Updated: November 23, 2020

Malta Gaming Authority - Malta Casinos

In order to receive a license from the Malta Gaming Authority, an online casino must comply with all the rules and regulations that MGA has. The aim with this license is to protect the casino players and to improve the online casino industry.

They want to have fair rules that improve the security and that makes online casino more fun and safe at the same time. This is the only casino license that mentions the word “fun” in their aim. This is the most common casino license in Europe.

As the world of online gaming continues to expand, there is a growing importance on the licensing of casino sites. More casinos are popping up and UK players should pay attention to where the site is licensed. One of the top jurisdictions is the Malta Gaming Authority.

The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) is the body that awards licences to Malta-licensed casinos. These casinos have to adhere to strict rules and regulations regarding the way they operate, which makes them very popular with players. Failure to do so means their licences can be revoked.

• MGA is one of the stricter jurisdictions

• Malta-licensed casinos offer safe, secure gaming

There are a number of factors that make the Malta Gaming Authority casinos so sought after. These include the software used, the game selection available and the protection of players, all of which we will discuss in detail throughout this Malta online casino guide.

malta-casinos

Top Features of Malta Casinos

Most of the casino’s Malta licences all have a number of things in common. For instance, they take the protection of players very seriously. This is a top feature on these sites and ensures casinos undergo a full inspection and verification before being accepted.

While player protection is important, there are a number of other factors that make Malta online casinos great places to play at. For instance, the licence ensures that the site is user-friendly, incorporating numerous languages as well as offering top-level customer support.

• MGA casinos take player protection seriously

• User-friendly sites usually available in multiple languages

• Cater to player needs for customer support

How to Get an MGA Casino Licence

Getting an MGA licence is harder than most of the other licences because there are strict processes to be followed. For instance, all applicants need to follow specific steps, some of which are based on choosing the exact licence they require for their operation.

Once the type of licence has been selected, the applicant will need to submit all the relevant paperwork – this will vary depending on the licence. The documentation will undergo several audits to ensure that all of the requirements are met before it’s awarded.

How can I see if a casino holds an MGA license?

Usually it is displayed in the operator site footer. You can also check in the MGA registry.

Can I play from everywhere with a MGA license?

Some countries will have national licenses that overrides the MGA license.

Is a Malta gaming license safe?

Yes, it is a EU license with a lot of rules and restrictions when it comes to responsible gaming and much more.

Types of Licences

The MGA licences are categorised into four classes. Class 1 is for generic casino sites, Class 2 is for sites that include sports betting options. Class 3 is for peer-to-peer, exchange betting and poker sites. Class 4 licences are for software providers rather than sites.

Licence Requirements

There are numerous requirements an applicant must fulfil. For instance, there’s an assessment of the people managing the business as well as the business itself. There’s also a system and compliance review to ensure everything about the company is above board, meaning the processing time is lengthy.

Are Malta-Licensed Casinos Safe?

The biggest question that always pops up about online gaming venues is whether they are safe. As we have already touched upon, safety and security are some of the standout features of MGA licensed casinos, simply due to the licensing requirements in place.

Therefore, Malta-licensed casinos already have a leg up over their competitors as it’s already assumed that just by holding this licence, the casino is secure. In addition to this, any casino holding an MGA licence undergoes regular checks to ensure they are complying with rules like:

• Player safety

• Anti-money laundering

• Responsible gaming

Rules and Regulations – Gamstop Self Exclusion Available?

In order to be granted a Maltese MGA license, the online casino have to have an age verification process. To be able to play online casino you must be at least 18 years of age. In some countries in Europe however, this age is set to 21. Another important rule is that the casino must have an identity verification process as well.

To verify an identity the casino has to receive a copy of the drivers’ license, passport or national ID card. This is to prove that the player is over the legal gambling age and also to ensure that the account has been opened in the correct name.

There have been discussions about self-exclusion programs for Malta casinos, but until today there is no centralised system in place for players to ban themselves, similar to Gamstop. It is not necessary for Malta Casinos to be listed on Gamstop. But since the authority cooperate with the UKGC, it many times the case. However, there are still many casino sites and betting sites not listed on Gamstop available for UK players through Malta casinos.

Again, to prevent players from opening fake accounts the player has to provide documents that prove their identity, like bank statements and utility bills. If a player pays with a credit or debit card, a scanned copy of the card must be sent to the casino. The MGA license is recognized to be the best casino license in Europe. Even if your country is unregulated, you can play at online casinos that have an MGA license.

Responsible Gaming

One of the biggest areas that the MGA promotes is that of responsible gaming. Most Maltese-licensed casinos will have a seal from a third-party organisation that deals with responsible gaming. These efforts are put in place to help players enjoy their time online.

