A Guide To UK Gambling Regulations

Regulators work hard to keep gambling safe for players throughout Europe. There is a great deal of regulation that takes place and currently 11 different regulating bodies that could be affecting how you play games and what games are available to you.

What The Regulators Do

It's the duty of the regulators to ensure that casinos are safe to play at and they are offering fair odds to players. To do this they issue licences to all the different casino operators, and require a set of steps to maintain those licences. Each casino is responsible for having its real number generator system, the device that keeps all games fair, regularly checked and to make the details of these checks available to the regulator.

An Overview Of The Different Regulators

Now that you know what their job is, here is a quick overview of each of the different regulators that you might see listed at the bottom of an online casino you're interested in playing. Each one does things a bit differently, but they are all trying to accomplish the same thing.


Alderney is a well-respected regulator known for charging a 0% tax and imposing no restrictions on the gambling market. For that reason it's a common place for casinos to be set up.


France is known for being one of the worst countries to run a casino in. It taxes the casinos heavily and makes it harder for the operators to offer gameplay the players within the country. This has kept most casinos out of France.


Gibraltar is a very common regulating body that you'll hear about from a variety of casinos. That's because this regulator has favourable tax restrictions and carefully watches over casinos without making it too hard to get a licence initially. They charge a total of 1% of the casino's annual turnover each year, but tax is capped at £425,000 every year.

Isle Of Man

The Isle of Man is a Tier 1 jurisdiction that charges relatively low taxes to casinos operating within its borders. The Isle of Man is known for being very strict about rules concerning money laundering and other serious crimes. It's a white listed regulator and is much respected for keeping casinos safe to play at.


Italy is another well-respected regulator within the European Union. It has some confusing tax laws and the amount a casino is taxed depends on the type of casino it is and what games are offered. Bingo is taxed heavily at 11.5%, cash games heavier still at 20%, but some games like sports betting are taxed much less at just 3.5%, which is likely why there are so many Italian Sports Betting casinos.


At first glance Malta seems like an extremely expensive place to run a casino. Sure the country does an excellent job at keeping tabs on its casinos but they have to pay a 35% tax rate, one of the highest around. Fortunately for foreign casino operators a series of rebates can drop that rate all the way down to 5% if used properly.

United Kingdom

The United Kingdom is the hub of gambling for many casinos and is one of the best places to be licensed because of all the players that respect the licence. Fees for casinos range between 24% and 15%. Having this simple licence can really help get an online casino noticed though.


Spain is another carefully regulated country that regulates many of the casinos that UK players will experience. The taxes in Spain are in the mid-range between 20% and 30% and it is committed to carefully looking over any casinos operating in the area. A single licence is good for between one to five years and only casinos that follow all the rules will be able to continue operating with the Spain licence.

States Of Jersey

The States of Jersey is one of the most attractive places to set up a casino because after paying £5,000 for the 3 year licence the organisation doesn't have to pay any taxes on earnings at all. That makes it incredibly affordable to run a casino out of this little known island, and every casino is monitored closely and must report back annually to keep the licence.