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Belgium – Belgian courts rule on all-encompassing online gambling license

By - 15 November 2017

Licensed online gaming operators in Belgium could be forced to reapply for separate licenses for each online product following a ruling from the Constitutional Court.

The court has ruled that the Belgian Gaming Commission (BGC) has no authority to issue a single gambling license to any online operator that offered more than one type of gambling product via the same URL.

The ruling means for example that a physical casino operator cannot offer online sports betting
The challenge was brought by the Casinobelgium.be domain, who claimed that Belgian land-based licenses don’t allow bricks and mortar operators to offer different types of gambling under one roof, so why should online be different.

The highest legal authority in the country considers that a multiple online offer, as is the case for some physical gaming establishments is illegal. The law prohibits operators of casinos, gaming halls or sports or horse betting, to have different licenses. Thus casinos can only offer casino games on the web.

The court ruled that players have to move from one operator to another, in a real world and that this rule should apply also for the Internet.

The court said: “This does not prohibit the accumulation of several additional licenses of separate classes (A +, B + and F1 +) for the exploitation of games of chance and bets via one and the same domain name and the associated URLs.”

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