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Small scale lottery registration frequently asked questions


How much can be offered as a single or total prize?

The total value of tickets to be sold per single lottery must not exceed £20,000.

The collective value of tickets to be sold for all the lotteries must not exceed £250,000 in a calendar year. If a society plans to exceed either of these values they must have a gambling licence, as they are then classed as a large operator.

What prizes can be offered?

Prizes awarded can be cash, goods or services.

Up to 80% of the total proceeds of any lottery may be divided between prizes and the cost of running of the lottery.

Donated prizes are not counted as part of this 80% (as no money is withdrawn from the proceeds to cover their purchase). However, this should still be specified on the return after the draw.

No single prize can be worth more than £25,000 (whether in money, money's worth, or partly the one and partly the other).

Rollovers between lotteries are permitted but only where every lottery affected is also a small society lottery promoted by the same society, and the maximum single prize is £25,000.

At least 20% of the lottery proceeds must be applied to the purposes for which the society was set up.

You can offer alcohol as a prize although it cannot be given to a winner under the age of 18.

As long as the prizes are in sealed containers a Temporary Event Notice would not be required, although you may need one for other activities and attractions at the event.

If someone who appears to be under 18 wins an alcoholic prize, checks should be made to verify their age.

Can I sell tickets on the run up to the draw?

Holders of a small society lottery can sell tickets prior to the event. Tickets can either be physical or virtual (for example an email). Tickets must show:

  • The name of the promoting society;
  • The price of the ticket (there is no maximum price you can charge for a ticket, however all tickets must cost the same);
  • The name and address of the member of the society who is designated as having responsibility at the society for promotion of the lottery or the external lottery manager
  • The date of the draw, or such information, which enables the date of the draw to be determined.

The requirement to provide this information by email can be satisfied by providing an opportunity for the participant to retain the message electronically or print it.

How old do you have to be to buy and sell tickets?

Tickets can only be sold to persons over the age of 16 years and sold by persons over the age of 16 years.

Where can they be sold from?

Tickets may be sold from a kiosk, in a shop, or door to door. Tickets should not be sold in a street (which includes any bridge, road, lane, footway, subway, court or passage).

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