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Licensed Gaming Venue Laws and Licensing in Australia

Licenced gaming venues

Licensed gaming venues in Australia including hotels and clubs are required to hold a gaming venue licence to operate. In addition, they are required to hold an entitlement or permit/licence to operate each gaming machine within the licensed premises. The only exception to this is in relation to a casino operator licence, permitting the licensee to operate gaming machines within the casino premises. Each State and Territory regulator set caps on the number of gaming machine entitlements that are available and how they are allocated across different types of venues and geographies e.g. metropolitan and regional areas.

Gaming machines in Australia are colloquially referred to as “poker machines” or “pokies” as compared to the US and other jurisdictions where they are referred to as “slots”. There are often strict local government planning requirements which must be met in relation to gaming machines. The number of gaming machines which such venues may be permitted to operate is limited based on the “entitlement” or permit/Licence to operate those gaming machines. Various states (including New South Wales and Victoria) have implemented harm minimisation measures to cap the number of gaming machine entitlements/permits/licences on issue in certain lower socio-economic areas.

Responsible Gaming compliance training for Licensed Gaming Venues

Consumer protection and responsible gaming are key areas of importance to the gambling industry and both ensure that gaming remains a safe and enjoyable experience for those that choose to gamble. While consumers are the focus of both consumer protection and responsible gaming, each remain essential frameworks for all gaming venues and must ensure they take responsibility to keep both their customers and the industry safe.

There have been cases in the past where venues have acted either irresponsibly or inappropriately and those actions have led to very damaging outcomes for all involved. Learning from these failings, the industry has worked closely with both regulators and responsible gambling organisations in an effort to reduce the harm caused by, and the potential for, problem gaming.

In order to raise awareness of consumer protection and responsible gaming within your organisation, all staff should be sufficiently trained and informed of relevant standards and requirements to protect both your customers and venue. Through the Senet Compliance Academy we provide a full spectrum of gaming compliance training courses to ensure that all staff and the venue is complying with its legal and regulatory obligations.

Lawyers and solicitors and regulatory experts advising Licensed Gaming Venues in Australia

Senet are Licensed Gaming Venue legal and regulatory experts in Australia and we advise venues in relation to all venue-related issues including licensing, entitlements, outsourced arrangements under which gaming machines are leased to those operators as a managed service, change in ownership, Responsible Gaming and AML/CTF policies and procedures.

Senet Assure and Senet Assure Premium provide accreditation for licensed gaming venues by distinguishes industry leaders and demonstrating commitment to meeting and exceeding regulatory obligations, cultivating compliance orientation, and helps shield your venue against financial crime and gambling related harm.

Our range of legal and regulatory advisory services for Licensed Gaming Venues

We assist licensed gaming venues including single venues through to established groups with multiple venues. Our clients rely on us to help them make the right decisions in Australia’s complex and challenging gambling legal, regulatory and political environment and we frequently advise on:

  • Applications for new gambling-related licenses and approvals, renewals and variations.
  • Dealings with gambling regulators, including new or varied product offerings
  • Responsible Gaming and Anti-Money Laundering compliance training
  • Loyalty programs
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Company formation and incorporation
  • Investigations including in relation to potential breaches and formal and informal regulatory investigations by local gambling authorities, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), Australian Transactions Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC), law enforcement and other statutory bodies

Our gaming lawyers in Australia are ranked by Chambers & Partners Global and Asia Pacific

Our gaming lawyers are ranked in Chambers & Partners Global and Asia Pacific as leading experts in gambling law and regulation in Australia, Senet is the gambling industry’s leading legal, advisory and regulatory compliance firm and we advise all sectors in the gambling industry including racing, bookmakers, casinos, government and regulators, gaming manufacturers, lotteries and provide legal, advisory and gambling compliance training services.