Lord Foster Calls For Updated UK Gambling Laws

  By benboland – Last updated 15 Mar 2022

Lord Foster has decried the current gambling legislation in the United Kingdom as inadequate and called for them to be updated to better represent the habits of players in 2022.

Foster, a Liberal Democrat peer and former MP, told the BBC that the technology, especially the convenience of mobile phones, had led to an increase in people who gamble, with the current laws in place now “out of date”.

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“It’s worth remembering that the legislation that provides the regulation around gambling was introduced before the first smartphone was invented. As many people have said, ‘it’s analogue legislation in a digital age’.”

Lord Foster

Foster has been lobbying for gambling reform since 2004 and an update is due in the near future with Westminster promising a comprehensive overhaul and a white paper is set to be produced this year.

Current law

Currently, players and operators in the UK are bound by the Gambling Act 2005 and the country is one of the most regulated in the world. The government promised to review this in their 2019 general election manifesto, though according to The Guardian this has been delayed until this spring.

This law has the requirement for all casinos in the UK gambling industry to be licenced by the Gambling Authority; this includes complying with a code of conduct around fairness and advertising.

Possible changes

As well as better representing the gambling habits and requirements of players and their access to modern technology, the reform to the 2005 law when it comes is likely to change the landscape of the industry.

While player welfare and responsible gambling measures will be at the forefront of any changes, there are likely to be several key updates that will be worth noting. Some of these could include:

  • Stake limits
  • Stricter checks on player affordability
  • A sponsorship ban for sports teams
  • A levy to fund gambling addiction treatment
  • New rules around advertising