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Alderney is the third largest island in the English Channel, known best for their globally recognised gambling licences. They are self-governed but still fall under the British Crown. Since 2000, Alderney Gambling Control Commission issues the Alderney Gambling License, which has quickly become one of the most widely accepted iGaming certificates. All of the casinos holding this license have to pass the highest safety and fairness standards, so if you see Alderney logo in the footer of a gambling site, it's a good indicator that you're dealing with a trustworthy operator. To learn more about what it takes to get, and what it means to have an Alderney Gambling License, read our review to the fullest.
Alderney is a small island located between the UK and France that has been well-known for its liberal laws even many years before iGaming has become a thing. They aren't big, but Alderney Government surely knows how to be business-friendly, offering 0% tax rates to many companies, including all the top online casinos. With regulations like this, it was just a matter of time when this tiny island country would enter the online gambling business. That's exactly what happened in 2000 when Alderney Gambling Control Commission (or GACC in short) was created. They are an independent, non-political organisation with a single purpose, to tightly regulate the gaming market, and make sure casino players are as safe as possible.
Today Alderney Gambling Licence is one of the best-known iGaming certificates, specialised only for online casinos. They are members of both Gaming Regulators European Forum (GREF) and the International Association of Gaming Regulators (IAGR). Every casino brand that wants to prove it's fair and crime-free can apply for this license. Alderney casinos are considered as safe and prestigious institutions because AGCC holds to the highest industry standards, close only to one imposed by the UKGC on UK based casinos.
It's important to point out that in around 20 years of existence, the only situation when AGCC failed to deliver was the case of Full Tilt Poker in 2011. Alderney missed checking all the financial regulations that could prevent the collapse of this poker operator and loss of players deposits. Until this day, that remains the only stain on the AGCC resume, so we believe it's essential for you to know the whole story. But apart from that episode, Alderney has proven to be a highly capable gambling regulator.
As we already mentioned, having an Alderney Gambling License means that online casino will be recognised as safe and reliable, but no one said that getting this certificate would be easy. There are quite a few steps before you can acquire the license. First thing every casino operator should know is that AGCC can issue a license only in the name of the Alderney located company. So before starting the process, casino owner will first have to register a company there. To learn more about how to register an Alderney based company, scroll down and keep reading.
This is a dull process that would most probably be settled by lawyers, but we have made a quick overview so that you can get an idea of what is going on here. Luckily, there are a bunch of useful links on the AGCC site, if you want to learn more about this whole process. In case a casino owner wants to register and Alderney based company, this is what needs to be done:
So as you can see, they are very strict when it comes to the registration of new companies. All this is to ensure that no shady casinos are coming in.
Whether someone will get the Alderney Online Gambling License or not is in the sole discretion of the AGCC and their inspectors. The whole process isn't cheap nor easy, but even if the application is denied, they will always provide a checklist with all the necessary improvements. This is how the process goes:
But the monitoring doesn't end with the approval letter. The AGCC will carefully look at the casino's finances and safety features going forward. For example, every Alderney online casino must always have more cash than the total balance of all registered players, as well as assets at least 25% bigger than the liabilities. Also, the board will request an independent audits from time to time, to ensure that every license holder has everything in place to maintain minors from playing, combat money laundering and guarantee random and fair games. As you can see from this, it's tough to keep up with all demands, but that's the only way to have utterly reliable casino sites.
If you believe AGCC services come cheap, you better think again. One of the biggest downsides of Alderney Gambling License is high costs. But the good thing is that they have come up with the system where charges are directly connected with the casino size. So the operators that generate up to £500,000 a year pay a £35,000 license renewal fee, while the large casinos which do over £30 million annually pay staggering £290,000.
Apart from the renewal costs, there are several other things to be covered, including a £10,000 deposit. Also, the AGCC staff who will work with the casino in the process of getting the License comes with the hourly rate between £65 and £300, depending on expertise. It's clear by now that Alderney Online Gambling License comes with the considerable price tag, but that's how it goes if you want to be one of prestigious Alderney online casinos.
Since the iGaming is such a complex industry, AGCC doesn't provide just one license. Instead, they offer multiple certificates that cover different aspects of the gaming business. In case you want to learn the details about how various licenses work, note that they have provided a neat PowerPoint presentation on their website that can help you better understand the whole process. We'll try to avoid going into too many details here, as the legal stuff may be overwhelming for anybody who doesn't hold a law degree. With that being said, these are just the main types of Alderney Gambling Licenses:
AGCC has a database with a detailed register of all certified casinos. The listings are publicly available, meaning that everything about Alderney casinos is entirely transparent. This is very important because in that way you can always check who stands behind the casino you're playing with. But note that AGCC register is accessible only on a prior appointment, so you'll have to give them a notice before diving into the database.
If you ever think that an Alderney online casino operator has treated you wrong, you can always send a complaint to the AGCC. They will review every request and decided whether there were some misdoings. In case they determine you're right, the casino will bear consequences. Players' wellbeing is one of the core values AGCC stands for, so every inquiry will be taken seriously. However, this doesn't mean you should go to them every time you aren't happy with something. It would be best if you first tried to solve issues directly with the casino, which should be enough in most cases since Alderney Licence demands that every operator has an internal complaints procedure.
In case you aren't thrilled with the casino's verdict, you can send a notice directly to the Alderney Commission. Note that they accept complaints only in written form, so send them a letter or an email, whatever suits you more. We have summarised how the whole process should look like, in case you ever end up in a situation like this.
Safety is one of the main things players look at when choosing an online casino. So it isn't a surprise that AGCC made security one of their top priorities. There is no way an operator will earn an Alderney Gambling License if they don't fulfil the highest safety and fairness standards. This approach is one of the main reasons why players trust AGCC so much. They have proved over the years that there will be zero tolerance towards shady casinos which doesn't offer a 100% fair gaming experience. These are some of the demands every Alderney casino has to satisfy to be licensed: