Consultation on society lottery reform opened by Gambling Commission

Following a consultation carried out in 2018, in July 2019 the Government announced its intention to increase:

  • per draw limits for lottery proceeds from society lotteries from £4 million to £5 million, and
  • the annual aggregate proceeds limit from £10 million to £50 million.

The Gambling Commission is required by the Gambling Act 2005 to attach conditions to lottery operating licences for the purposes of achieving the requirements that Act and this means that the current limits, reflected in licence conditions attached to all society lottery operating licences, will need amending to reflect the Government’s intended changes to the limits.

Therefore, the Gambling Commission has now opened a consultation on the changes to the licence conditions and codes of practice ("LCCP") required to reflect the changes to the limits.

It is also, however, in light of comments made during the broader review of society lottery regulations about transparency to consumers, seeking views on strengthening parts of the social responsibility code to allow lottery consumers to make better informed decisions about whether to gamble.

It is proposed that this would involve the introduction of new social responsibility code 4.3.3 into the LCCP, requiring operators both to ensure consumers have the information necessary to make an informed choice, and to take account of guidance provided by the Commission on how they might do this.

The proposed new guidance contained in the consultation document covers the information to be provided to consumers on prizes and the likelihood of winning a prize, as well as how the proceeds of the lottery will be used. It also seeks to address how such information should be made available to consumers, taking into account the variety of ways in which a lottery can be promoted and the media through which gambling can be conducted.

The consultation is open until 12 March 2020, and should be of interest to licensees and prospective licensees, charities and organisations concerned with gambling and social responsibility; and organisations with an interest in lotteries.

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