Organising A Small Lottery

Lotteries are a fantastic way for societies to create an extra income stream. The majority of lotteries are required to either be licensed or registered with a local authority. However, there are a few exceptions.

What is a lottery?

Before learning the rules of a lottery, it is vital that you are aware of what makes a lottery a lottery. In simple terms a lottery is a kind of gambling that has three essential elements:

  • Payment is required to participate
  • One or more prizes are awarded
  • Those prizes are awarded by chance.

There are also two types of lottery, a simple lottery and a complex lottery. An arrangement is a simple lottery if:

  • People are required to pay to participate in the arrangement
  • In the course of the arrangement one or more prizes are allocated to one or more people in a class
  • The prizes are allocated by a process which relies wholly on chance.

An arrangement is a complex lottery if:

  • People are required to pay to participate in the arrangement
  • In the course of the arrangement one or more prizes are allocated to one or more people in a class
  • The prizes are allocated by a series of processes
  • The first of those processes relies wholly on chance.

As earlier mentioned, many lotteries are required to be licensed or registered. However, there a select few which are not required to do so. These are:

  • Incidental lotteries – must be held at an event (either commercial or noncommercial), eg a charity dinner, exhibition, festival, fete.
  • Private lotteries · private society lotteries – only members of the society and those on the society premises can participate in the lottery · work lotteries – only people who work together on the same premises may participate · residents’ lotteries – only people who live at the same premises may participate
  • Customer lotteries – only customers at the business premises may participate.

Incidental lotteries

An incidental lottery is one that is incidental to a commercial or non-commercial event. The lottery must be promoted wholly for a purpose other than that of private gain ie the lottery can only be promoted for charitable or other ‘good cause’ purposes – and cannot be run for private or commercial gain. The event may last more than a single day.

Private lotteries

There are three types of private lotteries permitted by the Act:

  • private society lottery
  • work lottery
  • residents’ lottery

Private lotteries must comply with conditions set out in the Gambling Act . This includes conditions relating to advertising, which state that no advertisement for a private society, work or residents’ lottery may be displayed or distributed except at the society or work premises, or the relevant residence, nor may it be sent to any other premises. Private lotteries must also comply with conditions relating to tickets. In summary these are:

  • a ticket in a private lottery may be sold or supplied only by or on behalf of the promoters
  • tickets (and the rights they represent) are non-transferable
  • the price paid for each ticket in a private lottery must be the same and must be paid to the promoters of the lottery before anyone is given a ticket
  • the arrangements for private lotteries must not include a rollover of prizes from one lottery to another.

Customer lotteries

A customer lottery is a lottery promoted by a person (the promoter) who occupies premises in Great Britain in the course of business. No ticket in the lottery is sold or supplied to a person except at a time when he is on the business premises as a customer of the promoter

Get In Touch

If you would like to set up your own lottery please get in touch and we will be happy to help you.

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    By |2020-08-21T11:20:29+01:00August 21st, 2020|Introduction to Society Lotteries|
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