Bid to beat the bookies and stop lottery bets

Euromillions

​A growth on bets being offered on EuroMillions results could harm charities

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5th May 2017 by Graham Martin 1 Comment

Moves are being made to stop bookies harming good causes by offering bets on lottery results.

Charities want a loop-hole closed which allows bookmakers to offer odds on the outcome of the EuroMillions draw.

It is illegal to bet on the outcome of the National Lottery – but EuroMillions is not covered by legislation because the draws take place outside the UK.

Charities want this anomaly cleared up, citing fears that a growth in this kind of betting could impact on returns to good causes.

At present, when people buy a lottery ticket, a proportion is channelled to funding bodies who give it to charities.

However, a growth in third party betting, particularly when the stake is offered at a lower price than the cost of a EuroMillions ticket, has the potential to damage this crucial funding stream.

Westminster’s Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has launched a consultation on prohibiting EuroMillions bets.

A DCMS spokesperson said: “The National Lottery was established in order to support good cause projects across the UK, and therefore occupies a unique status… Section 95 of the Gambling Act, prohibits betting on The National Lottery.

“Government has been made aware that some gambling operators are circumventing this restriction by offering bets on the outcome of EuroMillions draws offered abroad.

“They are able to do so because EuroMillions is a lottery run in partnership between a number of lottery operators in European countries and is, technically, a separate game in each participating country despite being the same draw.

“However betting on these EuroMillions draws is clearly contrary to the spirit and intention of section 95, which seeks to preserve a distinction between betting and The National Lottery.

“Without further action, we run the risk of further customer confusion and of a potential threat to good cause returns to The National Lottery. This consultation signals government’s intention to extend the ban on betting to all EuroMillions draws, and in doing so, take precautionary action to protect good cause funds raised by The National Lottery.”

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) has welcomed the move.

Policy officer Ruth Boyle said: “The offering of bets on the EuroMillions has the potential to cause confusion among consumers as people think they are playing EuroMillions when they are actually betting on the outcome of EuroMillions.

“If the practice of offering bets on the non-UK EuroMillions were to proliferate, there are genuine concerns this would impact National Lottery returns to good causes.

“It is clear that there is a least the potential for customer confusion, especially for vulnerable individuals. This is particularly problematic if bets are offered at a lower price than the current cost of a EuroMillions ticket.

“Consumers may well be duped into thinking they are buying a ticket for the EuroMillions and the proposals outlined in the document to prevent the general public being misled through extension of Section 95 to betting on all EuroMillions draws therefore appear practical and reasonable.

“SCVO has researched some of the websites offering betting on EuroMillions and there are clear issues with the marketing of such bets. The websites do not make it clear that they are offering bets on the EuroMillions, rather than a ticket for the EuroMillions draw itself, and also portray the EuroMillions as one single entity, rather than diverse tickets across various countries in Europe.

“This is clearly misleading and it is worrying that such a plethora of websites exist offering such bets. It is SCVO’s belief that there must be maximum clarity in the operation of the EuroMillions as even a small amount of confusion could be enough to discourage individuals to partake in the lottery, thus limiting the money raised for good causes.”

A Big Lottery Fund spokesperson said: "We fully support DCMS’ recommendation and look forward to the outcome of the consultation process.”

Comments

5th May 2017 by Ahmed

Piss off... players should be given a choice, betting on the euromillions at the bookies is much better than playing the euromillions. using stupid good causes as an excuse is not fair, people play to win money, they don't play to pay the middle class or the rich to enjoy luxury that these good causes provide for them (theatres, gated parks and lots of other perks. Freedom of choice my a55. Get 3 numbers playing euromillions and you get £4-£8 from a £2.50 bet or pick 3 numbers for a £1 and get them correct and win £1100. We should have a choice, enough of this so called democracy forcing things upon us.