Online casinos in Austria operate with licenses issued by BMF. Austria's international gambling establishments on the Internet run based on international permits.
Online casinos in Austria
Online casino games (roulette, poker, slot machines, bingo) are regulated by the Bundesministerium für Finanzen (Austrian Ministry of Finance, BMF) and Finanzamt Österreich (Austrian Tax Office) until July 1, 2020. Virtual sports bets are permitted and controlled by government regulations of nine Austrian federal states (Bundesländer). Lotteries are a state monopoly.
Legal regulations for online casinos in Austria
|Online casino license||Issued by Glücksspielgesetz (Federal Law on Gambling) and E-Commerce Gesetz (Law on Electronic Commerce)|
|Main regulator||Bundesministerium für Finanzen (Ministry of Finance of Austria), Finanzamt Österreich (Internal Revenue Service of Austria), |
Bundesländer (federal government)
|Tax for operators|| |
From gross income:
|Winning tax for players||No|
|Sanctions for operators||Provided by the Criminal Code and the Code of AP|
|Payment systems||Visa, MasterCard, PayPal|
Regulation and Licensing
Regulations that govern the activities of online casinos, lotteries, sports betting and horse racing:
- Allgemeines Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch (Austrian Civil Code).
- E-Commerce Gesetz (Law on Electronic Commerce).
- Bundesgesetz gegen den unlauteren Wettbewerb (Unfair Competition Act, UWG).
- Glücksspielgesetz (Federal Law on Gambling, GSpG).
- Finanzmarkt-Geldwäschegesetz (Anti-Money Laundering Act, FM-GWG).
The UWG contains a blacklist of casino Austria and games prohibited in the country. According to Austrian law, adding an operator to a stop list is not a punishment for illegal gambling.
Offering online entertainment without an Austrian license is prohibited.
Online casino gambling mentioned in Section 12 of GSpG: Österreichische Lotterien GmbH is the «electronic lotteries» monopoly.
License for virtual machines, card games issued by BMF. Online sports bets are licensed separately in each county if entertainment offered in the same province.
Poker in the country is considered a gamble (1 section of GSpG). Its success does not depend on the skill or skill of the player. An integral part of poker is cash contributions and rewards.
Sports betting in Austria is permitted. Their regulation depends on the state. In 9 districts, various regulatory authorities and local laws.
- on sports bets — 2%;
- online games — 40% of gross income;
- lotteries — 2–27.5% depending on the size of bets.
The payment of VAT by operators of online casinos in Austria does not provide.
By the provisions on combating money laundering, virtual gambling providers require to identify visitors (electronic passports, driver's licenses). All suspicious activity should report to the financial intelligence unit. Licensees must have an anti-money laundering officer.
Technical requirements for virtual slot machines:
- installation of a warning and protection system for user data;
- regulation of the minimum and maximum duration of games;
- determination of payout ratios;
- confirmation of technical requirements by an expert;
- connecting machines to the Federal Computing Center (Bundesrechenzentrum);
- availability of serial numbers at betting terminals, which the operator provides to the authorities;
- saving data on bets made in the «electronic book».
The main legal and technical requirements set out in GSpG. Under Section 21, the licensee must be a corporation with headquarters in the EU or EEA. The minimum share capital is 22 million euros. The maximum permit period is 15 years.
Licensing criteria specified in sections 14 and 21 of GSpG. The registration fee for obtaining a permit is from 10,000 to 100,000 euros.
Online casino operators are responsible for violating GSpG. The chairpersons, founders of companies illegally operating in Austria, are subject to sanctions by section 168.
Participation in illegal gambling in the online casino Austria is punishable under section 168 GSpG, an administrative fine.
Austrian gambling legislation adapted to EU standards. Items about Engelmann, Dickinger, and Ömer, HIT and HIT Larix, Pfleger, Admiral Casinos and Online Games referred to CJEU (European Court of Justice).
CJEU concluded that the Austrian monopoly does not comply with EU standards. The Austrian Constitutional Court (Verfassungsgerichtshof) rejected the decision of the Supreme Court. But GSpG is actively reforming: requirements introduced for transparent licensing procedures and changes to clauses on monopoly.
Since July 1, 2020, the regulatory authority issuing licenses for virtual gambling establishments has become Finanzamt Österreich (Internal Revenue Service). Amendment adopted to comply with the 4th EU Directive.
Technical support contacts for players, gambling addiction clinics
Paragraph 14a of the Law on Unfair Competition states that each virtual service provider must process the names and addresses of users. It discloses information at the written request of the authorities.
Any person who unlawfully acquires uses or discloses trade secrets is liable under Austrian law. Losses compensated by Section 16 of the Law on Unfair Competition. The injured party may sue the owner of a gambling establishment.
Austrian online casinos work with dollars, euros. Currency conversion is automatic. To withdraw funds, you must specify a credit card or virtual wallet's data and apply it with the specified amount. Tax legislation does not provide for the payment of interest on winnings. The commission depends on the bank that issued the card.