Is Online Gambling Legal in Georgia?

Date:2024-03-09 Category: Online gambling market
Is Online Gambling Legal in Georgia?

Before getting started on the subject, let’s clarify that by Georgia, we mean the country of Georgia at the intersection of Asia and Europe and not the American state. This country Has recently made its gambling policies more strict, so it’s best to familiarize yourself with all the new and old regulations. Keep reading to learn the rules of online gambling in Georgia, the best online casinos in the country, and the restrictions of gambling.

 

Is Online Gambling Legal in Georgia?

Is Online Gambling Legal in Georgia?

The short answer is yes. Online gambling is offered in Georgia, but there are limitations. The new rules allow the country’s land-based casinos to get an online casino license, including the most famous casinos, such as Crystalbet, Adjara Group, and Iveria. Online slots are also limited to retail slot parlors, and only physical bookmakers can accept online sports bets.

It’s not impossible to get online-only licenses in Georgia. Still, the government requests €1.6m per year for each license holder, which is an unbelievably large amount of money for this small region.

 

All About the Gambling History in Georgia

All About the Gambling History in Georgia

Even though gambling in Georgia dates back to 1920, it took a long while for it to become popular. That year, the first casino opened up in the capital of Georgia, Tbilisi, but was closed shortly after. When Georgia was under the rule of Soviet Russia between the years 1921 and 1991, almost all forms of gambling were illegal, and you couldn’t find any casinos in the country. When the regime changed, gambling became one of the fastest-growing industries in Georgia and still continues to grow each year.

The introduction of online gambling also gave an amazing boost to this industry, to the point that about 70% of the entire gambling revenue was generated from online gambling. In 2018, gambling gross revenue broke all the records of the previous years by generating one-third of the country’s GDP.

 

See also  Is online gambling legal in Maryland?

 

New Rules to Make Gambling Safer in Georgia

In recent years, the government made a few adjustments to the rules to combat the negative aspects of gambling on the people of the country. In the early 2000s, the gambling taxes were low, the regulations were somewhat loose, and it was much easier to get a casino license, which brought about the growth of the gambling industry. This industry generates $98 million in taxes for Georgia and has put 10,000 people to work, but the social costs became a concern to the government, so they were forced to step on the imaginary gambling breaks.

In 2021, the government implemented a rule that prevented anyone under the age of 25 from participating in online or offline gambling. However, this didn’t stop those who wanted to gamble since they could use other people’s IDs to sign up. In December of 2022, a new law limited the number of those who can gamble in Georgia to about a million people. This law states that these groups of people are now forbidden to take part in gambling:

  • Those who receive government assistance;
  • Government workers;
  • Anyone under the age of 25;
  • Those who’ve been declared gambling addicts by court orders or themselves.

To further restrict participation in gambling, it’s also illegal to advertise gambling on television, websites, and even outdoors. The gambling sector will also face an enormous amount of taxes, up to 70%.

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Push Back on Gambling Laws

Push Back on Gambling Laws

These restrictive new regulations were highly controversial, as they made a significant impact on the country’s economy. The biggest protestors to this law were the sports teams and athletes, who made most of their income from gambling company sponsorships. In opposition to these rules, many Georgian athletes gathered at a press conference held by the Georgian Gambling Association. They declared that even though gambling platforms could still sponsor athletes, their resources were heavily depleted due to the increased taxes.

 

Illegal and Legal Types of Gambling in Georgia

Almost all gambling games are available in the country of Georgia, including poker, bingo, lottery, and sports betting. However, all forms of wagering on blood sports are illegal, as they are considered animal cruelty.

 

Tips and Facts for Gambling in Georgia

  • Since Georgia is surrounded by Islamic countries that implement heavy restrictions when it comes to gambling, gambling has become a popular tourist attraction in this country. All tourists and expats are free to gamble in Georgia.
  • Your gambling winnings in Georgia will be subject to a 2% tax, but the majority of taxes have to be paid by the casino.
  • Around 700 unlicensed gambling sites abroad target Georgian players, so it’s best to stay vigilant when gambling online and use only legal platforms.
  • You should know that all the best online casinos in Georgia offer multiple banking options, including PayPal, American Express, PaySafe, Neteller, pay by phone, and direct bank transfer.

 

See also  Online Gambling Laws Around the World

 

The Best Legal Bookmakers in Georgia

Since online gambling is legal in Georgia, it’s best to stick to licensed platforms that operate in the country. Gambling on these sites means you’ll have to pay minimal amounts in taxes, but you’ll feel safe entrusting your money. These are the best local bookmakers in the country:

  • Adjarabet;
  • Tbilisi Bed;
  • Crystalbet;
  • Liderbet;
  • Europe-Bet.

These are some of the International and Russian betting companies that have been developing in Georgia:

  • FonBet;
  • Unibet;
  • PariMatch;
  • Leon;

 

Conclusion

Not only is online gambling legal in Georgia, but it’s also extremely popular amongst both locals and tourists. Just remember, you have to be older than 25 years old, and you can’t be a government worker. Even though the taxes have been heavily increased for land-based and online casinos, as a player, you don’t need to worry about taxes at all. The government of Georgia has set high license fees for those who want an online-only casino, so most of the online options come from land-based casinos. Because of this, a great way to verify a casino’s legitimacy in Georgia is by checking to see if they have a real-life casino location or not.

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