Czech Republic: Welfare recipients to be banned from playing slot machines
The Czech lower house approved new regulations and taxing of gambling on 13 April. The law is one of several measures against gambling and will contribute mainly by restricting who is able to play games of chance.
Through the maintenance of a registry, persons who receive the kind of benefit called "aid to those in material distress", who are bankrupt, or who have been banned from gambling by the criminal justice authorities will not be allowed to gamble. It will also be possible for people to voluntarily ask that their names be added to the registry.
The law makes it possible for staff of the Customs Administration to enter gambling establishments to audit them. Customs officials will also have the right to set punishments and enforce sanctions.
The customs officials will be able to audit whether firms are fulfilling their reporting obligations as well as to verify the age of gamblers and whether they are on the list of banned persons. The licensing of gambling establishments will also undergo a new, two-phase process.
The Czech Finance Ministry will ascertain whether requirements are met for the basic permit, verifying the applicant's eligibility and whether the applicant fulfills all of the professional and technological requirements, but permission to house a gambling establishment in a certain location will be in the exclusive purview of the relevant municipality. The new law is meant to replace the existing lottery law from 1990 and will take effect in 2017.
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