Small society lottery

Small society lottery registration

Download application forms and return forms to register a non-commercial small society lottery.

The application fee is £40.00 with an annual fee of £20.00 payable on the anniversary of the date of grant.

Does a lottery require a licence?

Various types of lottery can be lawfully be promoted in the UK. Different types of lottery are subject to different requirements and may require regulation by different agencies as defined in the Gambling Act 2005.

The types of lottery that can be promoted include:

The National Lottery

This remains the most popular gambling activity in the UK. It is entirely regulated by the National Lottery Commission.

Large society lotteries

Societies that run lotteries where the proceeds (i.e. ticket sales) in a single lottery exceed £20,000, or the proceeds in all lotteries run in the same calendar year exceeds £250,000, are defined by the Gambling Act 2005 as running large lotteries, and as such, are regulated and must run under an operating licence issued by the Gambling Commission.

Local authority lotteries

These are lotteries operated by local authorities to support any purpose for which they have power to incur expenditure, and are regulated by the Gambling Commission.

Small society lotteries

These are where the proceeds (i.e. ticket sales) in a single lottery are £20,000 or less and £250,000 or less in all lotteries in the same calendar year. They are exempt from holding a Gambling Commission operating licence but must be registered with the local authority in who's area the principal office of the society is situated. These lotteries must only be run in support of good causes, such as charity fundraising and cannot be run for private or commercial gain.

Exempt lotteries

These lotteries do not need to be in support of a good cause and do not require to be run under any operating license issued by the Gambling Commission, or otherwise require registration with any statutory body

There are three categories of exempt lottery:

  • Incidental non-commercial lotteries - held at non-commercial events, where all money raised at the event goes entirely to purposes that are not for private or commercial gain
  • Private society, work or residents lotteries - where tickets can only be sold to society members, workers in or residents of a premises
  • Customer lotteries - run by occupiers of business premises selling tickets only to customers on the premises itself

The Gambling Commission website has more information on running a small society lottery.