Affordability Checks To Be 'Frictionless For Customers'

The BHA is aiming to make the affordability checks as smooth as possible according to the organisation's chief executive Julie Harrington  | BHA

The affordability checks on lower-level gambling spend proposed in the Gambling Act Review White Paper will be streamlined as much as possible to minimise the inconvenience to the betting public, according to the British Horseracing Authority, who welcomed the news of the Paper's publication earlier on Thursday.

The paper proposes a £125-threshold net loss within a month or £500 within a year and also states that the checks will be 'frictionless for customers and conducted online by credit reference agencies'.

BHA Chief Executive Julie Harrington said, “The numbers around the less intrusive checks, the £125, are much lower [than anticipated], but it depends on the big unknown for us.

“The work we will do with the Gambling Commission on behalf of the government is how unintrusive and friction-free those checks are. The one area we want to get visibility on to see how much of a risk it is to us is those friction-free tests at the lower end of losses.”

The Gambling Act White Paper estimated that racing would lose anywhere from £8.4 million and £14.9 million a year as a result of the proposal.

Harrington added, “The government's own economic impact work is estimating between £8.4 and £14.9 million negative impact per annum.

“We want to work with our partners in the media rights companies to do our own economic check on those numbers. We're a little concerned that it might be an underestimation.”

However, that was not the only concern the BHA expressed, and Harrington noted that the organisation is also aiming to ensure that seasonal gamblers are not unduly penalised.

“Part of our conversations with the Gambling Commission has got to be taking into account customer behaviour and historic customer behaviour shows that people do save up for those major festivals in the same way that other people would save up for holiday,” Harrington said.

“We've got a huge amount of evidence on that to share with the Gambling Commission. The wording is also around net losses, so we know some of our customers might use their winnings from a major festival to fund their punting for the remainder of the year–how will those checks take that into account?

“Particularly the 90-day threshold, you could still be losing money in July that you won in March. It's a detail that we need to get some context on.”

Not a subscriber? Click here to sign up for the daily PDF or alerts.

Copy Article Link

Liked this article? Read more like this.

  1. Whip Rules Amended Again by BHA
  2. BHA Clears Levey After 'Non-Negative' Saliva Test At Sandown
  3. BHA Will Not “Be Coerced Into Any Activity By Threats Of Protests” And Will Not Debate With Activist Group
  4. Seven Days: Four Hundred
  5. Core Principles For Innovation And Improvement In The 2024 Fixture List Approved By BHA Board

Never miss another story from the TDN

Click Here to sign up for a free subscription.