Not many people are aware that gambling laws were much more well-defined in Australia and most countries prior to the Internet age.

It is clear that you might play pokies or go up to a cash-in-hand wager window and that there was no ambiguity with physical gaming.

However, online gambling has changed the game. It can be a fight to keep up with what is on or not on the allowed list with casinos, bookmakers and betting sites. If you wish to play at any Australian online casino, it's good to know the different laws governing online gambling.

Who's in Charge of Australian Gambling Laws?

In gambling laws, Australia is a little like the US. There is some federal input, particularly in the protection of consumers, but the states and territories regulate individual gambling laws.

Unlike the United States, however, the eight regions have a more consistent approach. At least one casino is located in each country, pokies are available in bars and clubs, with the exception of Western Australia, and sports bets are legal both online and in person.

When you look at the little details, there are variations. For instance, a country may limit $5 on pokies in bars and clubs, while another may have a maximum of $10.

Online Gambling Laws in Australia

In contrast to land-based gambling, Australia's online gambling legislation is subject to the 2001 Interactive Gambling Act.

2001 Interactive Gambling Bill

It is easy to understand the Interactive Gambling Bill because it mentions three forbidden activities.

The following is contrary to Australian Gambling Law:

  • Provide consumers in Australia with a banned interactive gaming service.
  • Provide consumers in Australia with a non-licensed immersive gaming service.
  • Provide customers in specified countries with an Australian immersive gambling service.
  • This unique law concerns casino gambling (table games, pokies, poker).

To sum up, online casinos, whether they come from within the country or from offshore companies, are banned.

Are Australian Online Gambling Laws Strictly Enforced?

Although online casinos are theoretically illegal for Australians, many online casino games are held in Oz. It's not like when you're on your laptop, or mobile phone officials literally gaze over your shoulders. The laws, therefore, apply to suppliers of casino offerings rather than players.

The ACMA

Online gambling complaints are handled by the ACMA or the Australian Communications and Media Authority. Any steps to stop and remove casinos based on such reports can be taken, beginning with a written notice and resulting in substantial fines.

Celebrating 10 years of Native News...

We launched Native News Online back in February 2011 with the belief that everyone in Indian Country deserves equal access to news and commentary pertaining to them, their relatives and their communities. That's why the story you’ve just finished was free — and we want to keep it that way, for all readers. We hope it inspires you to celebrate our first decade with a gift of $10 or more to Native News Online so that we can continue publishing more stories that make a difference to Native people, whether they live on or off the reservation. Your donation will help us keep producing quality journalism and elevating Indigenous voices. Any contribution of any amount — big or small — gives us a better, stronger future and allows us to remain a force for change. Donate to Native News Online today and support independent Indigenous journalism. Thank you.