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Consolidation of operator complaints and disputes data October 2019 – September 2020

The purpose of this report is to look at all operator complaints and disputes received by the Gambling Commission and analyse key issues, themes and trends

Appendix 2 - Data source description

Regulatory Returns

As part of the Licence conditions and codes of practice (LCCP) operators are required to provide information on the range of gambling activities provided by the licensee. The codes of practice require operators to log complaints made about any aspect of the conduct of the licensed activities, other than those that are resolved at the first stage of the operator’s complaints resolution procedure. The number of complaints logged within the reporting period needs to be recorded irrespective of the outcome.

Disputes are that subset of complaints which concern the outcome of the customer’s gambling transaction. They do not include wider concerns that may relate to the conduct of the gambling operation. As disputes are a subset of complaints, the number of disputes reported on the regulatory return will also be included in the count of complaints on the regulatory return. There is a separate requirement in the code of practice in the LCCP concerning those disputes that were referred to an independent party for resolution.

Operators must also report to us the total number of disputes that are escalated to an ADR entity.

Please note that the Gambling Commission recently consulted on changes to the regulatory returns that would require licensees to report complaints in a different way. Instead of providing a total, there will be a requirement to report against different complaint categories.

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

Licensees are required to use an ADR provider that appears on our approved list. ADR providers must comply with the ADR regulations and meet our additional standards. Licensees must meet the standards in the LCCP and our associated guidance when handling complaints.

There are 8 Gambling Commission approved ADR providers, this report focuses on the largest two (in terms of gambling related disputes ), which are IBAS and eCOGRA and are used by over 90% of gambling operators . A consumer must contact the betting operator first with any complaint, the operator then has 8 weeks to resolve the issue before it can be escalated to an ADR.


Resolver is a free, independent tool for consumers. It provides information about the issue the consumer wants to complain about, and support to help the consumer write emails and letters of complaint. Resolver is not an intermediary and doesn’t act on the consumer’s behalf – but it does help the consumer to make their complaint in a structured way, and to make informed choices about what actions to take.

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Appendix 1 - consolidation of operator complaints and disputes data October 2019 – September 2020
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Appendix 3
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