Following on from the Gambling Act Review, the Gambling Commission is consulting on changes to its requirements on gambling businesses, through the Licence Conditions and Codes of Practice (LCCP) and Remote Gambling and Software Technical Standards (RTS). It is also consulting on proposed changes to its arrangements for Regulatory Panels.

The first consultation package covers the following four areas:

Improving consumer choice on direct marketing

To give consumers more choice over the gambling marketing they receive, the Commission is consulting on introducing a new requirement to give consumers the ability to opt in to the product types they are interested in and the channels through which they receive marketing.

Strengthening age verification in premises

The Commission is consulting on removing the current exemption from carrying out age verification test purchasing for the smallest gambling premises. It is also consulting on changing the relevant ordinary code (good practice) elements of the LCCP to require licensees to have procedures in place requiring staff to age verify customers who appears to be under 25, rather than under 21. It is also seeking views on how licensees make sure they have effective age verification procedures where their premises may not be directly supervised.

Remote game design

The Commission is asking about various changes to existing Remote Gambling and Software Technical Standards. It is also consulting on a range of new requirements, including to reduce the speed and intensity on online products - it is proposing a 5s min game speed. It also proposes removing features which can speed up play to reduce the harm experienced by consumers who are gambling particularly quickly or intensely. Another proposal seeks to remove features which may mislead consumers or create dissociation from awareness of play.

Remote gambling: financial vulnerability and financial risk

The Commission seeks views about new obligations on operators to conduct financial vulnerability checks and financial risk assessments to identify whether a customer’s gambling is likely to be harmful in the context of their financial circumstances.

The Commission is also consulting on:

  • changes to Licence Condition 1.2.1 to clarify and extend the roles captured by the definition of ‘specified management offices’; and
  • changes to the composition and decision-making processes of the Commission’s Regulatory Panels.

The consultations close on 18 October 2023.  The consultations accompany government consultations, which are the subject of a separate article.