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Gaming licenses at online casinos

New Online Casino Canada | Gaming licenses at online casinos

Every player has surely heard about casino licenses. All legal online casinos must have a gaming license issued by the gaming authority in order for the online casino to operate. Also in our articles you will often find talk about gaming licenses, especially the license of the MGA or Malta Gaming Authority compared to the gaming license of Curacao. Casino licenses are an essential thing when choosing a casino, and next we will get to know the different licenses and their operation.

Knowing the licenses is important for the player, but a superficial knowledge will go a long way. You should know the license mainly for security reasons, but also because playing with certain licenses is not tax-free. Therefore, the license should be known in advance, so that you don’t realize later after dozens of withdrawals that you should pay taxes on the winnings. This applied for few countries, whatsoever in Canada online gambling winnings are not extent of taxation. 

Security at online casinos is top notch these days, mainly for new casinos in Canada, and even countries that previously had difficulty maintaining the requirements of their own licenses have stepped up and earned the trust of their players. You know a casino is reliable if it has been granted an ETA License.

A game license is a license that is required from every legally functioning online casino. Many countries have their own gaming authority that grants gaming licenses to different casinos. Licenses from different countries pursue the same main goal, safe gaming, but the differences between countries are massive. As a quick example, we can consider Sweden, where SGA operates, players cannot be given any kind of casino bonuses after the welcome offer. The most critical differences between gaming licenses are related to the security of the gaming venue and the taxation of winnings.

License authorities set various rules and conditions that a casino must follow in order to obtain and maintain a license. EU Area licenses or ETA Licenses are always a safe option for the player, as these licenses are known to be the most reliable and are in the player’s interests.

MGA – Malta license

The most well-known and common license MGA is used in almost all casinos known to Canadians. The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), which has issued Maltese gaming licenses since 2004, maintains and supervises all gambling activities based in Malta.

The Maltese license is the best known in the industry for many reasons. It is considered to be the safest license and it is the most used license of all.. The control of the Maltese gaming authorities is strict, the requirements for obtaining a license are strict and an online casino does not get a license simply by asking for it. The authority conducts an extensive investigation into the casino’s operations and then issues a decision on approval. For example, preventing money laundering is one of the biggest factors, in addition to other things related to the economy.

Online casinos operating with an MGA license also have strict requirements for responsible gaming. Licensed casinos cannot rule out responsible gambling, but tools such as deposit and loss limits and the possibility to freeze or close your account are mandatory according to the MGA license.

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Curacao License

Curacao’s Gaming License is clearly the most well-known and successful of the licenses outside the ETA region. Curacao eGaming has been granting this license since 1996. The Curacao license is a well-known and popular license among casinos, but it does not maintain the same reputation as the MGA license.

The Curacao license is not as demanding and does not require as extensive research as, for example, the Maltese or Estonian license. Among players, the Curacao license has a bad reputation due to bad experiences, although this is no longer true with the modern competition in the industry. This is certainly also influenced by the fact that responsible gambling with the Curacao license is not as closely monitored as with the MGA.

curacao ogaming

UKGC – Great Britain License

UK gambling licenses are granted by the UK Gambling Commission, which has long been one of the most respected gambling authorities in the industry. Like the MGA, the UKGC requires an extensive investigation before a casino is granted a license, including anti-money laundering measures and financial criteria that the casino must meet. If a casino operates in Great Britain, it must always have a UKGC license, but several casinos operate from Malta, maintaining the requirements of both licenses.

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Estonian License

The Estonian license is fairly new, Estonia has been issuing licenses since 2010. The Estonian Gaming License is safe and known to be strict with its licenses. Casinos that apply for a license have to go through an extensive investigation, just like casinos operating with MGA and UKGC licenses. At a casino with an Estonian gaming license, winnings are also tax-free, and the player is certainly at a casino operating with a reliable license.

estonia casino license

Online casinos without a license

The best licenses for Canadian players are clearly the Maltese, Great Britain or Estonian gaming license. If you come across a casino that operates completely without a gaming license, we recommend that you completely avoid visiting the site. Some of the pages are straight up scam sites, and without a license there are never any guarantees for the player about their operation. By depositing money on this page, unfortunately you may never see those funds.

Gaming authorities monitor the activities of casinos and protect players for a reason, and even if you find an unlicensed casino with great-sounding offers or really loose terms, you should avoid them and prefer to play at a casino with an official license issued in the EEA region.

Other ETA Licenses

Some countries use their own licenses, that is, the country has its own gaming authority that regulates and supervises gambling activities. These countries include, for example, Spain, Sweden, Denmark and Ontario – Canada.

The licenses of the countries in question are all significantly stricter than MGA’s and some of the online casinos do not offer their services to these countries directly for this reason. License authorities themselves set the conditions for playing, and can significantly complicate the casino’s operation if the casino wants to offer games to the country in question.

Swedish Game License SGA

Sweden’s Gaming License entered into force at the beginning of 2019. Today, all casinos that offer games in Sweden have to apply for a Swedish license if they want to receive Swedish customers. The change was unfortunate for the players, playing has been severely restricted, and the players’ advantage in the form of bonuses, for example, has been reduced so much that the Swedes receive almost no bonuses at all.

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Danish Gaming License DGA

The Danish gambling license is issued by DGA, the Danish Gambling Authority. The casino is not allowed to offer its games to Danes without this license. The license is known to be very strict, and if the casino wants to offer games in Denmark, it must prepare to meet the very demanding license requirements that the country’s authority has set for gaming.

Frequently asked Questions

What is a reliable license for a Canadian?

Licenses that are reliable for Canadians are MGA, i.e. the Maltese license, and the Estonian license, as well the most recent Ontario license for Ontario players. We always recommend choosing a casino with these licenses.

What does the gaming authority control?

The gaming license granting authority supervises the operation of the online casinos it licenses in terms of the casino’s business, and for example, in terms of how the casino takes care of the safety and privacy of its players. The authority also monitors whether the casino operates in accordance with all regulations, e.g. the conditions of responsible gaming.

New Online Casino Canada | Gaming licenses at online casinos

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