Licences

There are twelve fundamental categories of gaming licences. The licensing and governing principles associated with each are prescribed in the Gaming Legislation of 2014.

Section 24 of the Gaming Act 2014 outlines the qualification criteria to be eligible to apply for a licence under the Act. All licence applications must be lodged with the Secretary of the Board, as per Section 27 of the Act in a form determined by the Board, with accompanying information and documents determined by the Board.

 


 

1.

A gaming licence shall

a.
knowingly or recklessly makes any false statement in any application, affidavit or return under this Act;
b.
in or on any licensed premises conducts any gambling game which has not been approved or otherwise than in accordance with the approved rules of such gambling game;
2.
A gaming licence shall authorise, subject to any conditions to which it may be subject

a.
the operation of a casino and the playing in or on designated areas of the casino resort, or such various separate parts of such premises as are specified in the licence, including private gaming areas approved by the Board in the prescribed manner, of any gambling game, including, but not limited to

i)
gambling games played on traditional or electronic gaming tables and slot machines
ii)
any gaming device, operated for any consideration, for the play of poker, blackjack, any other card or table game, or keno or any simulation or variation of any of the foregoing, including, but not limited to, any game in which numerals, numbers, or any pictures, representations, or symbols are used as an equivalent or substitute for cards in the conduct of such game
b.
the placing and acceptance of bets on any event
c.
the conduct of pari-mutuel wagering through a hub, provided that

i)
the licence holder simultaneously transmits the pictures of the races on which wagers are accepted
ii)
wagering may be accepted only into pools offered in relation to races held on tracks which have been approved in writing by the Board
d.
the arrangement, organization and operation of junkets.

 

 

1.

A proxy gaming licence may be applied for only by and issued only to the holder of a gaming licence and only in respect of the casino resort managed by it.

2.
A proxy gaming licence shall authorize

a.
the operation and conduct of proxy gaming on or from the casino resort managed by the holder of the relevant gaming licence
b.
the participation in proxy gaming by the patrons of such licence holder referred to in section 2, in respect of whom proxy wagering accounts have been established

3.
The holder of a gaming licence may not offer proxy gaming in any form in any part of the casino resort managed by it, unless authorised thereto by a proxy gaming licence.

 

 

1.
A mobile gaming licence may be applied for only by and issued only to the holder of a gaming licence.

2.
A mobile gaming licence shall relate to both the operator and the premises specified in the licence.

3.
A mobile gaming licence shall authorise the conduct of mobile gaming within any permitted area of the casino resort.

 

 

1.

A restricted interactive gaming licence may be applied for only by and issued only to the holder of a gaming licence.

2.
A restricted interactive gaming licence shall relate to both the operator and the premises specified in the licence.

3.
The holder of a gaming licence may not offer proxy gaming in any form in any part of the casino resort managed by it, unless authorised thereto by a proxy gaming licence.

a.
citizens of permitted foreign jurisdictions
b.
persons located on the licensed premises of the holder of a restricted interactive gaming licence, to the extent that such persons are not precluded from participation in such gaming by any other law, from a website established, maintained and operated by the licence holder in The Bahamas.

4.
The holder of a restricted interactive gaming licence shall conduct the operations authorised by the licence only from a website

a.
located, operated, managed and maintained in The Bahamas;
b.
which conforms with all the prescribed requirements
c.
which is approved by the Board.

5.
The holder of a gaming licence may not offer any form of interactive gaming from any website operated and managed in The Bahamas, unless authorised thereto by a restricted interactive gaming licence.

 

 

1.
A junket operator licence is required by every person, other than a junket representative, who is directly or indirectly involved in the planning, organisation or operation of a junket for or on behalf of the holder of a gaming licence, where such junket involves

a.
a visit to the casino resort of the holder of the gaming licence, of twenty or more junket visitors, of whom at least one such junket visitor is issued with credit for participation in gaming activities to be engaged in during the junket
b.
transport, food, accommodation and entertainment of an aggregate value of in excess of one hundred thousand dollars, or such higher value as may be prescribed from time to time, calculated on the basis of the retail price normally charged in respect of such goods and services.

2.
A junket operator licence shall authorise, subject to any conditions which may be imposed on such licence, the holder of the licence

a.
to enter into agreements with the holder of a gaming licence authorising the provision of services to the casino, including

i)
arranging, from within or outside The Bahamas, complimentary transport, food, lodging or similar benefits for junket visitors;
ii)
issuing credit to junket visitors for the purposes of participation in any gaming activities authorised by the relevant gaming licence during the junket
iii)
enforcing and collecting gaming debts incurred by a junket visitor during the course of a junket and owing to the holder of the gaming licence
b.
to receive any form of consideration for its services.

3.
A junket representative must submit to the Board an application for approval and a certificate of suitability in the format required by the Board, accompanied by the prescribed non-refundable application fee.

