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Gambling Commission Warns Of The Risks Involved With Advertising Fantasy Sports Leagues

With the start of the 2017/18 football season looming, the Gambling Commission has issued a warning to organisers of fantasy sports leagues to ensure they are not in breach of gambling laws.

As prize values for fantasy sports leagues are determined by the number of paying entrants, organisers risk having to require a pool betting license. A license is not required when the league is deemed not to be run “in the course of a business”, or where it is run privately, for example between work colleagues.

The area which sparks particular concern is the advertisement of fantasy sports leagues, specifically through Facebook and Twitter.

Promoting a fantasy league through advertisements (which would include social media posts, whether public, private or within groups) could mean that the league is deemed to be operated in the course of a business and therefore would require an operating licence.

Under the GA 2005, operating pool betting without a licence and advertising unlicensed pool betting are both offences. Click here to see the Gambling Commission’s guidance.

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