Online poker finally becomes legal in the Netherlands

Warren | United Kingdom | Monday November 1 2021, 13:09 | 0 Comments

From October 1st, 2021, the Remote Gambling Act (KOA) applies in the Netherlands. This allows gambling operators to offer online gambling legally, while until then it was officially prohibited. The law also has consequences for physical arcade halls and casinos.

What is changing and what conditions must operators meet to offer online gambling in the Netherlands with the new Remote Gambling Act?

The new law supplements and amends the current Dutch law on games of chance. Operators that want to offer a game of chance online, such as bingo, online poker, casino games and sports betting, could apply for a license from the Gaming Authority (KSA) since April 1st, 2021.

In addition to making online gambling legal, new rules also apply to physical and existing arcade halls and casinos. For example, for both physical and online gambling, there will be a strict Know Your Customer requirement. Age verification and a player's exclusion register containing persons who are not allowed to gamble online are required during the registration process.

Dutch license requirements

The following applies for operators that have entered the application procedure for offering online games of chance in the Netherlands, and to obtain a license from the KSA. The procedure opened April 1st, 2021, and took a total of 6 months before the first ten operators received their licenses:

  1. A healthy business. There may be no (imminent) bankruptcy, liquidation, suspension of payments or attachments.
  2. Associations and foundations are not eligible for a permit.
  3. Operators may not have been active as a gambling provider yet.
  4. Player funds must be handled responsibly. For example: escrow accounts, bank guarantees, or other facilities can be used.
  5. Operators must indicate how internal supervision is arranged within their company and what knowledge and powers supervisory company officials have. They also must indicate how the separation between the company’s board and the supervisors is arranged, and how the independence of the officials is guaranteed.
  6. Operators are obligated to join the CRUKS register (Central Register Exclusion of Chance Games). This is a national system on which players are listed who are not allowed to gamble for at least 6 months because they have gambling problems.
  7. Anti money laundering - and prevention of terrorist financing policies must be drawn up.
  8. A sum of €48.000 must be paid to the KSA and is non-refundable if the application gets rejected.

Dutch license requirements

According to the KSA it is possible to get at least eight out of ten online players to legal providers in the Netherlands with the new Remote Gambling Act.

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