German poker regulation

This post is part of a series about European Poker Regulation

Poker regulation in Germany is underway and there is reason to be excited! Although poker and other forms of gambling fall under the laws created by the separate German states, something that would indicate a long and probably very disjointed process, gambling in Germany is considered important enough that the states have combined their efforts in passing legislation. As with some of the other countries we’ve covered already, Germany is in fact a member of the European Union, and can count on the European Commission’s top officials to harass them into a free gambling economy in tune with the European Union’s mantra of free trade. The situation in early 2016 does look a bit confusing but recent cases coming to German courts could create the push the country needs to finally regulate and tax poker in Germany

German poker history

Poker has a long standing history in Germany, with many of the world’s top player’s coming from the central European powerhouse. Yet, for the majority of the past few decades, German officials have tried their best to play a game of cat and mouse with private bodies that attempted to establish a foothold in the local Market. Current legal forms of betting in Germany are:

  • Landbased casinos (Including poker)
  • Sports Betting – both online and landbased
  • Slot machine betting –landbased only
  • Lottery – run only by the state

Profitable poker in Germany

All signs are pointing towards a future with legal poker in Germany, for now players will continue to play on grey sites or go to land based casinos that offer some poker play. There will surely be regulation in the future of this country, and there are two scenarios we see:
Negative future for poker in Germany
The German states regulate and ring-fence poker independently in an attempt to hold on to profit, rooms do not have enough liquidity to offer play
Bright future for poker in Germany
German regulators elect to allow German players to play abroad on .com brands, taxing the operators who find roundabout ways to return their profit, allowing German players to fill up the global poker playerpool

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