4.
The provisions of

a.
sections 24 to 30 shall apply, where applicable and with the necessary changes, to any application referred to in subsection (1)
b.
sections 24, 25 and 27 to 30 shall apply, with the necessary changes, to any application referred to in subsection (3)

5.
The Board shall not grant an application for approval under subsections (1) or (3) where the person making the application is disqualified to hold a licence under this Act

6.
The Board shall issue a certificate of suitability to any person approved under subsection (3), which shall be

a.
subject to such conditions as may be imposed in respect thereof;
b.
annually renewable, subject to payment of the prescribed annual renewal fee and to the provisions of section 35
c.
subject to the provisions of section 48(10) and (11).

 

 

1.
A gaming house operator licence

a.
shall relate to the operator specified in the licence;
b.
shall be issued only to a company referred to in section 24(b)(i), which is wholly owned by citizens of The Bahamas who are ordinarily resident in The Bahamas
c.
may be applied for only in response to a formal invitation to apply for such licences issued by the Board and advertised in the prescribed manner in the Gazette.

2.
A gaming house operator licence shall authorise the conduct, on premises licensed under section 45, or over the medium of the internet, of

a.
interactive gaming transactions, from a website established, maintained and operated by the licence holder on a server maintained and located in The Bahamas, including betting on the numbers game over the medium of the internet, between the holder of a gaming house operator licence and a domestic player only; provided that

i)
an appropriately secured betting account has been established by the licence holder in the name of the domestic player on a face-to-face basis, in such a manner that the licence holder has first verified, with reference to valid documentary proof, that the account holder is a domestic player and is not otherwise legally precluded from participation in gaming under this Act
ii)
the betting account operated by the domestic player has a credit balance
iii)
no gaming or betting transaction may be entered into which would cause the balance in the betting account of a domestic player to drop below zero;
b.
over-the-counter, account-based betting on the numbers game, between the holder of a gaming house operator licence and a domestic player only; provided that

i)
an appropriately secured betting account has been established by the licence holder in the name of the domestic player on a face-to-face basis, in such a manner that the licence holder has first verified, with reference to valid documentary proof, that the account holder is a domestic player and is not otherwise legally precluded from participation in gaming under this Act
ii)
the betting account operated by the domestic player has a credit balance
iii)
no gaming or betting transaction may be entered into which would cause the balance in the betting account of a domestic player to drop below zero;
c.
over-the-counter cash betting transactions on the numbers game, between the holder of a gaming house operator licence and a domestic player only; provided that the licence holder has first verified, with reference to valid documentary proof, that the player in question is a domestic player and is not otherwise legally precluded from participation in gaming under this Act

 

 

1.
A gaming house premises licence

a.
shall relate to the premises in respect of which it is issued
b.
may be applied for only in response to a formal invitation to apply for such licences issued by the Board and advertised in the prescribed manner in the Gazette

2.
A gaming house premises licence shall authorise the conduct by the holder of a gaming house operator licence of the activities referred to in section 44(2)(a) - (c) on the premises in respect of which the licence has been issued.

3.
All gaming and betting transactions entered into on premises in respect of which a gaming house premises licence has been granted shall be conducted in accordance with the Exchange Control Regulations (Ch.360).

4.
The Minister may make regulations

a.
prescribing the criteria to be taken into account by the Board in considering applications for gaming house premises licences, including

i)
the proximity of the proposed premises to educational institutions, places of religious worship, residential areas and other similarly licensed premises
ii)
any minimum criteria with which an application for a gaming house premises licence shall be required to comply
b.
with respect to the invitation and application process pertaining to gaming house premises licences
c.
prescribing the measures to be taken by the holder of a gaming house operator licence to ensure that the operations conducted on licensed gaming house premises are accessible to domestic players only
d.
prescribing the application fees and annual licensing and monitoring fees payable in respect of gaming house premises licences.

 

 

1.
A gaming house agent licence shall relate to the premises in respect of which it is issued.

2.
A gaming house agent licence shall authorise the conduct of the activities referred to in section 44(2)(d) on the premises in respect of which the licence has been issued.

3.
All gaming and betting transactions entered into on premises in respect of which a gaming house agent licence has been granted shall be conducted in accordance with the Exchange Control Regulations (Ch. 360).

4.
The Minister may make regulations

a.
with respect to any aspect of the agreement entered into between the holder of a gaming house operator licence and the owner of the premises in respect of which a gaming house agent licence is applied for or issued, including the commission payable to such owner;
b.
prescribing the application process in respect of gaming house agent licences;
c.
prescribing the measures to be taken by the holder of a gaming house operator licence to ensure that the operations authorised by a gaming house agent licence are accessible to domestic players only; and
d.
prescribing the application fees and annual licensing and monitoring fees payable in respect of gaming house agent licences.

