Online Poker Legality In Canada
Before you play online poker, you should know about the laws that govern the internet poker scene in Canada. Since poker sites started accepting players from Canada a few years ago, there have been changes in the online poker scene in the country. The current gambling laws in Canada favor poker rooms operated by provincial governments. The only laws that apply to online poker are those for the offline version of the game.
Through this article, you will get a detailed picture of the online poker world in Canada. In addition, you will also get answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about playing the game on the internet in Canada. The key aim of providing this information is to help Canadian players know their rights and limitations. Using this information, you can play online poker in Canada.
Is it Legal to Play Poker Online in Canada?
Yes, Canadians can play poker without fearing criminal charges. Based on the law for offline poker, only gambling operations by provincial governments are legal in Canada. However, no laws prohibit players from accessing sites run from jurisdictions outside Canada. Players can make real money transfers using methods offered by the poker site they play at. This will be contingent on the laws set by the bodies that license and regulate them.
One factor that Canadians should keep in mind when playing poker online is that the site they join should be reliable. You can be sure that the gaming environment at a trustworthy site will be fair and safe.
Canadian players may not be breaking the law when they log on to play poker online, says Canadian lawyer Zak Muscovitch. “What is illegal is to operate a common betting house. It is the proprietor of the casino that is the person breaking the law. There is no actual law that would prevent a consumer from using the site.”
Which Poker Rooms Accept Players from Canada?
On our site, we have listed the poker sites that accept players from Canada. These sites are run by companies that don’t have restrictions on accepting Canadian players. The companies are based off-shore and have holdings in tax havens like Kahnawake (a Canadian Reserve) and Antigua. There are a few sites on which Canadian players can access poker games. Among them are Party Poker, 888 Poker and Full Tilt Poker. Look through our reviews of these online poker sites to find out what they offer. This will help you decide which site best suits your gaming requirements.
How does the OLG’s Decision Affect Playing in Ontario?
This is a very good question. In 2010, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Company (OLG) decided to take the plunge into the online poker world. As they have not yet started offering online games, we still do not know what impact this move will have on Canadian laws and poker. Players in the country maybe allowed to play on offshore sites but we are sure the Canadian government will make it illegal for the sites to accept the players.
Similar to Australia, they may pass a law which won’t be enforced. In that case, players will get to still freely play online poker no matter what province they are in. Now that we have answered the most widely asked questions among poker players in Canada, we will now briefly discuss some of the legal history pertaining to online gaming and poker in the country.
Canadian Poker Rules and Legislation
Canada is very different when it comes to laws regarding online gaming and poker rooms. This is a stark difference to its neighbors to the south that have been very tough on online companies that offer poker. Authorities in the US have even gone as far as arresting individuals of companies operating sites illegally in the country.
On the other hand, Canada has chosen to handle the situation through the gradual development of a system of laws and guidelines to regulate gaming. Poker playing is under the official purview of the government. To be honest, it can change any time federally and provincially.
Right now, it does not seem that any moves on tightening gaming regulations will be made for a while. However, this will probably change as many of the provinces such as BC, Ontario and Quebec are looking to get into the field of online gaming and poker. Players should keep their ears and eyes open as the Canadian government is likely to soon change the laws. If they do, the government can end up generating revenue from Canadian poker rooms.
In conclusion, it is legal for players to play online poker in Canada. The odds of laws being drawn up for online poker in the country are uncertain. It’s really the online companies that have to worry about the legalities of operating in Canadian provinces. As there are only few land-based poker rooms in Canada for gambling due to government control, many players seek online poker rooms as they are completely legal for players, at least for now.