Online Gambling Regulation in the UK vs US

In the whole world, the UK has the most robust regulatory framework as far as online gambling is cornered. It has a complete regulatory framework with entire structures policies and regulations which protect both the gamblers and the gambling firms from the unfortunate happenings in the industry.

However, the United States is the opposite. America has in many instances considered banning gambling altogether. This has made this business to go to the underground world. Due to the robust regulatory regime, the UK has a lot of gamblers who do not shy away from this behavior. It is easy to conclude that the nation has a severe betting problem.

The country has a beneficial regulatory authority by the name of the UK Gambling Commission. The watchdog imposes harsh fines and penalties to firms which do not follow the various regulations enacted to regulate gambling. In Britain, perhaps the high number of gamblers come from universities even though the whole UK population seems to suffer from the problem of gambling.

However, getting the real statistics in the US is a bit challenging due to lack of a proper legal framework. The gaming market is not characterized by a lot of fines and penalties due to the minimal regulation.

While the US gambling market remains highly unregulated, in the UK, it is regulated under the Gambling Act 2005. The Act sets the various rules and regulations concerning remote gambling, non-commercial gambling, and the UK National Lottery among other gambling activities. Under the law, the UK Gambling Commission was established to audit the gaming companies and enforce regulations.

As such, the body has powers to impose penalties running into millions of pounds. Still, while the US has a largely unregulated online gaming industry, the reverse is true in the UK. In the year 2014, the sector received further regulations in a bid to net betting firms which had relocated to Gibraltar and Malta with the aim of avoiding taxes. The added regulations imposed a 15% point-of-consumption tax on all remote gambling activities. As such, any gambler dealing with UK gambling firms has to pay this tax to the UK government.

The overall effect of this kind of regulation is the growth of the gambling industry. Currently, the industry provides billions of pounds in form of government revenues accounting for close to 0.5% of the Gross Domestic Product. That is not all; the industry is a significant employer in the UK providing jobs to more than 100,000 UK citizens.

On the other side, while the UK government saw the potential of gambling and enacted measures to regulate it, the US did exactly the opposite. The US Congress started efforts to shut down the industry since the year 2006.

The legislative arm of the government was giving in to pressure from conservative groups which saw gambling as a moral and economic issue in the nation. This has made the industry to thrive in the black market hence denying the government the much-needed revenues.

Very few states have measures to regulate this industry thus there are no accurate statistics on the potential of gambling.

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