While this is in effect, the MGA does not enforce these quite as much as other gaming jurisdictions such as the UKGC. For instance, MGA casinos are not registered with Gamstop. In the UK, this would mean that the casino could have its licence suspended.

Complaining about Malta Casinos

One of the best things about this jurisdiction is the ability for players to make direct complaints about a casino to the MGA. This means that any complaint will go straight to them, and the Authority can then take the time to resolve it.

However, going straight to the MGA does have a downside, as it means there is often a lengthy time period to get through before the process is completed. But all complaints are always dealt with, and the process to lodge one is easy:

• Go to the MGA website

• Click on support

• Choose online gaming support

• Fill out the form, sending proof via screenshots if necessary

• Submit

Software and Games at Malta Casinos

Another top-level feature of MGA casinos is that they utilise some of the best software in the industry. As software providers are also licensed by this jurisdiction, players can rest assured that any software licensed by them is also of top quality.

Not all software providers get a licence, which is why fewer games are found on MGA sites. Only those brands that are reputable and undergo regular auditing will gain a Malta licence, meaning players can be sure that game fairness and quality is the best it can be.

Slot games

Slot games are one of the most commonly found games at any Malta casino. These games are often provided by the likes of Microgaming, NetEnt and Play’n GO, to name but a few of the top suppliers. Players at MGA casinos can, therefore, expect the very best.

Other casino games

The use of top providers extends into other areas of the game selection too. These casinos usually feature well-rounded collections with numerous live games (Evolution Gaming is another top provider licensed with Malta), virtual table games and even fully fledged poker rooms online.

Pros and Cons of Malta Casinos

If it wasn’t already obvious, there are many pros to Malta-licensed casinos. As well as the legal side of things, these sites are recognised both inside and outside the EU. The licence is a vote of confidence within the gaming world and their rules are always updated.

There are some cons to Malta online casinos, though. The biggest one is that these casinos are not accepted within the UK. Unlike other jurisdictions, they also have fewer rules for the protection of vulnerable players, which can pose an issue, especially within the UK.

Today there is nothing similar to Gamstop or Gamban for the Maltese license. However, many countries that work on a Maltese casino license will offer national programs similar to this.

Some of the pros of Malta casinos are the following:

  • Play anywhere in Europe and the World that is included in the license.
  • Use several different payment methods including credit cards and e-wallets.
  • Many game providers such as NetEnt, Microgaming and Red Tiger included in most licenses.

License Registration Process

The Malta Gaming Authority is very focused on protecting casino players. Players are required to provide the correct details at signup and never to use invalid or fraudulent details.

The player has to provide the correct information such as their name, date of birth and address. The casino site must check that this information is correct via the KYC-process. Once this is done, the player can start playing at the online casino.

How the casino implements this is totally up to them. Generally, a player can sign-up, deposit, and bet without completing the KYC-process. A player can however only withdraw any money from the casino after the KYC-process is complete. This is really good because it discourages fraud and incorrect details.

Different types of Casino Licenses

The MGA offers four different types of licenses:

Class 1 License

A remote gaming licence whereby operators manage their own risk on repetitive games.

Class 2 License

A remote betting licence whereby operators manage their own risk on events based on a matchbook

Class 3 License

A licence to promote remote gaming in or from Malta whereby operators can take a commission from promoting games.

Class 4 License

A licence to host and manage remote gaming operators.

Responsible Gambling

MGA is very interested in responsible gaming. Their aim is to protect casino players and to improve the iGaming industry in general. If players have complaints about a specific casino they can contact MGA to get help. You will see all of their contact information at their website.

Responsible gaming is all about protecting the players and this can be done in many different ways. One very important regulation is that all casinos must offer deposit, bet and a loss limit. Players with gambling problems can thereby protect themselves from themselves.

These limits can be set during a specific time frame. A player can also choose how many hours per day/week/month that the player can play at online casinos. Furthermore, a player can also self-exclude themselves from all gambling sites that have an MGA license.

The MGA should only be contacted by casino players when they believe that an online casino is in breach of their license. If you have a dispute with a casino about payouts, bonuses or anything else you should contact the casino in question first.

If you don’t get help with this, contact MGA and they will help you. All in all, this is perhaps the best casino license in Europe. If you play at an online casino with this license you can feel totally safe and secure.

Final Thoughts on Malta Casinos

Online casinos licensed with the MGA have a lot going for them. These sites are automatically viewed as being safe and secure simply by holding their licence. As these licences require strict regulation, this shows the casino is upholding these standards, making them worthy of players’ consideration.

These sites also offer nothing but the best in terms of software, although this does mean their game range isn’t as extensive as that of other jurisdictions. Finally, these Malta-licensed casinos have the option to complain and be heard so players can get their problems resolved.