Is it legal to play at online casinos in Canada?
Majority of Canadians who play online casino games are forced to use international platforms, and no business entity is legally allowed to operate an online casino business from the Canadian soil. Quebec is an exception in this regard where Espace Jeux is run by Loto Quebec.
The Canadian Federal Government has provided legal independence to the territories and provinces, letting them regulate their corresponding online and land-based gaming environments.
Quebec is the only province that has taken advantage of this so far. Other than that, for anyone interested in playing a good variety of online casino games, s/he must visit a reputed international online casino platform such as the Redbet online casino.
About the legality of online casinos in Canada
While it’s not illegal for Canadians to indulge in conventional casino games on the Internet, no one is allowed to run an online casino from Canada, or actively advertise and encourage people to indulge in iGaming.
It implies that you’re allowed to gamble online at any international online casino that accepts people from your province or territory. Hence, it’s very important to research different online casinos to make sure that they’re free to offer their services to people in your area, and have obtained relevant legal certifications to do that. Else, you might not be protected from any illegal money-laundering or fraudulent activities. Please note, there are no records of any Canadian players being charged for playing online casino games.
Majority of the online casinos used by Canadians are run outside of the country, and abide by the Canadian laws. Majority of these casinos have obtained their licenses from places like Alderney, Gibraltar, Curacao or Malta.
Should you be accounting for casino winnings (or losses) in your income taxes?
CRA or Canada Revenue Agency is very clear in this regard. Any earnings from playing at online casinos is not taxable and hence you are not required to report it to the taxation authority. But if such earnings have been made from business-related activities (surrounding casinos) they would indeed be taxable.
So, in case you consider yourself a pro-level online casino player, a pro-blackjack player or a poker professional, you might be asked to report your earnings in the form of income to the tax authorities. But, if you have some other regular income stream and income from these activities is only on the side, you may be exempted from doing so.
Canadians who play regularly at online casinos have tried claiming capital losses due to gambling in the past, but this hasn’t been permitted by the Federal Tax authorities.
Online casinos are being projected as having a very promising future in Canada. Even the Ontario government is in the process of offering online casino games through Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation; they’ve been trying to engage private entities to help them with the project.
Alberta and British Columbia are also in the process of launching their own virtual casinos using the lottery terminals in the retail stores. They might also take the mobile device route.