The Constitutional Court in Belgium has annulled the 1999 Gambling Act after a lengthy hearing and will now require licensed operators in the country to offer online casino games via one domain and sports betting via another domain. Prior to the annulment, licensed operators had the option of offering both online casino and sports betting services under the same domain.
The debate as to whether licensed operators can offer sports betting and online casino games under the same domain has been going on for years. The Brussels Court of Appeal ruled in 2017 that it was legal for operators to run both sports betting and online casino games under the same domain.
However in 2018, the Constitutional Court ruled different and stated that land based casinos could not offer online gaming services at their same site. Land based casino operators would have to create a separate site for online gaming services. In the same way, online gambling operators would also have to create two sites for sports betting and online games of chance.
This ruling by the Constitutional Court was challenged by the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) and supported by the Council of Ministers who argued that land based casino operators should be allowed to offer online casino games via the same domain name.
The back and forth over the last few years has come to an end with the Constitutional Court shutting down the Council of Ministers and ruling that there must be two different sites for online casino and sports betting.
Operators Will Need To Make The Changes
iGaming and betting operators prefer to host both betting and online casino games under one domain. It makes it easier for their players to get all their gaming and betting needs done under one domain with the same ID and password. They also don’t need to keep track of different accounts and make two separate deposits.
The new ruling will make it mandatory now for operators to split their online casino and betting services. The Belgian Gaming Commission (BGC) cancelled the gaming license of Casinos Austria International (CAI) over this law and as a result, Betway had to shut down its online casino and betting websites.
Betway was using the CAI license to offer both online casino and sports betting services via its dot.be website.