Online Casino Licenses

There’s been a lot of talk about licensing and regulation of online poker and casinos lately, and it can get confusing if you’re new to the gambling world. What licenses can you trust, and does it matter if you play at an unlicensed site? We’ve got all the answers for you below. Keep reading to see our list of the best licensed and certified online casinos.


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We’ll talk more about the ins and outs of online casino licensing in a minute, but first, we have a critical piece of advice for you: never, ever play for real money at an unlicensed casino site! There is simply no reason not to choose a casino that has the oversight and security that comes with a gambling license. Considering that any reputable casino should be able to get a license with very little trouble, the lack of a license should immediately raise red flags in your mind. Just stay away.

Gambling licenses are available from several jurisdictions around the world, and all good casino sites have a license in one of these places. This allows the site to operate there and take players for real money play. In recent years, many nations have also set up their own licensing systems that gambling companies must comply with in order to offer their services to their citizens. Such regulatory schemes now exist in Italy, France, and several other countries.

Many players wonder why it should matter to them if a gambling site has a license at all, beyond the obvious reason of “why can’t they get one?” that we mentioned above. In actuality, knowing that a casino is licensed by some gambling control agency offers many benefits to players.

First of all, the gambling license certifies that the games offered are on the level. Government agencies are established to audit and verify the fairness and security of the games provided, and any serious issues in this area will result in the revocation of the site’s license.

Licensing also helps make sure that you can trust that you’ll get paid should you win a major prize at a casino. If a gambling company can’t pay their customers promptly and in full, that’s sure to result in having their license pulled. In fact, that’s exactly what happened recently to Full Tilt Poker; after they continued to have difficulties returning the account balances of American players, the Alderney Gambling Control Commission temporarily pulled their license, shutting down the site until Full Tilt could resolve the issue.

Finally – and perhaps most importantly – playing at a licensed casino means you always have someone to complain to in case of any serious issues the casino won’t resolve on their own. You shouldn’t run to the gambling agency that certifies the casino site every time you lose a few hands of blackjack or can’t quite figure out the terms of a bonus. But let’s say that you’ve been waiting far too long to get paid on a withdrawal, and you believe the site in question is stalling. A quick word with the gambling commission that oversees that site will often result in a sudden change in tone from the site, which won’t want to risk losing their license over failing to pay you.

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