 

 

1.
Subject to subsection (5)(a), a supplier licence is required by every person who

a.
distributes any gaming device for use in The Bahamas;
b.
in The Bahamas, maintains, alters, repairs or modifies a gaming device, other than in the manner referred to in subsection (3)(a) or (b); or
c.
otherwise directly supplies any gaming device to the holder of a licence issued under this Act, for use in The Bahamas.

2.
A supplier licence shall only be issued to a company.

3.
The provisions of subsection (1) shall not apply to the holder of a gaming licence, proxy gaming licence, mobile gaming licence, restricted interactive gaming licence, gaming house operator licence or to any other person providing services to such a licence holder or otherwise acting on its instructions or behalf, in respect of the routine maintenance, repair or alteration of any gaming device used by the holder of such licence or in respect of the sale of such device by such licence holder in accordance with this Act, provided that, for the purposes of this subsection, routine maintenance, repair or alteration means

a.
any repair, maintenance or alteration that would not affect the manner or Mode of a play or the outcome of a game; or
b.
the conversion or replacement of one approved component with another approved component; or the rebuilding of a previously approved gaming device with approved components.

4.
A supplier licence shall authorise the importation, acquisition, maintenance, repair, alteration, distribution and direct supply, for use in The Bahamas, of the types of gaming devices specified in the licence.

5.
A manufacturer of a gaming device shall not be required to hold a supplier licence by virtue only of having manufactured such device, provided that a supplier licence shall be required by any manufacturer which

a.
manufactures any gaming device within The Bahamas; or
b.
complies with any of the requirements of subsection (1). (6)

6.
Notwithstanding any provision of this Act to the contrary, an applicant for a supplier licence which, on application for such licence and on payment of the prescribed application fee, produces a current, valid licence, certificate or similar approval, authorizing any of the activities required for a supplier licence under this Act, and issued by a regulatory authority situated in Nevada, New Jersey, Mississippi or Singapore, or such other regulatory authority as the Board may recognize for the purposes of this section from time to time, shall not be required to undergo any investigation referred to in this Act for the purposes of its application for such licence, but shall be deemed to qualify for a supplier licence under this Act.

7.
The provisions of sections 24 and 26 to 30 shall apply, with the necessary changes, to an application referred to in subsection (1).

8.
The Board shall not grant an application under subsection (1) where the person making the application is disqualified from holding a licence under this Act.

 

 

1.
A key employee licence is required by every executive director or agent of, or any person in the employ of the holder of any operator licence, other than a junket operator licence issued under this Act ("the principal licence") who may exercise direct control over gaming operations or the activities authorised by the principal licence or such other person, whom the Board may identify, who may exercise control over any premises where gaming is conducted under this Act.

2.
Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections (1) and (3), persons employed in any of the following or substantially similar positions by the holders of the licences referred to in subsection (1) shall be regarded as key employees for the purposes of this section

a.
managers
b.
supervisors
c.
pit bosses
d.
pit clerks
e.
inspectors
f.
surveillance personnel
g.
any other position as may be prescribed or may be considered by the Board to be that of a key employee generally or in relation to any gaming business in particular

3.
For the purposes of this section, direct control over gaming operations or the activities authorised by the principal licence means the express, implied or reasonably incidental authority to supervise, oversee, monitor or otherwise control any activity in respect of gaming operations which, in the opinion of the Board, may reasonably enable the person on whom such authority is conferred

a.
to manipulate or alter the selection of criteria which determine the result of any game on which wagering is accepted;
b.
to engage or participate in cheating, as defined in section 65; or
c.
to misrepresent to any authority the tax liability of the licence holder.

4.
If the Board considers that an employee of any licence holder referred to in subsection (1) is a key employee, it shall serve written notice to that effect upon the licence holder by whom such employee is employed.

5.
The holder of the licence referred to in subsection (4) shall, within thirty days of receipt of a written notice referred to in subsection (4), present to the Board an application in the prescribed form for the licensing of such employee as a key employee or provide adequate proof that such employee is no longer employed by it.

6.
An employee who is subject to application for licensing as a key employee under subsection (4) may make written representations to the Board to reconsider his status within the business concerned, and if the Board thereupon determines that the employee is not a key employee, such employee shall be permitted to withdraw his application.

7.
In determining whether or not an employee is a key employee, the Board shall not be restricted by the job title or designation of an employee, but may consider the extent and impact of the functions and responsibilities of such employee in the gaming environment.

8.
Save as may be provided for in this Act or prescribed, no person required by this Act to hold a key employee licence shall be employed by or assist a licence holder before he has obtained the requisite licence.

9.
Upon application for a key employee licence the Board shall perform a full investigation to determine whether the applicant qualifies for such licence under section 24 and is not disqualified under section 25.

