The department will be closed from Wednesday 27 December 2023 to Monday 1 January 2024. We will respond to queries in the New Year. Best wishes for a safe and happy festive season.
This guideline is designed to provide information in regard to the subject matter covered, and with the understanding that the Gaming and Wagering Commission is not passing legal opinion or interpretation or other professional advice. The information
is provided on the understanding that all persons undertake responsibility for assessing the relevance and accuracy of its contents.
Under the Gaming and Wagering Commission Act 1987, the Gaming and Wagering Commission (the commission) may take steps to minimise harm to the community caused by gambling. The commission may carry out investigations and inquiries it considers to be necessary
or expedient to ensure compliance with the legislation and its policies.
The purpose of this guideline is to clarify the legislative requirements surrounding gambling advertising and the offering of certain benefits, considerations or rewards (for instance ‘inducements’). The attached table provides specific examples
of what the commission considers to be both lawful and unlawful advertising.
An inducement can be distinguished as something that is extraneous or separate and distinct from the core gambling products and services offered by the gambling operator.
Under regulation 43 of the Gaming and Wagering Commission Regulations 1988 (the regulations), it is unlawful to advertise, offer and/or provide an inducement in return for a person opening a betting account, or for referring another person to open an
account. The penalty is a fine of $1000.
Gambling advertisements must not include aspects that are not considered to be in the public interest, including inducements to participate in and continue to gamble. This is explained further in the Publishing Advertisements section of the guideline.
Finally, it is an offence to offer and/or provide an inducement in return for a person participating in or continuing to gamble, unless that person is an existing customer.
Direct communications with existing customers are not considered to be published gambling advertisements for the purposes of the regulations (except in relation to the requirement to contain the details of gambling help services) and so any reference
to advertising and inducements in this guideline specifically excludes direct customer communications.
Trade promotion lotteries and dividends are not considered to be inducements for the purposes of the regulations and are therefore permitted to be advertised and provided. These exceptions are explained further below.
A trade promotion lottery is a lottery that is conducted to promote the purchase of goods/use of services, in which every participant takes part:
The trade promotion lottery must be used as a marketing activity to reward/retain existing patrons, rather than encouraging them to gamble more than they usually would.
A dividend amount paid out for a winning bet/pre-defined outcome (for example doesn’t win but comes second) is not considered to be an inducement, provided the amount is immediately with drawable and not subject to future turnover requirements or
other conditions (unless the condition is defining a maximum stake, refund or credit amount).
Inducements that are directly communicated to existing customers, who have agreed to receive such communications, are permitted and are not considered to be published gambling advertisements for the purposes of the regulations (direct communications must
still contain the details of gambling help services).
The inducements may only be communicated to the customer by sending them (including by way of email, text etc) directly to the customer or by displaying them on the operator’s website/app once the customer has logged into their account.
The following criteria must also be met:
The regulations define a gambling advertisement as any advertisement that:
Publish is defined in the regulations as:
'to bring to the notice of the public or a section of the public by means of newspaper, television, radio, the internet or any other form of communication.'
Other forms of communication include direct marketing to non-customers, social media, websites, billboards, bus stops, shopping centre promotions etc.
Advertisements displayed on the physical premises of the gambling operator or on the members’ section of an operator’s website (for instance once the customer has logged in) are not considered to be published for the purposes of the regulations.
Gambling advertisements must not:
Any advertisement containing a ‘disclaimer’ that the inducement is not available to WA residents is prohibited. It is the responsibility of the gambling operator to ensure that prohibited advertisements are not published in WA, including by
way of geo-blocking digital advertisements.
The commission will not consider that advertisements have been published, for the purposes of the regulations, if the publication of a prohibited advertisement occurs in WA inadvertently. This means that the publication or communication is intended primarily
or substantially for an audience outside of WA, and the gambling operator has taken reasonable steps to prevent the advertisement from being accessed in WA. For example, a social media campaign where geo-blockers are used to prevent WA residents accessing
the advertisement, is accessed by a WA resident through use of a virtual private network (VPN) on their computer.
No further communications may be sent to the customer from the time their unsubscribe request is received.
The commission will not enforce the provisions of regulation 43 in respect of the advertising and provision of certain inducements which are published on platforms that exclusively provide racing content. However, in order to minimise harm to the community
caused by gambling, advertisements that aim to entice people to open a betting account will not be permitted.
The following types of offers are not permitted to be advertised in WA on racing platforms:
The racing platform must predominantly and substantially be dedicated to thoroughbred, harness and/or greyhound racing. This includes websites, television channels, written publications and radio stations.
Such platforms also include:
It is an offence to publish a gambling advertisement that is prohibited under regulation 43(2)(a) — 43(2)(g) of the regulations. However, this offence does not apply to a publisher if they have received written approval for the publication of the
advertisement from the applicable gambling operator.
Publishers are still responsible for ensuring that the advertisement does not breach the following codes of practice (regardless of whether the gambling operator has ‘approved’ the advertisement):
All gambling advertising must contain gambling help counselling service details.
Advertisements that are published in audio (radio) and audio-visual (television, emails, social media etc) must include the:
Advertisements that are published in any other form (newspaper, magazine, posters etc) must include the:
The counselling services and responsible gambling message must be prominently displayed or clearly and audibly stated in the advertisement.
Outside of the general guidance contained in this document, the Gaming and Wagering Commission is unable to advise gambling operators and publishers whether their proposed advertisement in acceptable. It is the responsibility of the gambling operator
to obtain independent legal advice on the appropriateness of any proposed advertisement.
The following table shows (non-exhaustive) examples of advertising that is permitted versus advertising that would not be permitted under the regulations:
Trade promotion lottery
Do not submit enquiries with this form.