Services & Departments
Lottery Licensing - Special Events Licence
Charitable gaming refers to lottery schemes permitted by a licence under the Criminal Code of Canada. A lottery is defined as "any time consideration is paid for a chance to win a prize" where consideration (cash) is paid for a chance (ticket/card) to win a prize.
These may include bingos, raffles, break open tickets and Monte Carlo events held by charitable and religious organizations.
Who issues lottery licences?
The Alcohol and Gaming Commission (AGCO) and municipalities work together to ensure licensees and any gaming suppliers comply with legal requirements, including terms and conditions to the licences. The Registrar has issued a Lottery Licensing Policy Manual which is used by municipal licensing officers to make decisions on eligibility for a lottery licence and for the use of proceeds, and for the types of lottery programs for which a licence may be issued. The Registrar also issues terms and conditions for lottery licences, which may be supplemented by municipalities.
The Registrar has a general authority to issue lottery licences. In the case of lottery licensees in pooling bingo halls, the AGCO and the municipality are both involved in the issuing of the licences. In other situations, the municipality will issue most lottery licences for bingos not in a pooling bingo hall with a maximum prize board of $5,500, break open tickets sold within the municipality, and raffles under $50,000 in prizes. The Registrar issues licences for raffles more than $50,000 in prizes, break open tickets to be sold regionally or province-wide, and certain "in conjunction with" games as part of a non-pooling bingo hall. These games include Super Jackpot bingo and break open tickets.
Are you eligible for a Charitable Gaming Licence?
Canada's Criminal Code permits charitable and religious organizations to conduct a lottery scheme to raise funds once a licence is issued. Organizations must have a demonstrated charitable or religious mandate to provide programs (see programs below).
The eligibility of your organization will be determined by the licensing office you are applying to. Charitable registration with Revenue Canada or incorporation as a non-profit organization does NOT guarantee eligibility for licences.
Your organization may be eligible if it:
Has a purpose to provide charitable services to Ontario residents for one or more of the following:
1. Relief of Poverty
2. Advancement of Education
3. Advancement of Religion
4. Other chairtable purposes to benefit the community
- organization must be in existence and has carried out activities consistent with its charitable purpose for at least one (1) year.
- organization must have a place of business in Ontario; demonstrate that it is established to provide charitable services in Ontario and use proceeds for objects or special purposes which benefit Ontario residents.
- is non-profit.
- The Municipality of Hastings Highlands will only issue a lottery licence to an organization which operates charitable facilities or programs within the Municipality.
Examples may include:
- hospital foundations
- service clubs
- youth activities or sports
- arts or culture
Organizations that only promote the private interests of their members (are not charitable)
DO NOT qualify for a lottery licence. This may include, but is NOT limited to:
- adult recreation or sports teams
- individual adult or youth sports teams
- unions or employee groups
- social clubs
- professional associations
- political, government, lobbying or advocacy groups, political parties
- adult hobby groups
- elected representative groups, including municipal, regional, provincial and federal governments (includes Committees of Council)
- government ministries, agents or bodies
- groups promoting political doctrine
- groups attempting to bring about or oppose change in the law or government policy
- municipal councils, municipal corporations and their administrative departments (eg Library Boards, Fire Halls)
- organizations established solely for the purposes of fundraising
- private sports clubs, such as golf or curling clubs
If one of these groups wishes to raise funds to donate to charities, it must become recognized as a charitable organization with an established charitable mandate, either through incorporation or by constitution or bylaws, and apply for a lottery licences to be used for projects or donations that are consistent with its charitable mandate.
*Proceeds for lotteries must be used for charitable or religious obects and purposes only.
Organizations must submit an eligibility package to Hastings Highlands and receive approval before applying for a lottery licence.
The following information can be accessed online at the Alcohol and Gaming Commission (AGCO) website.
- Application forms for all gaming events
- Terms and conditions for all gaming events
- The Lottery Licence Policy Manual
- Use of proceeds
- Eligibility requirements and regulations
- Reports for all gaming events
Lottery Trust Account - The licensee MUST open and maintain a separate designated lottery trust account to administer all funds related to the conduct of lottery events.
Lottery Documents can be found in the documents section at the bottom of this page.
Please call or email our Lottery Licensing Officer to schedule an appointment:
Suzanne Huschilt, Deputy Clerk
613 338-2811 Ext. 277