NSW To Get Tougher After Gambling Operators Evade Laws

May 14, 2019 by Natalie Whitehead

Australians have a reputation for spending huge amounts of cash at the gambling tables. The government in recent times has taken steps to impose more restrictions on both online gambling and live casino operators in an effort to curb gambling expansion and specifically to control the increase in gambling addiction.

Two of the major changes imposed by state gambling watchdogs were to impose restrictions on gambling advertisements and also to instruct gambling operators to stop using the no deposit bonus or free bonus to encourage new players to sign-up. A lot of online casinos sites offer players free cash or free spins to get them to create an account and check out their online gaming offering.

New South Wales (NSW) was one of the states that had these restrictions in place but found that gaming operators were resorting to different measures to side step these regulations. Currently, NSW only allows racing websites to offer special bonuses but casino operators continue to lure customers in by using other websites to promote special discounts and coupons.

The NSW gaming regulator is aware of such breaches and has pulled up a number of popular operators in recent times. Some of the operators that have been slapped with non-compliance reports include Tabcorp, Ladbrokes, bet365, PointsBet and Sportsbet from Paddy Power. The state gaming regulator is registering an average of two non-compliance reports per month and is issuing non-compliance fines.

Small Fines Not A Major Deterrent

The NSW gaming regulator has collected close to $92,000 in combined fines from June 2018 to date. That’s not a very big amount when you look at the operators who have been found to be non-compliant. The amount collected in fines is peanuts for these operators and not a major deterrent for them to toe the line of compliance.

Charles Livingston, professor at Monash University has urged the NSW gaming regulator to take more action and impose heavier fines. Livingston said the current fines were nothing but a slap on the wrist for these major gaming operators who are happy to shell out these small amounts and consider it a cost of doing business.

Liquor and Gaming NSW has decided to take this advice and now plans to increase the fine for each non-compliance incident to up to $38,000 which is 10 times more than the current fine.