The Gambling Commission has launched a consultation on society lottery reform.
The Commission is seeking views on strengthening some aspects of the licence conditions and codes of practice (LCCP) and producing guidance related to information available to consumers.
It said: “In June 2018 the Government published a consultation on society lottery reform, seeking views on potential changes to sales and prize limits for large and small society lotteries.
“In July 2019, the Government announced that it intends to amend section 99 (3) of the Gambling Act 2005 to raise the per draw limit on lottery proceeds (ticket sales) from £4 million to £5 million, with the result that the maximum individual prize will raise from £400,000 to £500,000.
“In addition, the annual aggregate proceeds limit will rise from £10 million to £50 million. The Gambling Commission is required by section 99 of the Act to attach conditions to lottery operating licences for the purposes of achieving the requirements of section 99.
“So the current limits, which are reflected in licence conditions attached to all society lottery operating licences, will also need to be amended to reflect the changes.”
The reasons for changes to, and levels at which the limits will be set are explained in the Department for Digital, Culture Media & Sport’s responses document ‘Government response to the consultation on society lottery reform’.
The Gambling Commission are also looking at the current regulatory requirements to ensure that issues related to the fair and open licensing objective, regarding transparency to consumers, are addressed. The consultation seeks views on strengthening some aspects of the Licence conditions and codes of practice (LCCP) and producing guidance related to information available to consumers.
Small society lotteries
The 2018 consultation also sought views on the current limits for small society lotteries which require registration with local authorities.
The options set out in the consultation were:
Individual per draw sales limits
- Retaining the threshold per draw sales limit at which a smaller large society lottery needs a Gambling Commission licence at £20,000;
- Raising the limit to £30,000; o Raising the limit to £40,000; (Government has no preferred option)
Annual sales limits
- Retaining the threshold annual sales limit at which a smaller large society lottery needs a Gambling Commission licence at £250,000;
- Raising the limit to £400,000;
- Raising the limit to £500,000 (Government has no preferred option)
There had been no strong call for changes in relation to small society lotteries, but they were included within the consultation on the basis that changes to the thresholds for large society lotteries would bring more within the small society lotteries scope, and the lighter touch regulatory regime of local authority registration.
Concerns were expressed about the increased administrative burden on local authorities and there was additional concern that the capacity of local authorities to scrutinise lottery returns may be diminished with the additional workload. As a result, there are no changes proposed to small society lotteries.
More information on the consultation can be found on the Commission’s website: https://consult.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/author/society-lottery-reform/