Gambling Firms May Be Forced to Pay £100m a Year to Fight Addiction

Written by:
Gilbert Horowitz
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It keeps getting more difficult for bookmakers operating in the United Kingdom with no real breaks in sight.  On Monday we learned that online operators may be forced to pay 1 percent or up to £100m of winnings to the The National Health Service (NHS).


Clinicians and campaigners welcome the concept.  Bookmakers do not.

The £100m figure is derived from the £10bn the industry took in last year.

Land-based casinos and bookmaking shops will pay 0.4% on revenue.

None of this is etched in stone.  The proposed changes will be subject to an eight-week consultation period.

Compulsory payments will replace the voluntary system that has been in place since Tony Blair’s Labour government liberalised gambling laws in 2007.

What's the most gambling addicted country in the world you ask?  Believe it or not, it isn't the UK, which ranks at No. 6.  The nation hosting the most gambling degenerates is none other than the United States of America.  Total Gambling Gross Win: $119 Billion.  China follows at No. 2.  Surprisingly, Japan comes in at No. 3 despite having some of the more stringent gambling regulations.  

“Gambling firms should always pay their fair share and this new statutory levy will ensure that they are legally required to do just that,” said the gambling minister, Stuart Andrew.

It could be worse.  The Horserace Betting Levy Board is a UK statutory body that charges at the rate of 10% of the amount by which an Operator's profits.

Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer said of the proposed plan:

"We are taking the next step in our plan to protect those most at risk of gambling harm with a new levy on gambling operators to pay for treatment and research.

"All gambling operators will be required to pay their fair share and this consultation is an opportunity for the industry, clinicians, those who have experienced gambling harm and the wider public to have their say on how the proposed gambling operator levy should work.

"The introduction of this levy will strengthen the safety net and help deliver our long-term plan to help build stronger communities while allowing millions of people to continue to gamble safely."

Not So Fun Fact: It is estimated that over 80% of people who suffer from some type of gambling addiction never seek treatment, no matter how bad their problem is. And of those who do eventually seek treatment, more than 70% end up gambling uncontrolably again.

- Gilbert Horowitz,

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