Paying the Price for Winning
The online casino gambling industry in Sweden is actually a very interesting
situation – the country is in the midst of huge controversy over the fact that
Sweden continues to operate a government-run land and internet gambling
monopoly, Svenske Spel. Then you add to that sticky situation the fact that
gamblers all over Sweden were told by the Swedish government that they have to
pay additional Swedish taxes on their gabling winnings, and it all gets just a
bit more confusing. Online casinos licensed and operating in the European Union
are supposed to have a special status in Sweden – gamblers do not have to pay
additional taxes in their home country if the company is operating or licensed
from an EU member state.
The really interesting part to the situation is the fact that the Swedish tax
authorities and the Swedish government insist that they are still able to
enforce Swedish taxes on winnings from foreign online casinos…the courts though
have now set out the very specific tax requirements.
In the recent case of a Swedish player asked to pay taxes on winnings from two
different online casinos, the judge ruled that it all depends on where the site
is licensed. The gambler is exempted from paying taxes on winnings from the Isle
of Man licensed site but does have to pay taxes on winnings from the internet
gambling site licensed out of Monaco. This court ruling aligns precisely with
what the EU policies stipulate about gambling at the online casinos in the EU –
those winnings are not subject to tax according to EU policy. Unfortunately for
the gambler though, no such policy exists regarding internet gambling winnings
from outside the EU.