Ireland has Dublin as capital, and the territory has 69 797 km2, five-sixths of the island of Ireland, being the remaining part Northern Ireland, that belongs to the United Kingdom. The population of the country is 4 628 949, information of 2015, and the official languages are Irish and English. It’s one of the oldest members of the European Union, joined in 1973, and has the Euro as currency since January 1999.
Gambling is historically a part of the Irish culture, and both gambling and betting operations are legal in the country. Thinking about Ireland we certainly recall horse and greyhound races, but since the 18th century, that other gambling types are regulated and very popular too.
The popularity in land-based and online casinos goes to the extent of billions of Euros spent by players yearly.
Regulation of gambling in Ireland started in 1956 with the Gaming and Lotteries Act. The purpose of the law, among others, was to make gambling illegal, but some loopholes allowed gaming clubs to appear and play the casino role.
Up to the year 2000 that Ireland didn’t have casinos, only two categories existed until then, betting and lotteries. Just in recent years, big reforms were made to change this situation.
The 1956 law is still the base for the current legislation and cover situations like gambling in carnivals, circuses or other shows, but also gambling activities as we know them. Even this law regulates online gambling, something unlikely to be predicted in 1956. The modernization of this law is, naturally, a necessity to cover the modern days gambling.
When talking about betting the laws are even more ancient, and we have the 1931 betting Act to prove it. Bookmaking is extremely popular in Ireland, and today is the Gaming and Leisure Association of Ireland (GLAI), established in 2005, that regulates it, focusing on the casinos and its regulation.
Ireland is one of the most liberal countries in what concerns online gambling, so internet operations are perfectly legal. The legalization happened in 2003, and the first site was launched in 2004 and was followed by success by other sites.
The gambling licenses are issued by the government to online operators, but in order to evade taxes, some companies are still based in foreign countries. This is possible because betting in another country is legal too in Ireland.
Online gambling didn’t have a specific law until 2012, so the new legislation had the goal to fill the existing gap in the area, as the existing regulation for the area was from 1931. This new legislation makes the existence of a license mandatory in order to accept bets, and also a remote bookmaker’s license for online operators, considering the revenue is superior to €200,000. Those operating without a license face criminal charges.
Despite the government did create the law, it has not been reviewed yet by the parliament, meaning it’s not approved just yet. Plans to increase taxes also exist, but once more they are still under analysis for approval, a process that is ongoing for years now.
Casino list for Irish players
If you are in Ireland and you are looking for a place to gamble safely and with quality, we leave you here some suggestions.
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