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Gambling in Lithuania

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Lithuania is a unitary state. Law on Games of 17 May 2001 (No IX-325) establishes the conditions and procedure for the operation of gaming in the Republic of Lithuania. Furthermore, the Law on lotteries of 1 July 2003 (No IX-1661) regulates the conditions and procedure for operating lotteries in the country. The purpose of the Law on Lotteries is to ensure the fulfilment of obligations undertaken by lottery operators in respect of players and to ensure the protection of the rights of players and lottery operators.

Gaming licences shall be issued by the State Gaming Control Commission (hereinafter referred to as the “Control Commission”). Prior to issuing a gaming licence, the Control Commission must receive the conclusions of the State Security Department, the Financial Crime Investigation Service under the Ministry of the Interior, the Special Investigation Service and the Police Department under the Ministry of the Interior. According to the Gaming Law there are different types of gaming licences and they can be issued to operate:

  1. table games and category A machine gaming;
  2. category B machine gaming;
  3. bingo;
  4. totalisator;
  5. betting.

A single company may be issued all types of licences.

Gaming shall be operated by public and private companies which act in accordance with the procedure established by the Lithuanian Company Law and which have obtained a licence to carry out this activity and permits to open gaming machine halls, bingo halls and gaming establishments (casinos) or when the Control Commission approves totalisator or betting regulations.

It is prohibited to operate gaming which is not provided for in the Gaming Law or to operate it in violation of the procedure established in the Law on games.

Definitions

Lithuanian Law on Games recognizes following types of gaming:

Machine gaming

– games by gaming machines of category A are played when tokens are inserted into the gaming machine and the winnings are paid out in tokens by the machine. The result of the game and the amount of winnings are determined by the gaming machine;

– games by gaming machines of category B are played when coins and (or) tokens are inserted into a gaming machine and the winnings are paid out in money or tokens.

The result of the game and the amount of winnings are determined by the gaming machine.

Bingo

Is a game which is played with cards bearing numbers and a scoreboard; the amount of winnings depends on the total amount of stakes and the combination of numbers selected at random. The total bingo winnings fund shall comprise at least 50 percent of the total amount of stakes.

Table games

– roulette is a game which is played by guessing in which slot a ball dropped on a spinning wheel will stop; the amount of winnings depends on the total amount of stakes and the winning ratio fixed in advance;

– card or dice game is played when the winner and the amount of winnings is determined on the basis of symbols of the cards dealt or the score of dice.

Totalisator

Is a game which is played by guessing the result of a sporting event where the amount of winnings depends on the ratio between the bet size fixed in advance by totalisator operators and the winnings fund. The total totalisator winnings fund shall comprise at least 50 percent of the total amount of the bets made.

Betting

Means mutual betting on the outcome of an event based on guessing where the amount of winnings depends on the amount of the bet made and the betting ratio fixed in advance by the betting intermediary.

Lotteries

The Law on Lotteries of 1 July 2003 (No IX-1661) divides lotteries according to their scale into national and local lotteries.

According to their nature lotteries are divided by this Law into:

– numeric lotteries where a correct choice of numbers and/or other symbols leads to winning a prize, while the prize and its amount are predetermined by the sum paid for the lottery ticket and the selection of numbers and/or other symbols chosen by the player matches the winning selection in a lottery. The price of a numeric lottery ticket shall be fixed or the player may choose the ticket price;

– instant lotteries where prizes and their amount become known immediately after the player purchases a lottery ticket and checks it in accordance with the procedure set out in the lottery rules. The price of an instant lottery ticket shall be fixed;

– classic lotteries where prizes are won by choosing a lottery ticket with printed numbers and/or symbols unknown to the player, while the prize and its amount is predetermined by the number of numbers and/or other symbols printed on the lottery ticket that matches those drawn in a lottery. The price of a classic lottery ticket shall be fixed;

– sports lotteries where a correct choice of numbers and/or other symbols which specify the result of a sporting event leads to winnings a prize, while the prize and its amount are predetermined by the number of correct numbers and/or symbols chosen by the player which depends on the result of the sporting event. The price of a sports lottery ticket shall be fixed.

According to the manner of distributing lottery tickets, data processing and paying out prizes, lotteries are subdivided into:

– remote communication computer lotteries where lottery tickets are sold and prizes are paid out through remote communication computer network terminals located in different places of the Republic of Lithuania and linked by way of telecommunication with the central host computer which ensures a centralised recording of lottery ticket sales and prize pay-outs;

– offline lotteries where lottery tickets are sold and prizes are paid out without the use of remote communication computer network terminals;

– telephone lotteries where the information required for entering a lottery is transmitted to the lottery’s computer database by telephone and a recording is made in the database evidencing participation in the lottery. The player shall pay for entering the lottery through a telephone network operator;

– online lotteries where the information required to enter a lottery is transmitted to the lottery’s computer database by the Internet and a recording is made in the database evidencing participation in the lottery. The player shall pay for entering the lottery through telecommunication service systems of credit institutions.

Media gambling, promotional games and charity lotteries are not explicitly regulated by Law. If required, such games will be regulated by decision of state authority according to the existing regulation by analogy.

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