Brazil Ordinance Gives Nod To Live Casino Games

February 27, 2024
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Brazil’s new Prize and Betting Secretariat has published its first regulatory ordinance to govern the accreditation of independent test labs to certify betting platforms, online casino games and live dealer studios.
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Brazil’s new Prize and Betting Secretariat has published its first regulatory ordinance to govern the accreditation of independent test labs to certify betting platforms, online casino games and live dealer studios.

Perhaps the most notable provision in the ordinance, published on Monday (February 26), is the establishment of a certification process for live casino gaming, indicating that live games should be allowed under December's Law 14.790.

Whether live gaming would be included under Brazilian regulation had been a question mark since online casino games were hastily added to the sports-betting legislation last September.

The approved text of the law allows for fixed-odds betting on both sports and “virtual online gaming events” in which “the result is determined by the outcome of a random future event, based on a random generator of numbers, symbols, figures or objects”.

That definition resulted in uncertainty for live casino games, which are not determined by a random number generator but instead by the actions of a live dealer, with the outcome streamed to players via the online casino platform.

The ordinance on testing labs and certifications is still not the final say on the matter, but the inclusion of a specific definition of live game studios in the regulation is an indication that live casino should be allowed after all.

“The ordinance foresees live games, which is definitely something good,” said Rafael Marchetti Marcondes, legal director for Brazilian betting association IBJR and chief legal officer for  fantasy sports operator Rei do Pitaco.

“But this fact does not mean that every live game will be accepted. According to the last statements of [former Ministry of Finance special advisor Jose Francisco] Manssur, it means only that live games with fixed-odds will be allowed. Nothing further than this.”

In light of Manssur’s recent departure from the Ministry of Finance, there is also some question as to whether or not this ordinance will be subject to revision once a head of the new secretariat is appointed.

The ordinance was signed by deputy secretary Simone Aparecida Vincentini and, “depending on who will assume Manssur's position, she may not remain in the Ministry of Finance, so we cannot assure that at least some of the topics contemplated in the ordinance may be reanalyzed by the new regulator”, said Marchetti Marcondes.

Furthermore, the ordinance does not further define either a "fixed-odds bet" or "online gaming" beyond those definitions that were already established by Law 14.790.

Marchetti Marcondes noted that “the ordinance seems to delegate the attribution of saying what it is a fixed-odd game to the labs, leaving the Ministry of Finance free of this burden”. 

On the certification side, the ordinance specifies that independent testing labs need to apply to the secretariat for official recognition as certifying entities. 

Approved certification bodies will be able to test and certify betting systems, online games and live gaming studios, as well as sportsbook platforms, remote gaming servers and platform integrations.

A live gaming studio is defined in the ordinance as “a physical environment that uses live video transmission technology to deliver live online games to a remote gaming device integrated into the betting system that allows the bettor to participate in live games, interact with game attendants and other bettors”.

There is no limit on the number of independent bodies that can be accredited, although they must be able to demonstrate experience and meet various registration criteria, including having their own ISO certifications.

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