Interactive gambling licensing

Interactive gambling (including internet-based gambling) is regulated under both Australian and Queensland law. Interactive gambling licensing is regulated in Queensland by the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation (OLGR).

Types of online games

There are various types of online games that a person may wish to conduct in Queensland. The licensing requirements for each are outlined below. If you do not believe your proposed game fits within one of the categories below, you may wish to apply for an interactive gambling licence.

Charitable and non-profit online games

Online raffles, art unions (including tipping competitions), bingo, lucky envelopes, Calcutta sweeps and promotional games (trade promotions or competitions) are conducted in Queensland under the Charitable and Non-Profit Gaming Act 1999 (CNPG Act).

Only an eligible association can conduct charitable and non-profit games online, for profit. One of the primary objectives of the CNPG Act is to prevent individuals from obtaining a personal gain from the conduct of games such as raffles.

Eligible associations operating under the provisions of the CNPG Act are permitted to conduct raffles and trade promotions etc. online.

Tipping competitions can also be conducted online so long as all proceeds are returned to the players as prizes and it is conducted by an association or individual as defined in the CNPG Act.

Online lotteries

Online lotteries in Queensland can be conducted by a person operating under a lottery licence and are governed by the Lotteries Act 1997 and associated regulation. Currently, the Golden Casket Lottery Corporation Limited is the sole lotteries licensee in Queensland.

An application for a lottery licence involves significant costs along with the requirement for suitability checks to be undertaken in relation to the companies and persons associated with a gaming applicant/licensee in Queensland. The current application fee to obtain a lottery operator’s licence is $17,860, with a further quarterly licence fee being charged (to be negotiated with government). Tax is also charged on the gross revenue for the game. Currently, the tax rate for lotto-style games is 73.48% of gross revenue, and 55% of gross revenue for instant scratch-its.

As a developer, supplier and/or maintainer of lotteries equipment in Queensland, your equipment and/or software will need also need to be evaluated and approved.

Interactive gambling services such as online casinos, online slot machines and online wagering services that accept ‘in-play’ betting on sports events are prohibited by the Australian Government. ACMA is the government body responsible for the regulation of online industries in Australia. Visit ACMA for more information about interactive gambling.

Online skill-based gaming

If you wish to conduct online skill-based games you should seek independent legal advice in relation to whether the game is able to be conducted under the provisions of the gaming legislation administered in Queensland prior to making an application.

Online wagering

UBET QLD Limited is currently the exclusive licence holder for race and sports wagering in Queensland. New applications cannot be considered until 30 June 2044.

Legislation

Interactive gambling operates under the following legislation:

Major licence holder

There is no current holder of an interactive gambling licence in Queensland.

Applying for an interactive gambling licence

To apply for an interactive gambling licence you must submit the following to OLGR:

  • a completed Form 1: Application for Interactive Gambling Licence
  • adequate information to satisfy the Minister of the applicant’s suitability
  • the suitability of the applicant’s business or executive associates using the probity forms
  • submissions relating to a system of controls for the proposed interactive game
  • a technical submission for the evaluation of any associated regulated interactive gaming equipment
  • payment of all relevant fees.

Once a licence is granted, licensees must submit all proposed interactive games for assessment and approval by the Minister prior to being introduced in Queensland.

Fees

Application, licensing and other fees for an interactive gambling licence include (as at 1 July 2018):

  • Application fee
    - $1,850 if the applicant is a person authorised to conduct a game under the Charitable and Non-Profit Gaming Act 1999 and the application relates to a game under that Act
    - $18,490 if (a) does not apply.
  • Quarterly licence fee - $80,300 per quarter, payable in advance (increases annually on 1 October)
  • Key person licence - $534.80
  • Equipment evaluation fees
  • Tax - In addition, a provider licensed under the Interactive Gaming (Player Protection) Act 1998 (Qld) will be subject to a tax payable to the chief executive for authorised games conducted by the licensed provider.

For the full list of interactive gambling fees, read Schedule 3 of the Interactive Gaming (Player Protection) Regulation 1998 (Qld).

Licences for interactive gambling employees

An interactive gambling key person:

  • occupies or acts in a managerial position or carries out managerial functions in relation to the primary licensee's operations
  • or
  • is in a position to affect or significantly influence the operations conducted under the primary licence
  • or
  • occupies or acts in a position designated in the interactive gambling operator's approved control system as a key.

To find out how to apply for an interactive gambling key person licence, as part of a licence application, contact OLGR.

Resources for interactive gambling licensees

Licensing forms

Contact OLGR for the following forms:

  • Form 1: Application for Interactive Gambling Licence
  • Company probity form
  • Personal probity form.

Code of practice