D.C. Requires Sports Wagering Operators and Retailers to Be Licensed and Bonded

Published: May 2, 2019
dc sports wagering


In recent months, lawmakers in Washington, D.C. introduced amendments to the gambling rules in the state. On May 2, 2019, Act A22-0594 becomes law and alters the Law to Legalize Lotteries, Daily Numbers Games, and Bingo and Raffles for 17 Charitable Purposes in the District of Columbia.

The new law is called the Sports Wagering Lottery Amendment Act of 2018. It brings a major change, as it allows sports wagering to be conducted in the District of Columbia. It permits both retail and online sports gambling. Additionally, it sets specific regulations about how such activities can be carried out. Sports wagering operators and retailers have to obtain a state license and provide a surety bond as part of the procedure that allows them to operate in D.C.

The act also amends the controlling body, which previously was called the District of Columbia Lottery and Charitable Games Control Board, to be named the Office of Lottery and Gaming.

You can find further details about the new licensing rules in the sections below.

The licensing rules set in Act A22-0594

The Office of Lottery and Gaming will oversee the sports wagering activities in Washington, D.C. If you want to become licensed with the Office, you will need to satisfy a list of requirements that ensure you are suitable to conduct such operations.

There are four license types, which are: operator, management services provider, supplier, and occupational. The Office can also provide licensing for sports wagering retailers.

The criteria that license holders have to satisfy include:

  • Documents for the facilities used for wagering
  • Background checks
  • Financial activities report
  • Personal information about owners and other key personnel
  • Payment of application and license fees

Applicants who want to obtain a license as an operator or retailer, also have to provide a surety bond. It is a safety mechanism that ensures you will comply with all applicable state rules in your activities as a sports wagering licensee. In case you transgress from your obligations under the law, the bond can provide financial compensation to harmed parties.

Obtaining a surety bond

dc sports wagering

The surety bond requirement is a typical criterion that many types of professionals have to fulfill in order to obtain a state license across the U.S. In essence, it represents an additional layer of protection for the state and for your customers, guaranteeing your legal compliance.

The bond amount that you have to obtain as a D.C. sports wagering operator or retailer is set by the Office of Lottery and Gaming. In order to get bonded, however, you do not need to provide the whole required amount. You have to cover a small percentage of it, which is referred to as the bond premium.

This is the actual bond cost for the licensee. It depends on the strength of your personal and business finances, such as your credit score, company financials, and assets and liquidity. Bond applicants with stable financial profiles typically get rates between 1% and 5% of the required bond amount.

Have more questions about the bonding requirements for sports wagering operators and retailers in Washington, D.C.? You can speak to our bonding specialist by calling us at 877.514.5146.


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Robin Kix

Robin Kix is currently the Renewal Department Manager. Since joining Lance Surety in 2014, she has helped thousands of businesses throughout the nation remain compliant at the federal, state and local level. She has significant experience supporting commercial bond lines, particularly in the automobile, transportation and construction industries. Robin and her team work together to create a positive customer service experience at the time of every policy renewal, whether that be finding the best pricing or offering additional assistance.

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