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German iGaming gamble as new regulation deadline approaches

  • by Stelly in Industry
  • September 24, 2020 | Last updated: October 14, 2020

When it comes to gambling in Germany, online gambling in particular is heavily monitored by the government. While each state, or Bundesland, can decide for themselves concerning exactly what is allowed, only the Schleswig-Holstein encourages online gambling within state borders.

The laws are so strict that your location is tracked and, the minute you are no longer within the borders of Schleswig-Holstein, your access to all online casino sites is revoked

iGaming Regulatory Framework

Germany is currently in a state of transition as each of the 16 states come to terms with the requirements of the Glücksspielneuregulierungstaatsvertrag (GlüneuRStV).

While the country works towards an October 15 implementation deadline, this translation requires that extensive measures are put in place as they grapple with the expected changes to the iGaming market in July 2021.

As Germany looks at offering its citizens access to safe and legal casino games, local online casino operators have the option of applying for a country-wide license.

Unfortunately, due to the number of regulations in Germany the country wants to implement, with each game being required to comply with an extensive set of rules, the future of iGaming, and its effect on German casino operators, looks bleak.

Draconian Rule

1. Know Your Customer

As of 15 October 2020, all licensed casino operators will need to manually verify the identity of each new player. Until the verification process has been completed, the new account holder will be restricted from playing any games of chance.

Manual ID verification usually requires that the account holder sends through a copy of the identity document, bank statement and utility bill and, while this usually takes place before receiving any winnings at other casinos, the requirement for this process to be completed before the player can play casino games will deter many from making use of casino services.

2. Login Notification

Another aspect that is required of casinos offering services to German residents is a notification screen showing the amount lost over the last 30 days.

Players will need to click that they acknowledge this message before they are allowed access to the games. This message cannot simply be closed.

3. Deposit Limits

As of 15 October 2020, Germany requires the following of all online casino registrations or logins of existing players:

  • All players must set a limit on registration/first login after 15th October (for existing players who have not yet set limits). The limit cannot exceed €1,000 per month.
  • Players have can either deposit €500 a day or week up to a max of €1,000 per month. Or make a single deposit of €1,000 per month.
  • Existing users that have a monthly deposit limit of over €1,000 will have their limits reduced to €1,000. Existing users that have a monthly deposit limit of under €1,000, will not be affected.
  • High rollers may apply to have this limit increased to €10,000 however, loss limits will be placed under consideration and players will not be permitted to lose more than 20% of their maximum spend.

Games Affected

While video slot games are the most heavily affected, even sports bettings are subject to rules around the size of wagers that can be made.

Video Slots have the following restrictions during the transition period:

  • €1 max stake per spin
  • Average of 5 seconds per spin
  • No autoplay feature
  • No Jackpots

When it comes to sports betting, operators must limit in-play betting markets and only offer the facility to place bets on the next goalscorer and the final results of the game.

According to the latest changes in German regulations, jackpot games, live casino, and table games will be prohibited from the 15th of October. This will affect almost all of the game providers including Microgaming, Yggdrasil, Play'n GO, NetEnt, Betsoft, IGT, EGT, Quickspin, Evolution, and others.

In Germany, players won't be able to play Mega Moolah, Jackpot Express, Mega Fortune, and other favourite games. Not only is the list of games long but it is also not final and even after the 15th of October, it could grow with even more blocked games.

Over the next 6 months, we may see many more changes that will shape the iGaming market in Germany. Given how much more liberal off-shore casinos are with their bet limits and deposits, only time will tell as to whether these changes will positively impact the online casino market in the country.

Given how freely available off-shore casinos are, and how popular they are amongst German citizens, these draconian factors are unlikely to have a positive effect on the success of licensed, legal, local casinos.

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