Poker and the Law in the UK
Poker is a card game involving chance and skill and is therefore classed as gaming under the Gaming Act 1968 (the "Act"). This Act governs gaming in the UK. Any violation of the Act could result in every person involved in the organisation of the offending game being found guilty of an offence. As such, each individual could be found liable on summary conviction and face imprisonment and/or a fine.
NB: The law relating to poker could undergo a radical change depending on the final outcome of the Gutshot case. Despite having kept the police fully informed of their activities, the Gutshot club, a private poker club based in London, was charged with contravention of the Act. The bizarre conclusion of the court, that poker is a game of chance, is being appealed by Gutshot.
Click here if you are simply looking for a set of poker rules, not law of the land.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Is it legal to play poker for money with your friends in your home?
- Is it legal to play poker for money in your home and allow anyone, not just friends, to play?
- Is it legal to play poker in a pub, but not for money.
- Is it legal to play poker in a private members club, such as a rugby club, but not for money?
- Is it legal to play poker, for money in a pub?
- Is it legal to play poker, for money, in a private room in a pub (not open to the general public)?
- Is it legal to play poker, for money in a private members club, such as a rugby club, if you are not charged for the room?
- Is it legal to play poker, for money in a private members club, such as a rugby club, if you are charged for the room?
- Is it legal to play poker for money in a private club if you advertise for members/players?
- The club is not allowed to make a profit from the game: does that mean charging for the provision of the room?
- Could you charge for entry if an equal values worth of prizes are given to the players at the end of the evening?
- Is it ever legal to advertise for players to come to a real-money game?
- Is it ever legal to advertise for players to come to a not-for-money game?
Please note, the information contained on this page is intended to provide a general guide to the law relating to poker as it applies in England and Wales.
It should not be relied upon as an authoritative statement of the law or as a source of legal advice. If you think you have a legal problem, you should obtain advice from a lawyer or adviser.
Take That Ltd will not be held liable for any loss, damage or inconvenience howsoever arising nor as a consequence of any use or the inability to use any of the information contained on this site. Visitors who use this website and rely on any information do so entirely at their own risk.
Take That Ltd also takes no responsibility for the contents of linked websites and as such any links should not be taken as an endorsement of any kind.