Rules of Gambling Online in Ontario

Ontario is Canada’s only province which has legalized regulated online gambling. Overseen by the Alcohol and Gambling Commission of Ontario (AGCO), the iGaming industry in the province has quickly begun to grow, and is already proving financially productive.

Not only is it financially productive, however, it is also beneficial to the Canadian players. Rather than playing at suspicious and unregulated black market websites, gamblers from Ontario can now visit regulated and safe gambling websites, and play their favourite games.

Ontario’s Laws

Of course, there are laws and regulations that the AGCO, as well as the province of Ontario have put into place. For one, people who join these websites must be of a legal gambling age, which in Ontario is around 19-years-old. This, rather basic, law serves to prevent underage gambling and the development of problem gambling among Canadian players.

It is also imperative that Ontario players visit websites that have been licensed and are being regulated by the AGCO. The AGCO does an incredible job of ensuring that websites are safe and reliable. The casinos they license tend to offer generous bonuses, so, if you are looking for a free signup bonus no deposit casino, you are bound to find something.

Of course, the same laws largely apply to online sportsbooks, which also fall under the jurisdiction of the Alcohol and Gambling Commission of Ontario. Sports are a big part of Canadian culture and society, and betting on them is a key aspect of that. The AGCO licenses bookies, as well as online casinos, so there is something for everyone in the province’s iGaming scene.

Is Legalizing iGaming a Positive?

Many people are opposed to the idea of legalizing online gambling. However, we firmly believe that legalizing iGaming is an overall net positive. For those who disagree, or are on the fence, let us share our main arguments for why a legal online gambling industry is, overall, a positive.

  • Safety

One of the big arguments in favour of a legal iGaming industry is that online casinos are safer when they are legal. As is the case with alcohol or cigarettes, people will gamble no matter whether it is legal or not. We’ve seen prohibition doesn’t work. And while you could release social casinos, nicotine patches or non-alcoholic gins, there will always be those who want the real deal.

Therefore, isn’t it better that the people who want to engage with the hobby do it in a safe environment? Unregulated online casinos are not only potential scams, but they are also a hot bed of cybercrime. They lack any sort of proper protection for their customers, which often results in stolen identities or phishing attacks.

  • Economic Benefit

If the safety of the players doesn’t concern you, perhaps the economic benefit of a legal online casino industry will. Indeed, online gambling significantly contributes to the national (or in this case provincial) economy. In 2021, when online gambling was first legalizing in Ontario, the province collected more than CA$1.2 billion in national tax.

It doesn’t just end there. The iGaming industry’s legalization also opens up job opportunities. According to research done during the early 2020s, online casinos and sportsbooks opened up 12,000 jobs, greatly boosting the employment options for Ontario residents. The best part is that this is not minimum-wage work, as the iGaming industry tends to pay more on average for similar positions in other industries.

Online Gambling in Canada

As for the rest of Canada, online casinos remain illegal. However, the laws are complicated. While there is no licensing company outside of Ontario that works with online casinos, all that means is that gambling websites are not allowed to operate from within the country. Canadians are still free to play at offshore websites, which are potentially safe.

In order to determine whether an offshore casino is safe, one only needs to look for a license, and determine whether the casino is being regulated. Luckily, in 2024, it is easier to do this than ever. You just need to look up a review of the site, done by a professional casino reviewer. They will share all the details you need about a certain online casino, including the safety concerns that you might have.



About Joel Levy 2575 Articles
Editor-In-Chief at Toronto Guardian. Photographer and Writer for Toronto Guardian and Joel Levy Photography