April 6, 2023 3 min read


Online Slots Stake Limits Upcoming for Operators in the UK

The focus of the upcoming White Paper will be to protect problem gamblers and players at risk

The UK government will introduce stake limits of between £2 ($2.49) and £15 ($18.68) for online slot games according to leaked information about the upcoming White Paper.

Protection with Minimal Disruption

Players under the age of 25 will not be able to stake more than £2 ($2.49) while playing online slots and operators will be subjected to a new legal tax to fund treatment for problem gamblers, claimed the report in The Sun based on leaked cabinet documents.

Laying out the proposals to her colleagues, recently appointed Secretary of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) Lucy Frazer outlined that the changes aim “to protect people who are at risk of addiction, catastrophic loss and harm, with minimal disruption to the majority.”

There are 300,000 problem gamblers and 1.8 million gamblers at risk of experiencing gambling harm in the UK and the measure is aimed at protecting them but the stake limits are likely to ire gambling industry stakeholders who will be concerned that their profits will decrease.

Frazer also told the ministers that there would be a new tax on operator profits to help fund problem gambling treatment and new operator obligations such as doing credit checks on players deemed at risk of spiraling into debt and monitoring for signs that gambling losses are becoming unaffordable for a player.

“I am confident that the societal benefits in harm reduction outweigh the projected costs to industry, and that much of the drop in online revenue will be the foregone income from people gambling unaffordably,” she reportedly told the cabinet.

New Controls for Free Bet Bonus Offers

As part of the efforts to make online gambling safer and combat gambling addiction, games will have their riskier features limited and operators will face new controls on their free bet bonus offers to ensure people are not being “targeted in harmful ways.”

Data of people representing “high risk” will be shared among the industry to facilitate operators to stop them from accumulating huge losses and a new legal body will be created to mediate complaints against operators. Frazer also vowed to address “remaining gaps” allowing people under 18 to gamble via cash fruit machines and scratch cards.

Other important changes will be the removal of all gambling firm logos from the front of players’ shirts across English Premier League (EPL) clubs, higher taxes for horserace betting to ensure proper funding for the sport and access to sports betting for land-based casinos, as well as the ability to open credit lines for high-rollers, and new powers for the Gambling Commission to crack down on the black market.

Frazer said the White Paper would be published after the Easter break and the plan involves most of the changes to be implemented without the need to create a new law.

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