The legislation in the country for online gambling is pretty vague, so many players are not sure whether it’s legal to play at slot sites that accept players from Canada. This is why I decided to dedicate an entire article to this matter.
In this article I will try to explain in detail about the gambling laws and regulations, as well as the legal casinos in Canada. I will also present you with a list of the best gambling sites, as well as the best payment methods which you can use to play.
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Is it legal to play online slots in Canada?
When we take a look at the Criminal Code we will see that any gambling activities are deemed illegal. This is why many players think that there are no legal slot sites in Canada, where you can play for real money. But the reality is a bit different. You see, the Criminal Code has an exclusion policy, where each of the provinces are allowed to implement their own gambling policies. So in fact the provinces themselves determine whether online gambling is legal or not for their residents. Since in most provinces online gambling is deemed legal, players can easily find a large number of legal Canadian casinos where they can play slots with real money.
Furthermore, the Criminal Code only applies to online casinos which are based on the territory of Canada. This excludes all online casinos whose servers are located in a foreign country. This makes it very easy for online casinos which are licensed in Malta, Gibraltar or any other state to legally offer their services to Canadian players.
Who regulates gambling in Canada?
Like I said earlier Canadian slot sites can be licensed from any jurisdiction outside of the country. But there are also licensors which operate on Canadian soil. The most popular licensor is the Kahnawake Gaming Commission. They operate on the Mohawk Territory of Kahnawake in Quebec and are in charge of licensing land based casinos on their territory, as well as online casinos. There are many online casinos across the world which wear their seal of approval. So far the commission is doing a great job and all of their licensees are considered to be safe and reputable casinos, where players can freely play for real money.
As far as the rest of the Canadian provinces go each one governs the gambling laws themselves. This is why the laws can be very different from one province to another. Here I will explain what the gambling laws are in each province and whether its residents are allowed to freely play at online casinos or not.
The gambling activities in Alberta are governed by the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission. This commission only deals with land based casinos, lotteries and bingo. Up until now Alberta doesn’t have any laws for online gambling, so players from this province can freely play at Canadian online casinos.
In British Columbia all gambling activities are overseen by the Gaming Policy and Enforcement Branch. Players from this province are allowed to gamble online via PlayNow.com.
In Manitoba the main licensor for gambling is the Liquor and Gaming Authority of Manitoba, which regulates land based gambling activities. They share a partnership with British Columbia, allowing its residents to gamble online via PlayNow.com.
All gambling affairs at New Brunswick are regulated by the Gaming, Liquor and Security Licensing Branch. This branch follows all land based gambling activities, but they don’t have any laws when it comes to online gambling. This makes it easy for residents of New Brunswick to play at legal online casinos.
Newfoundland & Labrador
Gambling in Newfoundland & Labrador is regulated by the Consumer Affairs Division. They oversee all provincial lotteries and gambling events, but they don’t have any laws when it comes to online gambling.
In the Northwest Territories gambling activities are regulated by the Consumer Affairs Department of Municipal and Community Affairs. This territory doesn’t have any laws prohibiting online gambling, so residents from these territories can freely play at online casinos.
Gambling activities in Nova Scotia are regulated by the Alcohol, Gaming, Fuel and Tobacco Division. They oversee all charitable and nonprofit gaming activities. Lottery games and online lottery sales are governed by the ALC.
Online gambling is not regulated in this province so all residents can freely play at Canadian online casinos. All land based gambling activities are governed by the Consumers Affairs Department of Community and Government Services.
Gambling in Ontario is overseen by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission. Residents of Ontario can gamble online via PlayOLG.ca.
Prince Edward Island
In Prince Edward Island charitable gaming events are overseen by the Consumer Services section. The province doesn’t have any online gambling laws till this day.
Online gambling in Quebec is overseen by Loto-Quebec, via the website EspaceJeux.com. all land based gambling activities are governed by two separate regulatory bodies.
All land based gambling activities in Saskatchewan are regulated by the Saskatchewan Liquor and Gaming Authority. So far online gambling is not regulated on the territory of this province.
On the territory of Yukon all gambling activities are regulated by the Professional Licensing & Regulatory Affairs Branch. But this territory doesn’t regulate online gambling, so its residents are free to play at Canadian online casinos.
What payment methods are legal?
Many players ask what Canadian banks allow online gambling? You should know that only four of the major banks will allow you to deposit funds at slot sites in Canada. The rest of the banks won’t allow you to play at any casino sites, no matter if they are legitimates slot sites or if they are top rated. So if you want to freely make deposits and withdrawals via Bank Transfer at casino sites you will have to use The Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC), TD Bank or Bank of Montreal (BMO). These are the only casino sites friendly banks on the territory of Canada.
However there are other payment methods also which allow Canadian residents to freely deposit and withdraw funds from online casinos. Some of the most popular ones being Interac, Instadebit and Citadel. With these payment providers Canadian players can easily play for real money at legitimate slot sites.
Interac is a safe payment method, exclusive to Canada. This is a debit payment service, which means that you can only play with as much money as you put in, without the option to go over a certain limit. This makes it perfect for play at online casinos, since you can never spend more than you intended to.
Instadebit is another great payment service which allows you to make deposits directly to an online casino, by using your bank account. The service allows for users to instantly deposit funds, simply by entering their username and password, along with the amount they want to deposit. The best thing is that the client doesn’t pay any fees for using their service.
Citadel is another banking service, which allows the user to quickly deposit funds to an online casino via their bank account. Citadel is available for use only in Canada and in the US, making it the perfect payment method for Canadian players.