Lotteries for non-profit and charitable organizations must be licensed. It is illegal to print tickets, promote or conduct a charitable gaming event without a licence.
The City of St. Catharines can help your organization become eligible for lottery licensing, which is an instrumental means of fundraising for many charitable organizations that benefit the local community.
Activities are regulated by the Criminal Code of Canada, Section 206 & 207, Order-in-Council, Gaming Control Act, 1992, as well as provincial and municipal regulations. In 1969, the Government of Canada amended the Criminal Code (Canada) making it possible for eligible charitable or religious organizations to conduct and manage lottery schemes under a licence issued by the appropriate provincial authority.
The Criminal Code includes the following sections:
Section 206 makes it an indictable offence to participate in a lottery scheme in any manner
The Government of Ontario, by Order-in-Council, designates the Registrar of Alcohol and Gaming and Municipal Councils as licensing authorities
In 1969, the Government of Canada amended the Criminal Code (Canada) making it possible for eligible charitable or religious organizations to conduct and manage lottery schemes under a licence issued by the appropriate provincial authority.
To be eligible for a lottery licence, an applicant must qualify either as an eligible charitable organization or as a non-profit organization with charitable purposes or objects including the relief of poverty, advancement of education and religion or other charitable purposes that are beneficial to the community.
To determine eligibility, the organization must supply the following documentation:
An organization must also demonstrate that, consistent with the organization's mandate, it has carried out charitable activities that provide a direct benefit to Ontario residents for a minimum of one year.
View the Lottery License Terms and Conditions, under the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario
A lottery scheme exists if money is paid or some other consideration is given for a chance to win a prize.
There are many types of lottery schemes for which licences are not available. The licensing authority will confirm whether or not a licence is available for a proposed lottery scheme. If the proposed event is one for which a lottery licence is available, the organization is responsible for making an application. The organization is also responsible for ensuring that all its schemes are operated legally.
A lottery scheme is where tickets are sold for a chance to win a prize in a draw. A municipal licence can be issued for a maximum prize value of $50,000. All lotteries where the prize value is over $50,000 are licensed by the Registrar, Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO).
Download the Raffle Lottery Application
A one-day event where any combination of the following lotteries may be conducted such as; a wheel of fortune event at which there are no more than three wheels and individual bets are no more than $2; a raffle or penny sale auction lottery not exceeding $500 in prizes; a bingo lottery not exceeding $500 in prizes
Download the Bazaar Lottery Application
Bingo is a game of chance where players are awarded a cash prize or prizes for being the first to complete a specified arrangement of numbers, selected at random, on pre-printed bingo cards.
All organizations must submit a financial report after the event. The report for break open ticket, raffle and bazaar lotteries must be filed with the City of St. Catharines within 30 days of the event. All bingo lottery reports must be filed monthly.
Copies of all applications are available at the City of St. Catharines, City Clerk's Office, City Hall. Completed lottery applications and fees must also be submitted in person in the City Clerk's office.
The Lottery Licence Fee, set by the province, is based on three per cent of the prize value for raffle, bazaar, break open ticket and regular bingo lotteries. The licence fee for bingo in a pooling hall is three per cent of actual prizes awarded.
All lottery licence fees are payable by cheque drawn on the lottery trust account from the charitable organization that is applying for the licence. All cheques must be made payable to the City of St. Catharines.