Online Gambling Laws in the Baltic States: Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia

  • 2023-09-22

The iGaming business is absolutely legal in Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia. However, each country has its view on gambling, setting appropriate requirements for the age of players, licensing of operators, advertising of casinos, and so on. In the following paragraphs, you will learn what iGaming differences are present in each of the three countries and the general provisions of gambling regulation in Europe.

EU and World Gambling Legislation

To begin with, all forms of online gambling are legal in the EU, including the Baltic countries. This means you are not breaking any laws when you play slot machines, roulette, poker, or sit at blackjack or baccarat tables. Betting on sports is also legal, as well as horse racing and greyhounds, as long as they do not harm animals. Here are the main requirements that gamblers and operators have in the EU.

- The casino site must be licensed.

- The casino must be registered in an authorized jurisdiction.

- The player must be 18 to participate (or another gambling age in his country).

The laws are standard. However, casinos that do business in the Baltic States must pay taxes, just like gamblers who cash out their winnings.

Gambling Provisions in Lithuania

This form of entertainment was legalized in 2016. Local enthusiasts can participate in local and foreign casinos, lotteries, and sports betting. If you are based in Lithuania, there are plenty of virtual casinos available. You can find out more by visiting with the latest news, reviews, and tips for gamblers.

As in any other country, Lithuania has age restrictions. You can visit offline venues if you are over 18. However, you can only access virtual casinos once you turn 21. Besides, enthusiasts pay a flat tax of 18% on their winnings at land-based and online establishments.

Gambling Provisions in Latvia

The first legal Latvian online casino debuted in 2010 after adopting of the relevant law. Local gambling authorities pay special attention to licensing and betting limits on local and offshore platforms. 

These days, Latvia is home to more than five virtual casinos registered outside the country. At the same time, advertising of gambling establishments and any form of games is strictly prohibited. Operators who violate this requirement are threatened with license revocation.

You can visit virtual casinos if you are 18 years old. Winnings of less than 3,000 EUR are not taxable. However, if you cash out over this amount, be prepared to pay taxes of up to 31%.

Gambling Provisions in Estonia

The first Estonian laws on online gambling legalization were adopted in 2010. These days, the laws stipulate that local and foreign operators must obtain an Estonian license before they can open their doors to players. 

Playing casino games and sports betting is allowed for all users over the age of 21. However, you can participate in lotteries if you are over 16. The tax on casino winnings is 5%.

International Criminal Law

ALT Text: The casino chips, money, dice, and hammer symbolize gambling regulation

Operators and players involved in fraudulent operations in Lithuania, Latvia, or Estonia are penalized by international criminal law. The iGaming platform violating local or international laws will get a fine, lose its license, or be closed down. If it is an offshore casino, it will be banned in the territory of the country whose laws and regulations it violated.

In case of the highest violations or large-scale fraud, the owners of the gambling establishment (and even its employees) may be imprisoned. A player who organized a fraudulent approach or a cyberattack on an online casino will receive a fine or a prison sentence.

Final Thoughts

If you are based in one of these countries or will be traveling through them, familiarize yourself with the gambling laws and regulations. Even though this form of entertainment is legal, local authorities strictly regulate it. 

Each sets its own legal age to participate in casino games, sports betting, and lotteries. Besides, they impose taxes on winnings that you will cash out while you are in Estonia, Latvia, or Lithuania.

As mentioned above, players and casino operators are subject to fines and other forms of punishment for violations of local and international laws. Be careful and gamble responsibly.