Are sports betting in pubs legal?
The answer is yes. If a customer chooses to make a sports bet (independently) inside a pub, that is fine. But unfortunately, it’s not completely straightforward. Pub owners should not facilitate sports betting for customers or act as a link between the two. The landlord, pub owner or supervisor must not provide sports betting within pubs as it’s strictly illegal. The same rules apply for bookmakers. So yes, if you wish to make a bet on any sports via your mobile etc (whilst inside a pub) that’s fine and your business. But you must have an individual account with a licensed bookmaker. The pub should not be involved to any extent. Of course, you can also make bets amongst friends (it’s a free country) but no commercial betting should be facilitated in the pubs unless it’s privately through your independent account. Any pubs acting as betting intermediaries could face a hefty fine, risk being closed down completely or even prosecuted.
Why are sports betting not allowed in pubs?
Sports betting is prohibited inside pubs for many reasons, but the principal reason is social responsibility. It is not socially responsible by government laws as they have declared that it would present a huge risk to the public. Consequently, sports betting in pubs is banned. International research manifested this statement. The relationship between alcohol and gambling behaviours can become extremely unhealthy for an individual. The correlation between both can be mentally, physically and financially shattering.
Heavy drinking will present the possibility of pushing gamblers to make impulse decisions, for example making more and higher bets, as they are less fazed by the consequences when intoxicated. Therefore, they are at higher risk or losing more and potentially getting into financial trouble. Generally, drinking alcohol and gambling are two things that can easily spiral out of control. Of course, the majority of people can entertain both of these things and live a normal life. But we must not forget about the minority that unfortunately create an unhealthy addiction.
Alcoholism or/ and a gambling addiction can ruin peoples lives. It can cause social problems, financial problems, emotional problems, physical problems, psychological problems, occupational problems and many more damages to your life. Therefore, it is a pub owners responsibility to not facilitate sports betting and look after its customers best interests. As it’s evident that sports betting in pubs could be a recipe for disaster.
Does this mean you cannot watch sporting events in pubs?
No. Pub owners can still allow customers to watch any sporting events on their premises. This is the pub owners own personal decision. Of course, many love to watch different sports events with their friends over a chilled beer. It’s a good atmosphere and also brings in custom for the pubs. And despite sports betting being illegal for a pub to facilitate. This doesn’t mean customers cannot make any bets between friends and family or via mobile, with their individual betting account. This isn’t any of the pub owners business. However, it’s important to note that the owner should never allow customers to bet through any channel of their own. For example, via the pub phone or owners phone. This will mean the pub is acting as an intermediary and could get into serious legal trouble. The fine is a whopping $5,000 or even worse closure or a prison sentence.