Industry Moves: UK Gambling Commission Overhauls Licenses

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A member of Responsible Gambling Week is sitting next to a stall reading a flyer.

Photo credit: Responsible Gambling Week

  • UKGC introduces stricter rules for license holders
  • Better customer protection measures planned
  • The Commission expects more voluntary funds contributed to combating gambling harm

The UK Gambling Commission has published new binding rules for its LCCP agreements to be enforced on October 31, 2019.

UK Gambling Commission Tightens License Standards Again

The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has introduced a number of changes to its current License Conditions and Codes of Practice (LCCP), binding agreements that determine what regulatory norms need to be met for an iGaming operator to be issued with a license.

This is the latest move by the UKGC to introduce better players safety practices, following a call for proposals earlier in 2019, a separate assessment of the use of credit cards for the purposes of gambling and a decision to hold casino staff members to the same standards as operators. With the latest changes, the UKGC will:

  • Raise standards for Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
  • Require a clear line of communication between customers and companies, particularly in the cases where an individual is at a higher risk of developing gambling addiction
  • Improve transparency standards, allowing for better funding and addressing the needs of addictive players who would benefit from prevention and treatment

The Commission has been running multiple consultations in a pursuit of developing a safer gaming environment for all participating members.

As per the new agreement, the UKGC would demand from gaming & betting operators to only work with ADR that have been approved by the Commission, thus raising standards across the board.

UKGC Executive Director Paul Hope had this to say;

These changes have been designed to make gambling fairer and safer for consumers and we expect gambling firms to meet their responsibilities in these areas.”

All of these rules will be enforced on October 31, 2019, but it will not affect the entire market. Gaming machine technical and gambling software licenses will be waived from the new changes – for now.

Interaction Key to Preventing Gambling Harm

Moving forward, the Commission will expect from all parties to interact better with customer, as per the latest requirements. Casino staff will have to put more effort into identifying individuals and successfully gauge whether a player is experiencing gambling harm or developing addiction.

The changes that will bind casinos to higher standards of customer care are also to be enacted come October 31, 2019. Plus, the UKGC expects operators to contribute more to a voluntary fund to boost research and prevention as well as sponsor the treatment of gambling-related conditions.

Meanwhile, the Commission is expected to publish a list of approved bodies to which all gambling operators in the United Kingdom can contribute money.

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