An Overview of Gambling Legislation in the Philippines

Gambling Laws in the Philippines

Gambling in the Philippines is regulated by two jurisdictions, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) and the Cagayan Special Economic Zone.  Both regulate land-based gaming and PAGCOR regulates online gaming sites as well.

Even though the online sites are regulated by PAGCOR, sites that operate out of this area they are not allowed to offer online gaming services to Filipino players.  They can offer their services to players outside the Philippines.

Legality of Online Casinos

It is legal to operate an online casino within the Philippines, but it is illegal to offer these services to Filipino players if the site is based in the borders of the Philippines.  Filipino players are allowed to access legal online casino sites located offshore.

A court case in 2012 verifies that players are allowed to place bets online.  Filipino players can enjoy casino games online at various sites as long as they are legal, regulated and outside the Philippines.

It is also legal for players to use mobile casino sites if they are licensed, regulated and offshore.

There are many casinos that will accept Filipino players, but they should note that just because a site says they accept Filipino players does not mean it is a legal site and players should do their due diligence and find out before signing up.

Players should ensure that they check the site carefully to make sure that it complies with industry standards and is properly licensed.  Many sites will be helpful in giving players a list of online casinos that are safe and legal to play at.

A good list will include the legality of the casino, compliance certification, whether their software is of a good standard, good security and their reputation in the casino industry.

When operating an online casino in the borders of the Philippines the laws are strict.  Even though these sites can offer casino gambling to players outside of the Philippines, the law is very clear regarding locally licensed sites offering their services to Filipinos.

Filipinos may however place bets online and so they are legally allowed to play casino games online and place bets.

Minimum Age for Gambling

Gambling in the Philippines is only open to those 21 years or older.  This law is has been put into place to stop underage casino gambling.

Anyone who does not abide by this law will be prosecuted.  Even though Filipinos are able to play casino games offshore, or enjoy NZ sports betting, the minimum age remains 21.

Even if an online casino allows 18 year olds to gamble a Filipino will still only be able to play or bet until they are 21.  The law of the Philippines trumps the policies of the online casino sites.

Other forms of legal online gambling for Filipinos include legal poker sites as well as sports betting sites and the same laws apply to these as offshore sites and sportsbooks.  These are legal as long as they are not operated in the Philippines.