New Italian Sports Betting Rules Finally Coming?

September 8, 2022 | Sports Betting

By: Giulio Coraggio

MILAN, Italy (September 4, 2022) — New Italian sports betting regulations on palpable errors and other matters are expected to be finally adopted after considerable delays. 

New Italian sports betting regulations dealing with palpable errors and the cash-out functionality are expected to be finally approved after over four years of delay.

There is no operator in the betting market that has not suffered at least once a palpable error. This type of mistake might be due to either manual or technical errors. In both scenarios, players are ready with their “spiders” to identify and take advantage of the error.

Palpable errors in the Italian gaming market

I had covered the issue already in the past. There is a “famous” bulletin circular of the Italian gaming authority which provides that palpable errors are part of the “business risk” of operators. Therefore bets have to be paid. This bulletin circular has become so famous that players are more than ready to attach it to their communications once a palpable error occurs.

The result of the above is that while on .COM websites, there isn’t much fishing for palpable errors since bets are always canceled in this case; this has become quite a profitable business in the Italian market.

Indeed, then operators have to end up in a situation where the gambling authority is pushing for the immediate payment of bets, with players contacting the regulator daily to put pressure on them.

Shall palpable errors be paid?

I had discussed over four years ago about new Italian sports betting law entrusting the gaming authority to decide on disputes relating to palpable errors. This solution would have been a significant step ahead since the cost and length of a court proceeding usually dissuade operators from challenging the payment of palpable errors and push them to find at least a settlement agreement. 

This route is not meant to be easy to pursue, and actually, it is likely to be complicated, with the regulator insisting on the enforcement of gaming rules, despite the clear position of the courts. But the above is the best available option.

In the meantime, Italian courts supported the operators’ position, providing that civil law rules on contractual errors prevail on gaming regulating on palpable errors. The consequence of the above is that if an error took place and

  • it was recognizable by the player and
  • the player took advantage of it,

this bet shall be canceled with the amount bet returned to the relevant players.

The applicability of the cash-out functionality extended by new Italian sports betting rules

The cash-out functionality allows players to split the realized profit on a bet at a given time and exit the market. Such functionality has been possible only under Italian betting exchange regulations. However, the regulatory change is expected to extend its applicability to fixed odds sports betting.

This new feature is expected to increase interest in fixed odds sports betting that had not experienced any relevant change since the offering was opened to any event/bet with the so-called “palinesto complementare”.

Author: Giulio Coraggio is the location head of the Italian Intellectual Property & Technology department and the global co-head of the IoT and Gaming and Gambling groups at the world-leading law firm DLA Piper. IoT and artificial intelligence influencer and FinTech and blockchain expert, finding solutions to what’s next for our client’s success.

SOURCE: GamingTechLaw / DLA Piper.

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