IGAMING POLAND

Poland – The consequences of paying out the winnings from a foreign casino

I would like to payout 100,000 PLN from online casino winnings. The casino is based outside the country. How to do it to avoid the consequences of the tax office? Is withdrawing small amounts the solution? But with what frequency?

Issues of admission of playing at online casinos are currently regulated by the Gambling Act on April 1’st 2017, based on the Amending Act, a new version of most of the provisions of this Act had been introduced. According to art. 2 § 1 of this Act – games of chance are games, including those organized over the Internet, for cash or material wins, the outcome of which depends in particular on fortuity. These include:

  • numerical games – games in which winnings are obtained by correctly selecting numbers, characters or other distinctions, and the amount of winnings depends on the total amount of paid rates, and keno numerical game in which the winnings are obtained by correctly selecting numbers, and the amount of winnings is a product the rate paid and the multiplier determined for individual winnings;
  • cylindrical games in which one participates in the game by selecting numbers, characters or other distinguishing marks, and the amount of winning depends on the predetermined ratio of the deposit to the winnings, and the game result is determined by a rotating device or cylindrical games organized on these principles on the Internet.

As stipulated in art. 2 § 3 of the Act – games on machines are games on mechanical, electromechanical or electronic devices, including computer games and games corresponding to the rules of games on machines organized by the Internet for monetary or material winnings, in which the game contains an element of randomness. From the content of art. 2 § 5 of the Act shows that games on machines are also games on mechanical, electromechanical or electronic devices, including computer ones, and games corresponding to the rules of games on machines organized via the Internet for commercial purposes, in which the player is not able to obtain monetary or material winnings but the game is random.

Article 3 of the Act indicates that the organizing of games of chance, mutual bets, card games and slot machine games and the pursuit of activities in this field is permitted on the basis of a relevant license, permit or filing.

It is also worth pointing to the content of art. 5 of the Gambling Act. This provision indicates that the activity of numerical games, cash lotteries, telebingo games and slot machine games outside the casino is covered by the state monopoly. The organizing of gambling via the Internet, with the exception of mutual wagering and promotional lotteries, is covered by the state monopoly.

The current Polish regulations do not allow the organization of games of chance via the Internet without a license. It should be noted that both the organizing of gambling contrary to the provisions of the Act and the participation in foreign mutual enterprises are punishable. According to art. 107 of the Act of 10.09.1999’s Fiscal Penal Code – whoever, in violation of the provisions of the Act or the concession or license conditions organizes or conducts gambling, is liable to a fine of up to 720 daily rates or imprisonment of up to 3 years, or both. In addition, whoever participates in a foreign gambling game in the territory of the Republic of Poland is liable to a fine of up to 120 daily rates. If the perpetrator commits the above prohibited act in order to gain material advantage from organizing collective participation in a gambling game, he is subject to a fine of up to 720 daily rates or imprisonment, or both together. In the minority case, the perpetrator of a prohibited act is liable to a fine for fiscal offenses.

In the light of the current regulations, taking part in online gambling games that do not have an appropriate license in Poland is illegal and constitutes a fiscal offense or a crime. As a result, income is obtained from an illegal source.

Summarizing the above provisions, in the light of the current law, playing online on foreign gambling websites from the territory of the Republic of Poland is currently prohibited.

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