Betting Sites in Jamaica

Jamaica is among the island countries in the Caribbean. It is separated from Haiti by the Jamaica Strait to the east and Cuba which lies about 145 kilometers north. The area is 10,991 square kilometers. Throughout the ages, Jamaica has undergone a rigorous system for controlling its gambling industry. This paper is dedicated to the history, legislative landmarks, regulatory agencies and the current situation of gambling in Jamaica with a special emphasis on betting sites in Jamaica and sports betting.

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History of Gambling Legislation in Jamaica

Gambling in Jamaica has changed a lot during the last couple of decades. Here’s a timeline of the major legislative milestones:

Key Legislative Milestones

  • 1968: Creation of the National Lotteries Commission to spread national lotteries.
  • 1975: The clauses of the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Act which are concerned with licensing scratch-and-win games and radio bingo have been implemented.
  • 1991: Allowing Sports Development Agency Limited and the Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce & Industry to have licenses.
  • 2010: The Casino Gaming Act is the one that led to the establishment of the Casino Gaming Commission.
  • 2014: The gaming laws were altered to permit Caymanas Park to accept bets through text and mobile phone and the U. S. syndication races betting was opened for them as well.
  • 2017: Introducing a new licensing system for online gambling at the 7th Caribbean Gaming Show and Summit.
  • 2018: The formation of the Jamaica Gaming Commission to supervise all betting activities is suggested.
  • 2021: The approval of the Casino Gaming (Amendment) Act which is aimed at attracting a big investment through integrated resort developments.

Gambling Law and Regulation in Jamaica – 5 Things to Know

Jamaica’s gambling industry is very well regulated.

The Jamaica Gaming Commission was established in 2018.

The recent developments are the modernization and new licensing regimes.

Online, horse racing and lottery games are the types of bets that can be made.

The Casino Gaming (Amendment) Act which is going to boost the casino industry.

Regulatory Agencies

Several regulatory bodies oversee gambling activities in Jamaica:

Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Commission (BGLC)

  • Role: It controls the online bookmakers, poker rooms, casinos and bingo operations.
  • Key Functions: The procedures for the issuing of licenses, making sure that the regulations are followed and defending customer rights.

Jamaica Racing Commission

  • Role: Governs sports betting and mainly that of horse racing.
  • Key Functions: The licensing of the racing promoters and the supervision of simulcast racing.

Casino Gaming Commission

  • Role: Created by the Casino Gaming Act of 2010, this commission grants and regulates all casino gaming activities.
  • Key Functions: The above objectives can be achieved by planning a regulatory environment that is in line with the global standards, granting casino licenses and ensuring fair play.

Licensing and Fees of Betting Sites in Jamaica

The licensing of gambling operators in Jamaica is a strict and complicated process that includes many fees. Here’s a breakdown:

Kinds of Licenses and Charges

  • Casino Licenses: This was given by the Casino Gaming Commission for running of land-based casinos.
  • Online Gambling Licenses: The BGLC gives this certification to online bookmakers, poker rooms and casinos.
  • Lottery Licenses: Operated by Supreme Ventures, the Jamaican lottery monopoly.
  • Sports Betting Licenses: Jamaica Racing Commission has issued the license for sports betting operators.

Licensing Fees

  • Land-Based Casinos: The fees differ according to the size and scope of activities.
  • Online Gambling: The fees are calculated basing on the kind and range of online gambling activities.
  • Lottery Retailers: The fees are determined by Supreme Ventures.
  • Sports Betting: The fees are determined by the type of sports betting operations.

Gambling Taxes of Betting Sites in Jamaica

Gambling operators in Jamaica are subject to various taxes:

Tax Rates

  • Land-Based Gambling Establishments: 10% of the gross profits is the royalty.
  • Bookmakers and Online Bookmakers: Sixteen is the age when you can start to work. 5% of gross profits.
  • Sports Betting: 9% of the gross profit.
  • Racing Promoters and Simulcast Racing: No doubt, the above-stated facts are proof that Thaddeus Stevens’ life was a success. 5% of gross profits.

Taxation of Winnings

  • Lottery Winnings: A 20% tax on winnings above $15,000 (Jamaican Dollar, USD $98) is charged.
  • Other Winnings: Usually not taxed, or taxation is neglected.

Prohibited and Permitted Bets

Jamaica’s gambling laws clearly outline the types of bets that are prohibited and permitted:

Prohibited Bets

  • Online Gambling for Residents: It is a crime for the residents to place online bets, while non-residents are allowed to do so.
  • Unlicensed Gambling Activities: All the gambling that is not licensed by the right authorities is forbidden.

Permitted Bets

  • Licensed Online Bookmakers: Operators possessing a valid license can provide online betting services to people who are not residents.
  • Horse Racing Bets: Allowed through the licensed operators such as Caymanas Park.
  • Lottery Games: Administered under the close watch of the National Lotteries Commission and Supreme Ventures, which are very strict.

Recent Developments

Lately Jamaica has been making great efforts to modernize and regulate its gambling industry.

Key Developments

  • 2014: The mobile and text betting will be available at Caymanas Park.
  • 2017: Introduction of the new licensing rules for online gambling.
  • 2018: A draft to create the Jamaica Gaming Commission which unites the BGLC, Jamaica Racing Commission and Casino Gaming Commission.
  • 2021: The Casino Gaming (Amendment) Act got the green light therefore an integrated resorts will be built and this in turn will attract investments.


Jamaica has laid down a complete system of gambling regulation to make sure that it is transparent, fair, and profitable for the economy. The creation of the Jamaica Gaming Commission is a big step towards unification of the regulatory landscape and thus, building a stronger gambling environment. For those who are into Jamaica sports betting and the websites that offer this service in Jamaica, knowing these rules is very important for being a good citizen of the market and successful.

FAQ about Betting Sites in Jamaica

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