German sports betting dispute goes to EU Court

The suit over sports betting in the Federal Republic of Germany has now been called in the European Court in Luxembourg. The judge must consider clarifying the question of whether the force in Germany’s state monopoly on sports betting is in accordance with the EU law.

A judgment, however, can be expected no sooner than 2010. Private betting shop operators from several states have started lawsuit in Germany, because they are forbidden to conduct bets from other EU countries with reference to the court’s monopoly right. Thus, for example, this prohibits a company based in Gibraltar to offer bets in Germany via the Internet.

After the State Treaty of 2008 gambling can be allowed only when offered by the state lottery companies. The exceptions in this case are – to make bettings on horse racing, slot machines and casinos. The goal was to curb gambling addiction by making gambling nationalized. Plaintiffs seem thereby to be put at a disadvantage, because they believe that betting on horse racing and gambling at the slot machines have a much higher potential for addiction than sports such as football betting.

In addition this comes to upset the plaintiffs that state that lottery companies do advertising for betting, despite the fact that the contract served as just an excessive incentive ever.

Clarification on the part of the private gaming providers was eagerly awaited, since the 2010 World Cup in South Africa is a large and strong sales event still pending.