Brazil Passes Legislation Allowing Sports Betting and Online Gambling

Brazil is set to launch a federal marketplace for sports wagering and online casino games after the approval of legislation PL3626/23 by the Chamber of Deputies. The bill, which had been previously sent back by the Senate due to debates over online casino games, has now been validated and will be sent to President Lula da Silva for federal signature.

The Senate had initially excluded online casino modalities, requiring lawmakers to consider over 100 modifications to the bill’s text. However, during the last voting session, the Chamber of Deputies retained the provision for online games, with a significant majority of lawmakers voting in favor of its inclusion.

The tax and fiscal structures suggested by the Senate’s Economic Affairs Commission (CAE) have also been kept, with operators holding a license in the Brazilian federal market required to pay a 12% tax, while players’ rewards will be subject to a 15% tax. Additionally, a percentage of the collected revenues will be allocated to social security, tourism, and sports sectors.

To obtain a federal license, operators are required to pay BRL 30m, or approximately €5.5m and the license will be valid for five years. Domestic and foreign businesses seeking to operate in the market must establish a permanent presence in the country and have a member from Brazil on their Board who owns a minimum of 20% of the share capital.

Prior to the legislation’s approval, 134 firms had expressed their interest in joining Brazil’s pending online gambling market.

The Ministry of Finance will oversee the federal sports wagering market and set up a dedicated watchdog for consumer protections, standards, and conduct. The bill also includes obligations on sports integrity and advertising, prohibiting anyone under 18, those with influence on gambling platforms or sporting events, and key sports personnel from participating in wagering activities.

With the formal debut of the federal marketplace for sports wagering and online casino games, Brazil is entering a new era in the gambling industry, with strict regulations in place to ensure responsible gambling and protect the integrity of sports.