Single-Event Sports Betting is Now Legal in Canada

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Canada’s Senate approved Bill C-218 in June 2021. This bill is also called the Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act.  The bill makes it legal to operate single-even sports betting offerings in the country. However, this will take effect once royal assent is received. 

This bill garnered support from several politicians from different parties. The vote tally is 57-20 with a majority favouring the bill. This marks an achievement for Kevin Waugh, the person who sponsored the bill as a member of the parliament. 

This bill has seen its own battles. This was the third attempt to legalize single-event sports betting in the country. The first time it was introduced, it was rivalled by another bill, the C-13, which was backed by the government. The C-13 bill was introduced by the Minister of Justice, David Lametti. 

What Is Single-Event Betting?  

A single bet is a type of bet where you are predicting a single outcome of an event. For example, you will be on the outcome of one boxing match. Let us say that the match is Pacquiao vs Spencer. If you bet on Pacquiao and he wins, the bookmaker pays you. If Pacquiao loses, the bookmaker keeps your bet, and you get nothing. Many players prefer this kind of betting because it is easy to understand. You are only betting on a single outcome, not many. 

A single bet is not straightforward in terms of winnings. When people gamble amongst themselves, they typically agree on a 1:1 payout. For example, let us say that we are friends, and I am betting that Pacquiao will win. I bet $100, and you take Spencer’s side. In this case, the pot is $200—$100 from me and $100 from you. If Pacquiao wins, I keep the $200, which gives me a profit of $100. 

Bookmakers for single-event games do not work this way. There are odds. For example, let us say that the odds are 2:1 in favour of Pacquiao. This means that you will be paid twice your bet. If you wager $10 for Pacquiao and he wins, the bookmaker will give you back $10, and then give you $20 for your winnings. That is what it means for 2:1 odds. On the other hand, it is possible that the odds are 1:2 for Pacquiao. In this case, you have to wager $20 and if Pacquiao wins, you get back $20, and then another $10 for your winnings.   

Single-event betting is not limited to who the winner is. There are many variants. For example, you can bet that Pacquiao will win within the first five rounds. If he does, then you win. If he doesn’t, then the bookmaker will keep your bet. If Pacquiao wins in the sixth round, you also lose. 

As you can see, this betting system is not like what you see in free slots no download. If you think about it, the bookmaker really is in control here. He can decide the odds of the betting system and still end up raking in profits. 

Canada’s Bill C-218 Got Support 

A bill like this will not have come to fruition if there is no backing from businesses and other organizations. For this specific bill, the North American sports leagues have been at the forefront of urging the Canadian government to make it legal to bet on single-event outcomes. 

Back in 2020, five commissioners sent a joint statement to the government. These are: 

  • NBA 
  • NHL 
  • MLB 
  • MLS 
  • CFL 

The joint statement urged the federal government to support the amendment to allow betting on single sports events. The commissioners recognize that while single-event sports betting is illegal, it is already happening in the country. What they wanted was a legal framework that would make consumers shift from underground betting systems to legitimate ones. 

What Lies ahead in the Future 

One section of the bill that got the attention of many is the lottery scheme. In the section, it stipulates that sports betting for single events are not part of the lottery. As of this time, it is legal for a provincial government to run and regulate the lottery. Since single-event sports betting is not part of the definition of a lottery, no one can do it. 

If the bill finally gets approved and gets into effect, both online and physical sports betting will now be legal for single events. Taxes will be paid, and Canadians will have their own operations. Players no longer have to go to foreign sites to bet. For as long as single-event betting is illegal, Canadians will bet on US or UK sites. 

Approving this bill also entails that consumers will receive protection. There will be better regulations for gambling facilities, and the black market will finally go away. We can also expect more taxable income that can grow the country’s economy. We can also expect a system to support problem gamblers. This bill will prevent money-launderers from continuing their enterprises and then help people who are going through gambling problems. 

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