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New rules and sanctions for gambling tax

16 Aug 2013

The government is putting forward new proposals for rules and sanctions to ensure that remote gambling operators with UK customers will pay UK gambling taxes from next year. This will apply no matter where in the world they are based.

The changes, due to come into force on December 1 2014, will mean that all remote gambling companies will be taxed on their gambling profits from UK customers. This will prevent companies from avoiding UK taxes by basing themselves offshore and will create a level playing field across the industry.

The new rules will be supported by tough enforcement measures, including the creation of new criminal offences. Failure to comply with them could result in prison sentences of up to seven years, unlimited fines, or the loss of a remote gambling operator’s licence to operate.

The move follows last year’s announcement that gambling tax would be based on a ‘place of consumption’, rather than on a ‘place of supply’ basis and are the result of the subsequent consultation exploring how the change should be implemented.

Based on a UK remote gambling market estimated to be worth over £2 billion per year it is hoped that the new rules will bring in approximately £300 million per year in additional tax revenues.

Remote gambling operators with UK customers will be liable to pay either remote gaming duty, general betting duty or pool betting duty (depending on the type of gambling offered), all of which are currently at 15%.

Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Sajid Javid, said:

“It is unacceptable that gambling companies can avoid UK taxes by moving offshore, and the government is taking decisive action to ensure this can no longer happen in the future.

“These reforms will ensure that remote gambling operators who have UK customers make a fair contribution to the public finances.”

Further details can be found on the web site at

Written by Richard Nelson LLP

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