Gambling Settings in Ireland: Is It Legal or Not?

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The Irish love to gamble in their free time. They enjoy both land based and online casinos even though this country is mainly known for horse and greyhound races when it comes to gambling. These two activities have been regulated for around 300 years by different statutes and laws. Gambling activities were not controlled until 1956 when the Gaming and Lotteries Act was issued to tighten this industry. Nowadays, billions of Euros per year come out of gambling in all its forms, be it online or offline.

Lotteries and Bingo

Playing the lottery is quite popular in this country although the lottery ticket prices are among the highest in Europe. Both Bingo and lottery are legal and enjoy the support of the state. There is actually a National Lottery available for Irish citizens.

Casinos are outlawed in Ireland

According to the Gaming and Lotteries Act of 1956, casinos are illegal in Ireland. However, the law has certain loopholes for investors to discover and go around them to establish private casino clubs. They are extremely popular in Ireland and are basically private clubs that offer casino-like facilities.

You have to be at least 18 years old to be a member of such a club and you also need to provide proof of residence. These are not the only regulations regarding these facilities. If you want to know more about the

Earn money at casinos

 membership conditions, you can read about them on the website of the Gaming and Leisure Association of Ireland.

The purpose of these rules is to protect consumers, namely the players. They ensure that minors and other vulnerable parties are protected from the dangers of gambling hustles. Money laundering is an issue and the government tries to reduce it. They also want to reduce tax evasion in the gambling industry.

Online casinos in Ireland

The industry of online casinos becomes more and more popular although this didn’t happen until recently. Online betting at companies that are not based in Ireland was illegal until 2001 when the Horses and Greyhound Act allowed it. Internet gambling in general was legalized in 2003 and the first online bookmaking site emerged one year later. Most gambling wins are not subject to taxes unless we are talking about sports beting in which case 2% of the winnings go to the state.

Today, Ireland is one of the most liberal countries regarding regulations of online casinos. Taking all these into account, I think it is safe to say that gambling in general and online casinos in particular are legal in Ireland. So, you are free to go to sites like to try your luck at the many games they provide.

Take a look at what deposits are necessary to sign up and assess whether that is a risk you can afford to take. The trick to gambling is to consider from that start that any bet you make is a loss. Can you live without that money? If the answer is yes, go on and make the bet. Otherwise, you might want to review your decision.



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Donagh is the editor of Irish Left Review. Contact Donagh through email: