|Tuesday 7th February 2023
A Comprehensive Overview of Gambling Laws in France
Gambling has long been a part of French culture, but it has also been subject to strict laws and regulations. In this blog post, we will provide a comprehensive overview of gambling laws in France.
History of Gambling Laws in France
Gambling on games of chance has been forbidden for a very long time under French law, and this prohibition is currently expressed in Article L. This article states that all forms of gambling are prohibited unless specifically authorized by the government. In 1987, the minimum gambling age was lowered from 21 to 18, and slots machines became legal after being banned since the 19th century. In 2010, the French government passed a law legalizing online poker and sports betting as well as horse racing betting. This law also allowed for the creation of the Autorite de Regulation des Jeux en Ligne (ARJEL), which regulates online gaming activities in France.
Types of Gambling Allowed in France
Gambling laws in France are quite restrictive and limited. However, several forms of gambling are legal, including lotteries, pari mutuel betting, sports betting and online gaming. These activities are regulated by the Autorité de Régulation des Jeux En Ligne (ARJEL) which is the regulator for all forms of gambling in France. It is important to note that only those 18 years of age or older can take part in any form of gambling activity.
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Current Gambling Regulations in France
Currently, all forms of gambling are regulated and legal in France. Brick-and-mortar operations may host card games, casino games, sportsbooks, and racing betting while online gaming sites must be licensed by ARJEL to offer their services legally within the country’s borders.
The National Gambling Authority (ANJ) is responsible for regulating all forms of gambling in France and ensuring compliance with applicable laws and regulations. The ANJ is headed by Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin who was appointed President by decree of the French President for a six-year term that cannot be revoked.
Penalties for Violating Gambling Laws
Offering a prohibited gambling activity to the public is severely punished under criminal law. Violation of this prohibition can result in fines or imprisonment depending on the severity of the offense. It is important to note that players are not subject to any penalties as long as they are playing at an authorized site or venue that holds an appropriate license from ARJEL or other relevant authorities such as ANJ or La Direction Generale des Jeux et des Etablissements de Jeux (DGE).
Gambling laws in France have evolved over time but remain strict overall due to its Christian-Catholic traditions. All forms of gambling are regulated and legal provided they follow applicable laws and regulations set forth by ARJEL or other relevant authorities such as ANJ or DGE. Offering a prohibited gambling activity to the public can result in severe penalties including fines or imprisonment depending on the severity of the offense committed.