The UK Gambling Commission started this year with many new initiatives and gambling measures, the biggest of which is the credit card gambling ban that will be enforced from April this year. In addition, as part of the UKGC recent regulatory actions, Mr Green is to pay a penalty of £3m for regulatory failures. The latest news that comes from the UKGC is their initiative to begin consultation on potential changes to the LCCP (licence conditions and codes of practice).
The changes to the LCCP will mostly be focused on modifying the methods which licensees must use to report key events to the regulator. The consultation opened on 26 February and will last until 20 May. Overall, the UK Gambling Commission has proposed changes to 17 different articles of the LCCP.
Making data requirements more efficient for the licensees
As we said, the consultation will be open until May and it is split into two parts. The first part is focused on changes to information reporting requirements within the LCCP. On the other side, the second part is focused on regulatory returns and official statistics. The purpose of the UKGC proposals is to make data requirements more efficient for the licensees and for them, by only requesting data that supports their regulatory aims.
The changes that will be made after this consultation should improve data quality and the efficiency of the regulation. In addition, these changes will reflect on the UKGC continued focus on consumers safety and social responsibility. What’s more, the UKGC wants so make sure that requirements are reconciled against the current and future data. The reporting changes will also streamline the UKGC existing requirements and will reduce regulatory burden where possible.
For instance, the changes would remove the phrase “Ensure that the Commission is provided [with information]” concerning offences under the 2005 Gambling Act or breaches of the LCCP. According to the regulator, this was intended to reinforce the fact that the responsibility for meeting the licence conditions rests with licensees, not third parties.
A new licence condition was also introduced
Furthermore, the UKGC introduced a new licence condition that requires licensees to report any case of organised money lending that they are aware of. After these changes, the licensees won’t be longer obligated to make the UKGC aware of the investment that is not by way of subscription of shares. Instead, the licensees will be obligated to inform the UKGC if a senior position at the licensee takes on a different senior position at the company. Also, licence holders would no longer have to notify the UKGC of the receipt of reports from regulatory or government bodies.
The Gambling Commission will also shorten the period for reporting on annual returns to within 28 days of the end of the financial year, rather than 42 days. Additionally, the changes will introduce standardised formats for reporting on suspicious activities that will probably improve efficiency in data collection. Under these changes, the UKGC won’t longer ask the operators to notify them about persons they authorised to offer pool betting in racing or football.
As part of the changes, the social responsibility code will also be amended in order to allow the UKGC to specify the form and manner in which the results of underage gambling will be provided. When the consultation closes in May, the Commission will publish consultation response documents within three months.
It’s expected that any changes to the LCCP after this consultation will take place in October 2020. The UKGC will provide licensees at least three months before the LCCP changes come into effect.