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usUsne
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28 February 2011 - 7:44pm

Casino Software Question and License Question

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Hiya CL Members,

Sitting here anticipating and looking forward to the day US has freedom to play where they damn well please brought up a question.

I love RTG casinos, but as we all know some of the jurisdictions are licensed under not so desirable Costa Rica. My question i am wondering is are casinos bound to certain licenses depending what software is used? Or are they free to get licensed anywhere.

When the day comes we are free to choose i am wondering if any of these casinos will change their licenses as well because they won't be under such legal restraints.

Usne

auCL-Ed
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1 March 2011 - 12:59am
#1

They should be free to get a license anywhere, but all licenses are not equal. For example to get a top class Gibraltar license the casino has to pass background checks against its owners, and has to put up a lot of money, plus pay a small amount of tax (1% ?) each year. And they won't let the casinos accept players from the USA.

One thought I just had is that Gibraltar would probably want the RTG software checked out thoroughly too, which RTG may or may not be willing to do.

The reason the small casinos go for Costa Rica or Belize or Panama is all they need is a few thousand bucks for a regular business license, no questions are asked about who they are or their background, and they pay little or no tax. And as there is no regulation or oversight they can accept players wherever they are in the world.

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ushighroller
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1 March 2011 - 8:09pm
#2

Usne - no disrespect but the subject of freedom is pretty much a mute one... when/if the day comes that WE are all truly free like you say to choose where to play online....believe me we wont really be free. The honest Govt of the USA will only give licenses to their fat cat friends. Their will be no freedom for any online casinos that operate or have ever operated in the USA....be sure of that...

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auCL-Ed
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2 March 2011 - 12:22am
#3

You're on to something there highroller. While I think regulation is desperately needed for U.S. players, it could end up a bit of a poisoned chalice. Although the protection for players and the quality of casinos to choose from would be far better, in a worst case scenario every state sets their own laws and rules and prevents inter-state play on games like poker, you have to give your SSN to play and the government taxes your winnings. Might sound far-fetched or it might not, we'll just have to wait and see.

If you look at the example of France who have recently regulated, they have banned online casinos for the time being, but made online poker and sportsbetting legal. From what I am told by a couple of French people who have emailed me, the choice is not that great, you get worse odds at the approved sportsbetting sites, and you can only play poker against other French players.

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usbarbadosslim93
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3 March 2011 - 1:27am
#4

Ed, what kind of start up costs are these businesses seeing in various countries? I mean there is a fee to start a business, a fee to get an online gaming license, rent for a building, permits to hire employees who are expats (or residents of the country) and various other fees to license software from someone like RTG...how much are our favorite casinos paying to start up (if you know)?

It seems like a very steep cost to start up this virtual casino, and if us Yankees are ever permitted to have legal online gambling, will we see any of these casinos based in the States, or do you think that the US will tax the start up costs of these casinos to where they stay based in Gibraltar, Antigua, etc?

Lots of questions I know, but this topic fascinates me!

usUsne
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4 March 2011 - 4:38am
#5

Great questions barb! I heard for white label casinos it can cost as little as 10k to start your own online casino. But there is conditions, and you are allowed only a percentage as well not having much room for making your own decisions. For example you would have to use the customer service provided by the white label and if that service sucks there is not much you can do about it.

Highroller - I see where you are going with the whole "freedom" thing but you can't honestly think it would be worse then it is for us now. At least we can breath easier and not worry about whether or not we are going to get paid or bilked out of our winnings.

I would much rather pay taxes on a jackpot of 10k then run the risk of not getting paid at all! And if my choices were limited at least i know i have more choices to play at reputable casinos. I also won't have to fret about processors shutting down overnight and my money confiscated either.

I have heard that if US Gov steps in things won't be as peachy keen as we might hope. Compared to what we have now i think it will paradise.

Usne

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4 March 2011 - 11:00am
#6

barbadoss, in fact it is the opposite. Usne is correct, the fly-by-night start-ups in Costa Rica can be set up for under $10,000. Last we checked it cost $5000 for a business license and about $500 in legal fees. Spend a few thousand on a domain name and website template and then they usually pay a share of the operating profits to the software provider. They don't accept Costa Rican players, so all the revenue is offshore which means under local law they pay no tax either. That's why there are so many shonky operators based there - its cheap and easy to set up, and there is very little background checking done to see if the person is reputable and capable of running a casino.

There has been talk that if the U.S. does regulate, then they will make moves to bring the servers, billing etc onto U.S. soil. That way they get the tax from the players and the jobs from the operators. If that does happen, it wouldn't be a problem for the big operators like Party Gaming, 888, or 32 Red for example. Plus you'll see most of the big Vegas casinos open up an online site - they would be silly not to. I don't think you will see casinos leaving Gibraltar for example. The most likely scenario would be to open up an American based subsidiary that caters to American players, and leave the rest of the world on the Gibraltar license.

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