
An External Lottery Manager (ELM) is a person that makes arrangements for a lottery on behalf of a society or local authority of which he is not (a) a member, (b) an officer, or (c) employee under a contract of employment. [GA2005, s257].
Largest prize awarded
Largest prize awarded is the highest single value prize won by virtue of a lottery ticket (whether in money, money's worth, or partly the one and partly the other and including any winnings arising from a rollover). Note that it is a legal requirement that a single prize in a lottery must be less than or equal to £25,000, or if more, the prize must not exceed 10% of total proceeds. [GA2005, s99(4)]. This applies to donated prizes, or prizes whereby the cost has been met from external sources or from the society’s non-lottery funds.
A lottery is an arrangement where (a) persons are required to pay in order to participate in the arrangement, (b) in the course of the arrangement one or more prizes are allocated to one or more members of a class, and (c) the prizes are allocated by a process which relies wholly on chance. This is known as a simple lottery. There are also complex lotteries. In a complex lottery, the arrangement is the same as a simple lottery except that the prizes are allocated by a series of processes, and the first of those processes relies wholly on chance. [GA2005, s14].
Lottery date
Lottery date, for raffle style and subscription lottery products, refers to the date of the lottery draw. For scratchcards (including online instant win games) and vending machine lottery products, the lottery date is the last day on which tickets in the lottery were on sale or the expiry date of the tickets.
Lottery submission
Lottery submission is the name of a report licensed lottery operators must make to the Gambling Commission. They provide data about lottery draws. A lottery submission must be made for each lottery that is promoted under a Gambling Commission lottery operating licence issued to a society lottery or local authority.
Lottery type
Lottery types for the purpose of lottery submissions are raffle style, scratchcard, subscription, vending machine.
Next lottery
Next lottery refers to the known/planned date of the first lottery to take place after the one that the current lottery submission is for. This is the date of the next lottery promoted in reliance of a lottery operating licence issued, to a society lottery or local authority, by the Gambling Commission.
Non-remote in relation to gambling means gambling that is not carried out via remote communication. For the purposes of lotteries, this means lottery products that are not sold via remote means. Note this is not about how the lotteries were promoted (e.g. with internet advertising) but how payment is taken. Non-remote includes the sale of lottery tickets by post. For example, by posting direct debit mandates to the operator, cheques or cash. Or face-to-face, for example in a charity shop, door to door or at events. Non-remote does not include payments taken by the internet, telephone, television, radio or using any other kind of electronic or other technology for facilitating remote communication.
Prizes refers to the value of prizes paid out from proceeds (ticket sales) for those tickets that won the lottery draw. This includes prizes of money, money's worth, or partly the one and partly the other. For the purposes of lottery submissions, this excludes prizes allocated to or paid out for a rollover.
Prizes from rollover
Prizes from rollover refers to the total cumulative value of prizes paid out for a rollover from a previous lottery or lotteries.
Lottery proceeds (also referred to as ticket sales) are the total amount paid for tickets in a single lottery before any money is deducted for expenses, prizes, or return to good cause. For the purposes of the Gambling Act 2005, proceeds of a lottery are the aggregate of amounts paid in respect of the purchase of lottery tickets. [GA2005, s254].
Raffle style
Raffle style is a one-off lottery where participants pay to enter that one lottery draw. Examples might include a Christmas or Summer draw or an annual bumper draw. For the purposes of lottery submissions, the term excludes lottery products sold by subscription.
Remote in relation to gambling means gambling in which persons participate by the use of remote communication. This includes using the internet, telephone, television, radio, or any other kind of electronic or other technology for facilitating communication. [GA2005, s4] For the purposes of lotteries, this means lottery products that are sold by any of these means. For example, if payment details are communicated by email, text message or verbally by telephone, this is participation by remote means and the proceeds must be recorded as remote. The definition of remote gambling does not include the sale and delivery of lottery tickets by post or if a participant submits direct debit details for electronic payments by post or face-to-face.
A rollover in relation to a lottery means an arrangement whereby the fact that a prize is not allocated or claimed in one lottery increases the value of prizes available for allocation in another lottery. [GA2005, s256].
Scratchcard is a lottery in which every draw takes place either before, or at the point of, purchase of tickets by participants in the lottery. It is a type of instant win lottery product in which customers buy, or are provided with, a card with different numbers or symbols. Cards can be either physical or virtual (online or in an app). Typically, physical scratchcards will have numbers on the card hidden by a thin layer of coating, which must be scratched off to reveal the numbers. These outcomes are predetermined to win prizes. For the purposes of lottery submissions, the term scratchcard includes physical scratchcards and instant win games sold by remote means, which can be determined by a random number generator. It excludes scratchcards sold by vending machines.
Society refers to a non-commercial organisation [as defined by GA2005, s19], or local authority that promotes a lottery under a non-remote society lottery operating licence or remote (full or ancillary) society lottery licence granted by the Gambling Commission. It excludes external lottery managers, incidental lotteries, customer lotteries, and (for the purposes of lottery submissions), private lotteries and small society lotteries.
Statement of confirmation
A statement made by one of the following confirming the accuracy of a lottery submission: the holder of a personal licence issued under part 6 of the Act; a qualified person as defined in the Gambling Act 2005 (Definition of small-scale operator) Regulations 2006; or except where the licensee is a local authority, the designated person named on the lottery tickets as having responsibility for the promotion of the lottery.
Subscription is a series of lotteries (other than instant lotteries) promoted on behalf of the same non-commercial society or local authority in respect of which participants pay for participation in one or more future lotteries by regular subscription over a fixed or indefinite period.
A ticket refers to a document that must be provided to a person on receipt of payment for entry into a lottery draw. For the purposes of the Gambling Act 2005, a lottery ticket is a document or article that confers, or can be used to prove, membership of a class for the purpose of the allocation of prizes in a lottery. [GA2005, s253].
Ticket cost
Ticket cost is the value of a single entry into a lottery draw that must be paid to the promoter of the lottery before any person is given a ticket (or document) to confirm their entry into the lottery.
Ticket sales
Ticket sales are the total amount paid for tickets in a single lottery before any money is deducted for expenses, prizes, or return to good cause. (Ticket sales are also referred to as lottery proceeds.).
Vending machine
For the purposes of lottery submissions, the term vending machine refers to instant win scratchcards which are sold by lottery ticket vending machines in non-remote settings. Lottery ticket vending machines usually dispense a scratchcard or pull-tab lottery ticket following the insertion of the cost of the ticket into the machine. The machines only dispense a pre-determined ticket (although the result may not be displayed or communicated immediately) - there must be no element of skill or game play required by the purchaser and the machine must not determine the outcome of the lottery or display the result within an interval of less than one hour.
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