Lottery License (or Lottery Scheme License)
A lottery license is needed to operate a gaming event on Prince Edward Island.
What is considered a gaming event?
A gaming event is any event where:
- a participant has to pay to play
- the winner is determined by chance
- the prize is greater than the cost to play
Can I apply for a lottery license?
You cannot apply for a lottery license as an individual, government or business. Only non-profit and charitable organizations may request lottery licenses.
The proceeds of a lottery must also be used for:
- relief of poverty
- education (ie, funds for study, travel for a course)
- the advancement of a recognized religion
- some other purpose beneficial to the community
You cannot get a lottery license for:
- tuition costs
- defraying the costs of a family or class reunion
Can one individual or small group of individuals with a sports team or any other organization get a lottery license to fundraise only on their own behalf?
No, applicants must be working toward the greater good of the entire community and not your own self-interest. However, this doesn’t mean all proceeds must be divided equally at all times. For example, if a player or their family is underprivileged or in special need and the team decided to help that player by giving them a larger portion of the proceeds from a fundraising event, this would be considered a “charitable purpose” and would fit within the requirements to apply for a lottery scheme License.
NOTE: You cannot hold a lottery where tickets are given to members of a sports team or other organization and members receive credit for the number of tickets they sell.
Can I get a lottery license for a graduation event?
Yes, but it depends on what the proceeds of the lottery will be used for. For example, you cannot get a license is the proceeds are for a graduation party or dance. However, you might be able to get a license if the proceeds will be used for printing programs, renting a location or hiring a guest speaker.
What is the fee to apply for a lottery license?
Lottery License Fees are based upon the total retail prize value.
- For lotteries, other than bingo, with a total retail prize value of $5,000 or less, there is no fee.
- For lotteries, other than bingo, with a total retail prize value over $5,000 the fee is $25, due upon application.
- For series event bingos where the total value of prizes offered is above $250 but less than $45,000, and gross bingo receipts are less than $100,000, the fee is $25.
- For series event bingos where the total value of prizes offered is above $45,000 and gross bingo receipts are above $100,000, the fee is $2% of the value of the prizes offered.
- Please advise the Consumer Services section when events are licensed in other provinces, in addition to P.E.I.
- Cheques must be made payable to the Minister of Finance.
Note: The cost of the license is still two per cent of the retail value of the prizes being offered even if the prizes were donated or purchased at a wholesale price.
Does the fee have to be included with the application form?
Yes, the fee is required when you submit an application form. The only exception to this would be for a 50/50 type draw where you do not know what the cost of the prize will be. In this case, a Report-back license will be issued along with a Report Back Form which is due and payable on the completion date of the 50/50 draw. The two page application form is needed for this type of License.
How do I apply for a lottery license?
If the license offers a prize value of $5000 or less, fill out the one page application form at any Access PEI location. The license can be issued directly over the counter.
If the license offers a prize value over $5000 or is for a series event, fill out the two page application form and send to Financial and Consumer Services at least two weeks before the start of ticket sales for the event.
When the application is completed, it will be reviewed and if everything is in order and the fee paid, the license will be issued as soon as possible.
Can lottery tickets be sold off-island?
No, all tickets must be sold on PEI. In order to sell tickets in another jurisdiction, you must also obtain a license in that jurisdiction.
Does the license number need to be printed on the tickets?
No, this is not required, but the Financial and Consumer Services division recommends that the number be printed on tickets. The License number adds more credibility to your tickets.
Can I use the same lottery license number again for another single event?
No, the only time a lottery license number is renewed is for a series of events such as a bingo license. The maximum time for any license is one year from the date of application.
If I don’t sell enough tickets, can I extend the draw date?
If you change the date of the draw you also change the odds to win. To extend the date of the draw beyond the expiry date of the approved license, you must contact each and every person who purchased a ticket and ask if they wish to leave their ticket in for the draw on the new date or if they wish to have their money refunded and their ticket withdrawn from the draw.
You must contact Consumer Services to request a new draw date and to get instructions on how to proceed.
If tickets sell well, can I print more tickets?
If you increase the number of tickets you also change the odds to win. Additional tickets cannot be printed after the application is processed unless all ticket holders are contacted and advised that more tickets will be printed. They must also be asked if they wish to leave their ticket in the draw or if they wish to have their money refunded and their ticket withdrawn from the draw.
You must contact Consumer Services to request an amended license and get instructions on how to proceed. The license is issued based on the information on the original application. You should be generous with the figure recorded on your application so that there is no issue if ticket sales go well and you need to print more.
Who can I contact for more information?
Consumer Services Section
Financial and Consumer Services Division
1st Floor, Shaw Building North
105 Rochford Street
PO Box 2000
Charlottetown, PE C1A 7N8
Phone: (902) 368-4550
Toll Free: 1-800-658-1799
Fax: (902) 368-5283