There are new changes to the NSW Betting and Racing Act 1998, from 28 May 2018, it will be unlawful to advertise any offer which contains an inducement to any person located in New South Wales to participate in any gambling activity.

It will no longer be adequate for such advertising of such inducements to contain an “Excludes NSW” type disclaimer.

NSW Liquor and Gaming, all wagering operators and their third party syndicated advertising partners / affiliates will be required to geo-block people located in NSW (according to their internet protocol (IP) address) from accessing or viewing any gambling advertisement which contains an inducement to gamble.

The new legislation include promotions such as those offered by most betting sites, including sign up bonuses such as your first deposit being matched with bonus bets, or a multiple of your deposit, such as deposit $50 , get $150 in bonus bets. Also to go are promotions where the bet wagered on any Australian thoroughbred race run would be awarded  a $50 bonus bet if the punter’s selected runner comes second or third.

The ban would also apply to sports betting promotions, such as those offering a bonus bet of up to $50  if your NRL or AFL selection leads by a certain number points or more at any time but loses the match.

Any advertisements on media such as television, radio, newspaper or online that can be viewed by a person located in NSW will not be allowed.

These bonus bet promotions are popular amongst Australian punters, but will be made illegal by the NSW Government and are a step closer to having this kind of advertising ban apply to all of Australia.

The betting industry and media parties believe the NSW legislature will ultimately means not permitting advertising any promotions in any format to any of the states in case the offer was seen by those in NSW .

The NSW Government is taking these measures to stop bonus bet promotions offered by betting sites, that include inducement to a punter opening an account or placing a wager. The government is concerned by the way that betting sites operators have operated in NSW and has implemented strict legislation to protect those who are currently experiencing, or at risk of experiencing, gambling related harms.   Not only would the betting corporations be in the sites of the legislation but directors and senior managers could be liable for offences committed, with the threat of significant fines. Directors of corporate betting sites could be hit with increased government penalties which have increased from $5500 to $55,000 per offence.

Racing Authorities around Australia are concerned that this step taken by the NSW Government will have a negative effect on the value of their media rights. The industry will suffer if betting companies are restricted in their ability to attract new customers.