How each Canadian province regulates its gambling?
March 9, 2021
Canadian law concerning gambling may be tricky. A federal state allows each province to impose regulations of their own, although federal laws exist. Add to this the general grey area in which gambling activities find themselves, and you’ve got quite a hassle.
We are here to make the situation more transparent. What are the provinces’ stances on the charitable play? What about bookmaking? And the question to end them all: is online gambling okay? The answers to these questions can all be found in our article below.
The iGaming situation in Canada
Operating online casinos within the territory is illegal. However, it is perfectly fine to play at offshore licensed casinos. Offshore casinos are in a legally grey area – the sole exception comes in the Kahnawake license form. Anyhow, the offshore provider should have a license from a reputable authority. To find licensed gambling sites, go to casinobonusca, a website that promotes only regulated brands that have licenses from Malta Gaming Authority, UKGC or the Gibraltar Commissioner.
At the moment, OLG is the only website to receive the approval of Ontario’s gambling commission – and it belongs to the said commission. Operators may opt for this regional license, which covers the Mohawk territories in Ontario. Recent news states that the Ontarian conservative government wants to fully legalize web betting, although this has been in plan as early as 2018. So, who knows?
Remember this: you must be 19 or older to access an Ontarian casino. Each province decides the minimum gambling age.
How does federal law acts regard gambling?
Canada-wide laws favour parlay betting, while placing a single-event bet is currently illegal.
We begin our list with the most populous Canadian province. In Ontario, all operators abide by the Gaming Control Act, first issued in 1992. The Act states that charitable gaming (including bingo and lottery schemes) and land-based casinos are under the law. Single-event sports betting has also been decriminalized.
In Quebec, you can enter a clubhouse as soon as you turn 18. There are, however, some restrictions on your play – sports betting is largely illegal on this territory. Like in Ontario, the commission regulating gambling created an online casino, Espacejeux. Besides it, we recommend you visit offshore websites – on the Quebecois market, Espacejeux has as much of a monopoly as Ontario’s OLG.
This province is more lenient than the former, as it allows horserace betting. For other types of sportsbooks, residents may visit offshore gambling websites. However, you have to wait a bit more before hitting the club – the minimum age for betting activities is 19.
Like in Alberta, players must be at least 19 before engaging in the lottery or other gambling activities. Like in the other provinces, non-profit organizations may promote charitable gaming. While there are not many BC restrictions, the fact stands that you must bet on at least two sporting events. Moreover, the province’s commission created an online casino, much like in Quebec and Ontario.
Small as Nova Scotia is, it has a flourishing gambling scene. The two land-based casinos you may pick are government-owned, and you can enter them when you turn 19. While the province has no website of its own, you can access the offshore brands with ease.
In the second French-speaking province, you can enter the gambling scene as soon as you are 19. The territory is big on charitable gaming, with over 800 non-profits receiving a charitable license. Also, the elderly have a marked preference for bingo and other charity-friendly activities. While New Brunswick has no site, its government plans on implementing one.
The Liquor and Gaming Authority of Manitoba supervises the activities in the province. Like in other regions, you can enter a government-owned gambling website and offshore brands. All bettors must be older than 19 and, in the case of sports betting, there is an extra condition. You cannot wager on more than C$250 in a single day. And of course, you must place bets on at least two events.
Here, Saskatchewan-based online casinos are strictly forbidden. On the other hand, international casinos are approved. The province has a solid gambling culture, with several land-based casinos available – they belong either to Saskatchewan commissions or to the First Nations Trust.
Prince Edward Island
In Canada’s smallest province, you can enter a casino that offers games of chance, games of skill, and sportsbook. You must be 19 to engage in such an activity, and remember, only parlay betting is allowed. The online medium is entirely unregulated, so you should look for an international operator.
Newfoundland and Labrador
Shockingly enough, the province does not allow land-based casinos. The only exceptions to this rule are clubhouses owned by the First Nations. However, those aged 19 or higher may play online with offshore providers. Also, charitable gambling is blooming in the province.
To wrap this up
While Canada allows each province to regulate itself, the Canadian gaming scene is relatively homogenous. We remarked that most regions have higher age restrictions than most countries, and there is extra caution regarding sporting events and playing online.