This is part 2 of the Betwiser Sports Betting Beginners Guide. On this page, you’ll learn the legality of online sports betting in your country, how to discover if your country accepts online sports betting and the requirements that governments imposed in order to bet online
First of all, the legality of online sports betting all depends on where in the world you live. Some governments have placed a complete ban on this type of activity altogether, while others have it strongly regulated (I think this is a good thing).
In the circumstances of the latter, there are requirements you’ll need to pass in order to bet online. If your situation is in the former, then I’m afraid things aren’t all rosy for you.
All of the reputable online betting agencies will have strict rules set in place that prevent local government laws to be broken. Therefore if you try to register to one of these agencies from one of the countries that do not allow you to, the betting agency will and should reject you.
Countries that have banned online sports betting
If the place you call home is any of the following countries listed below, then it saddens me to tell you that online sports betting is illegal in your country.
- China & Hong Kong
- USA (with the exception of the State of Nevada)
The countries listed above have on-going debates about legalising online sports betting. This is very noticeable in the USA where members of congress have been disputing this issue recently (2010).
Should the USA legalise this activity past the boundaries of Nevada (and a few other States) to the rest of the United States, there will be a significant increase of punters to the industry due to Americans interest in sports betting.
Hey “My Country”, why do you ban sports betting?
Countries that ban online sports betting do so for a number of different reasons. Firstly they’re trying to shield their people, and especially their youth from being exposed to this form of gambling.
Sports betting can become a dangerous thing if done in excess and with an addictive approach. The same can be said about alcohol and many other things in our society.
The trick with the two is discipline and an understanding of the consequences of doing either of the two things in excess.
Later on in this guide I’ll talk about the dangers of becoming addicted to online sports betting and steps that you can take to prevent this from happening.
The second reason why some governments ban online sports betting is because of money laundering.
It’s mostly an unsupervised electronic transfer of money and therefore governments are cautious that criminals could exploit it, even though transactions are usually done via credit card that is traceable.
Online sports betting agencies are well aware of the counties that ban this activity. These agencies are big businesses usually listed on stock exchange markets. Most are reputable and will not take part in any illegal activities.
What Country can I bet from?
Anywhere else should be ok – although the countries that accept online sports betting heavily regulate it. They have certain requirements that must be met in order for a person to bet online – which I’ll get into below.
Countries require sports betting agencies to have a betting licence and they often have independent audit companies coming in to check that their businesses are run ethically.
Not all betting agencies have licences so it’s important to only sign up to those on the recommended list (Feel free to jump over to this section using the link, but I’d advise that you keep going with this guide step by step).
Or in other words, do not sign up with a sports betting agency, whether it be a bookmaker or a betting exchange if they do not have a betting licence.
Laws are always changing, so a country that had previously banned online sports betting might not anymore.
The best way to find out if your country accepts you making an account is to try and create one from our recommended online sports betting agencies that we’ll list a little later on in the guide.
What type of requirements do I need?
There are certain requirements set on people in order to bet online. The first one is that the punter needs to be over the age of 18.
Some agencies require you to show proof of age when signing up. They do this because there are some hefty fines if they allow people under 18 to place bets.
The second is that you’ll need to be in the country that allows betting in order to log into your account and place bets. Obviously already discussed above.
There’s been a case when someone in Australia created an account with a reputable betting agency and then flew over to America to a state that online sports’ betting is illegal. He had logged into his account and placed a few bets.
This type of activity got him and the betting agency into trouble… No this “someone” was not me. It was “someone else”. I of course do not recommend you do anything like this.
Now come on, if you live in Australia, there’s absolutely no reason to ever travel to the United States of America.
- Part 3 – What are the Sports You can Bet on