Stricter Gambling Protections Coming to Sweden in April 2024

Sweden is set to implement stricter online gambling regulations starting April 1, 2024. These changes aim to enhance consumer protection and increase penalties for violations of the Anti-Money Laundering Act (AML).

The government consolidated various gambling amendments into a single bill, which was then submitted to the Riksdag (Parliament) for approval. This bill emphasizes consumer safety, sets new standards for telephone sales in the gambling industry, and revises penalties for money laundering offenses.

Under the new revisions to the Gambling Act of 2018, legal online gambling providers will be required to monitor and analyze players’ health and financial status. This measure is seen as vital for protecting consumers from excessive gambling.

The Ministry of Finance, Finansdepartementet, has approved these changes, including tougher fines for gambling providers that breach the Money Laundering Act. The amendments aim to harmonize the penalties for AML violations with those for Gambling Act breaches. This move comes in response to legal debates over how the gambling regulator Spelinspektionen previously handled AML penalties.

A notable addition to the bill is the requirement for gambling-related telephone sales to be presented in writing to consumers. Any agreements not made in this manner will be considered invalid.

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Swedish gambling operators are preparing for these changes, as the government continues to refine the Gambling Act of 2018. Additionally, Parliament is discussing an increase in personal income tax on gambling winnings, potentially raising it from 18% to 22%. This increase is widely criticized by Sweden’s Branschföreningen för Onlinespel (BOS) labeling it a “Christmas Gift” for the offshore casinos.

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