10.
After the issue of a key employee licence

a.
a limited probity investigation shall be performed in respect of the annual application for the renewal of such licence for each of the following two consecutive years; and
b.
a full probity investigation shall be performed in respect of the application for renewal of the licence after every three years.

11.
For the purposes of subsection (10)(a), a limited probity investigation shall require the applicant for the renewal of the relevant licence to submit, in conjunction with its written application for the renewal of the licence, documentary evidence which

a.
provides adequate proof

i).
of the identity of such applicant;
i).
that the applicant has not, at any time during the period of currency of his existing licence, become disqualified to hold such licence by virtue of having been convicted of any criminal offence; and
i).
that the applicant has not been subjected to any disciplinary proceedings instituted by his employer at any time during the period of currency of his existing licence; and
b.
is accompanied by a sworn statement confirming that the applicant is not disqualified under the provisions of section 25(1).

12.
Any person in respect of whom the Board has refused a licence under this section may, by written notice and within thirty days of the refusal of the licence, appeal to the Minister against the refusal of the licence in the manner prescribed.

13.
In determining whether or not an employee is a key employee, the Board shall not be restricted by the job title or designation of an employee, but may consider the extent and impact of the functions and responsibilities of such employee in the gaming environment.

 

 

1.
A gaming employee licence is required by every person, excluding a key employee, who is employed by the holder of a principal licence referred to in section 48, and who is directly involved in the activities performed under the principal licence.

2.
Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections (1) and (3), persons employed in any of the following or substantially similar positions by the holder of an operator licence shall be regarded as gaming employees for the purposes of this section —

a.
cashiers and ticket-sellers;
b.
count room personnel;
c.
dealers and croupiers;
d.
machine technicians;
e.
security personnel; and
f.
such other categories of employee as may be prescribed.

3.
For the purposes of this section, a person shall be deemed to be "directly involved in the activities performed under the principal licence" if such person has, or will have, the express, implied or reasonably incidental authority to perform any activity in respect of the gaming operations of the principal licence holder which, in the opinion of the Board, may reasonably enable the person on whom such authority is conferred —

a.
to manipulate or alter the selection of criteria which determine the result of any game on which wagering is accepted;
b.
to engage or participate in cheating, as defined in section 68; or
c.
to misrepresent to any authority the tax liability of the licence holder.

4.
If the Board is of the opinion that an employee of any licence holder referred to in section 45(1) is a gaming employee, it shall serve written notice to that effect upon the licence holder by whom such employee is employed.

5.
Save as may be provided for in this Act or prescribed, no person required by this Act to hold a gaming employee licence shall be employed by or assist any licence holder before he has obtained the requisite licence.

6.
Upon application for a gaming employee licence the Board shall perform a full investigation to determine whether the applicant qualifies for such licence under section 24 and is not disqualified under section 25.

7.
The provisions of section 48(10) and (11) shall apply, with the necessary changes to the holder of a gaming employee licence.

8.
Any person in respect of whom the Board has refused a licence under this section may, by written notice and within thirty days of the refusal of the licence, appeal to the Minister against the refusal of the licence in the manner prescribed.

 

 

1.
Where an application for an employment licence has been submitted, and the applicant is able to show good cause for the issue of a temporary licence pending the grant or refusal of the licence applied for, the Board may, subject to the provisions of this Act, the payment of the prescribed application fee and such conditions as it may impose, issue a temporary employee licence.

2.
A temporary employee licence shall be valid for such period as the Board may determine.

3.
For the purposes of this section, direct control over gaming operations or the activities authorised by the principal licence means the express, implied or reasonably incidental authority to supervise, oversee, monitor or otherwise control any activity in respect of gaming operations which, in the opinion of the Board, may reasonably enable the person on whom such authority is conferred

a.
to manipulate or alter the selection of criteria which determine the result of any game on which wagering is accepted;
b.
to engage or participate in cheating, as defined in section 65; or
c.
to misrepresent to any authority the tax liability of the licence holder.

4.
If the Board considers that an employee of any licence holder referred to in subsection (1) is a key employee, it shall serve written notice to that effect upon the licence holder by whom such employee is employed.

5.
The holder of the licence referred to in subsection (4) shall, within thirty days of receipt of a written notice referred to in subsection (4), present to the Board an application in the prescribed form for the licensing of such employee as a key employee or provide adequate proof that such employee is no longer employed by it.

6.
An employee who is subject to application for licensing as a key employee under subsection (4) may make written representations to the Board to reconsider his status within the business concerned, and if the Board thereupon determines that the employee is not a key employee, such employee shall be permitted to withdraw his application.

7.
In determining whether or not an employee is a key employee, the Board shall not be restricted by the job title or designation of an employee, but may consider the extent and impact of the functions and responsibilities of such employee in the gaming environment.