Is Online Sports Betting Legal In New Zealand?

Online sports betting is a growing global phenomenon that by some estimates, boasts a market value of upwards of 35 billion US dollars.

You’ll find that a quick search on the internet brings up a multitude of online sports betting sites, each vying for your attention with many of them offering a wide range of enticing betting options, sign-up bonuses and promotions.

With so much to choose from, most New Zealand residents who are interested in setting foot into the exciting realm of online sports betting for the first time want to know whether online sports betting is legal or not.

It’s a fair enough question and the answer is quite clear. In New Zealand, the terms of the Gambling Act 2003 state that it is not illegal for someone in New Zealand to participate in gambling over the internet, provided that the website has its servers based overseas. To put it plainly, New Zealand players are not at risk of being prosecuted under the local laws if they play at online casinos or sports betting sites which are based and operated abroad.

Who Regulates The Industry In New Zealand?

The New Zealand Racing Board (NZRB) is responsible for the control and regulation of all racing and sports betting activities in New Zealand. All sports betting services are operated under a division of the board, called the Totalisator Agency Board, commonly referred to as TAB.

The board was established in 2003 under the Racing Act to administer all wagers, from horseracing and greyhounds, to placing a bet on your favourite European soccer team or proud local rugby favourites, the All Blacks. The New Zealand Racing Board oversees a growing number of domestic and international sporting events.

What About Online Betting Sites Based In New Zealand?

With the exclusion of online sports bets made through TAB, which is a division of the industry regulatory body, New Zealand players are prohibited from placing bets at online sports betting sites that are hosted within New Zealand itself, as these sites are not licenced or regulated.

If you want to make a wager on the All Blacks for the next Rugby Championship and would like to venture further afield into the world of international online rugby betting, you best place your bet on an online sports betting site that has its servers running from outside the borders of New Zealand.

Are Winnings Exempt From Tax?

So you’ve tried your hand at online sports betting and may have already racked up some winnings- good job! Now you’re probably wondering whether the New Zealand Inland Revenue has any claim to a portion of your winnings, right?

To date, there have been no guidelines issued by the New Zealand Inland Revenue that relate specifically to winnings from online gambling. Keep in mind that international online sports betting sites and sportsbooks fall into the same category as online casinos – so the short answer is that all winnings and profits from online sports betting are not regarded as taxable income.