Take a Look in the Netherlands: Uncovering the Recent Regulations for Online Gambling Sites

As the Netherlands shifts from a grey market to one of regulated online casino operations, many international players have taken advantage in late 2021. To celebrate the anniversary of when Dutch casinos were first granted licenses, let’s go over what these regulations entail and how they will shape competition with Holland Casino for this lucrative market!

What is the Ksa?

The Ksa or Kansspelautoriteit is the Dutch government’s governing entity for all forms of gaming, both in person and online. It’s an independent administrative body that guarantees the country regulations concerning safe, lawful, responsible and fair gambling are followed. These principles have been credited to its primary goals.

  • Guaranteeing gamblers safety and security.
  • Averting gambling addiction
  • Fighting against unlawful and criminal acts.

In addition to those three objectives, the Ksa must also fulfill four statutory responsibilities:

  • Ensuring a safe and equitable gaming market for all participants.
  • Supervision
  • Spreading awareness of the dangers of addiction.

The Ksa in the Netherlands issues licenses to all approved providers of chance-based games. It is considered unlawful to offer any variation of these activities without a valid online casino license, which applies even to distant operators hosting slots, live casinos, sportsbooks, bingo sites and lotteries over the web.

What are the new online casino regulations?

On February 20, 2019, a new regulation was introduced to the Netherlands Laws on Gaming and Gambling Tax as well as other laws regarding gambling. In short, both domestic and foreign establishments are now able to lawfully offer remote games of chance in the country. However, they must first apply for a remote gaming license from the Kansspelautoriteit through submitting an application beforehand. In 2019, the “Wet Kansspelen op Afstand” (KOA), or Remote Gambling Law was launched. It took until October 2021 for legal Dutch online casinos to effectively become operational, with Holland Casino being one of the firsts. This law implements measures that promote responsible gambling habits, fair game regulation and taxation on winnings from any form of gaming.

The following games fall under the KOA law:

  • Poker
  • Bingo
  • Slot machines such as slot machines
  • Live casino games such as roulette, blackjack or baccarat
  • Sports betting
  • Lotteries

Payment options and restrictions

The Dutch legislature has limited the ability of its citizens to gamble online without a valid license. Financial service providers are even prohibited from processing payments between players and unlicensed operators, making it nearly impossible for them to participate in this activity.

Dutch players have found it increasingly complicated to participate in foreign online casinos. To make matters worse, popular payment providers such as Neteller and Skrill have been blocked from completing casino transactions within the Netherlands.

Age restrictions

To ensure the safety of all players, anyone who wishes to participate in online casino games or sports betting must be at least 18 years old. Casino bonuses and other promotions can only be made available for those aged 24 and over. To verify age and identity, licensees may require an ID copy but more often than not identification will suffice if it is done via iDEAL, Klarna, or Trustly transfer.

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To publicize online casino or sports gaming in the Netherlands, specific criteria must be met. For example:

  • No role models under the age of 25
  • Clearly understandable bonuses
  • Advertising not directed at vulnerable groups
  • No advertising on TV between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m.

In addition to the conditions mentioned, you can find further information on Ksa’s website.

Gaming tax

The gaming tax is one of the most contentious taxes, and there are arguments about whether taxing casino winnings is justifiable. Nevertheless, Dutch players will be subject to a hefty 29% taxation on their net monthly gambling or sports betting earnings over €449; that includes both wagers and wins. This levy will be withheld automatically by the respective gaming provider.

Who has a Casino License?

The Dutch gaming industry has already been filled with numerous Dutch, Belgian and international iGaming corporations. Holland Casino being the first to possess a license; along with Jack’s Casino were two of the leading companies in this endeavor.

Belgian operators Bingoal and Circus had already established a Dutch client base before the new regulation came into effect, and they were quick to capitalize on the new license. International players such as Kansino (from Play North Limited), was among the first to receive a license.

More online casino licensees on the way!

When the Dutch gambling license approval process began on April 1, 2021, many operators were unable to apply due to being restricted by a ‘cooldown period’ as imposed by the Ksa. This punishment was given for any online casino that had chosen to offer their services without first obtaining an official Dutch gaming license – completely disregarding all regulations and guidelines set in place.

On October 1, 2021, many operators were approved for a license to enter the market; yet some applicants still need to make adjustments before being accepted. Although these names are not officially revealed, rumors have been circulating that Polder Casino and Tonybet may be part of this group. Nonetheless, those in contention must meet all requirements set by Ksa if they wish to become licensed participants in the market.

In April 2022, the Ksa opened their doors to a new batch of prospective providers and finally ended their cooling-off period. This group included Unibet who were granted licenses in July 2022 and are now available on the market. Other expected applicants include well-known Dutch brands such as Kroon Casino, run by Betsson, alongside major players LeoVegas, PokerStars, 888 and William Hill.

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