Gambling operator reminder

This is a reminder for Estonian gambling operators regarding the obligations imposed upon them by law.

Taxation and declaration

The gambling tax must be declared and paid by each company to whom an activity licence and operating permit has been issued. The gambling tax is paid into the bank account of the Estonian Tax and Customs Board.

The gambling operator must submit a gambling tax return to the Estonian Tax and Customs Board (ETCB) and pay the gambling tax by the 15th day of the calendar month following the period of taxation.

  • The period of taxation for gambling tax is the calendar month.
  • In the event of organising a tournament of a game of chance, the period of taxation is the period during which one tournament of a game of chance is organised, starting on the first day of accepting the participation fees set out in the rules of the tournament of the game of chance and ending on the day when the acceptance of participation fees set out in the rules of the tournament of the game of chance is terminated.
  • In the event of organising a commercial lottery, the period of taxation is the period during which the commercial lottery is organised, starting on the first day set out in the rules of the game for placing bets and ending on the final day for distributing winnings as set out in the rules of the game.
  • in the event of organising games of chance on a gaming machine, 300 euros per gaming machine used for the organization of a game of chance and 10 per cent of the total amount of bets, from which the winnings have been deducted;
  • in the event of organizing a game of chance using a gambling table, 1278.23 euros per gaming table;
  • in the event of organizing games of chance and games of skill as remote gambling, 5% of the total amount of bets from which the winnings have been deducted;
  • in the event of organizing a gambling tournament as a tournament of a game of chance, 5% of the total amount of participation fees for the tournament of a game of chance, which is the amount of fees paid to the operator by the participants of the tournament, which constitutes the prize pool of the tournament and the fee of the operator;
  • in the event of organizing a tournament of a game of chance as a ring game, 5% of the total amount received from the participation fees of the tournament of a game of chance, which is the amount of fees received by the gambling operator from the bets made by the players in the ring game;
  • in the event of organising a toto, 5% of the total amount of bets from which the winnings have been deducted;
  • in the event of organising a lottery, 18% of the total amount received from the sale of lottery tickets;
  • in the event of organizing a game of skill on a gambling machine, 31.95 euros per gambling machine;
  • in the event of organizing a commercial lottery, 18% of the prize pool.

Obligation to submit an annual report and a reserve

Each year, within 6 months following the end of the financial year, companies must submit an annual report to the Commercial Register for the previous year.

Non-resident gambling operators must submit an annual report that has been translated into Estonian to the Estonian Tax and Customs Board at the address hasart@emta.ee.

The gambling operator must submit the note "Bets and Distributed Prizes" (in Estonian) along with the annual accounts and comply with the additional requirements established for accounting:

  • Income and expense are not balanced with one another in the income statement of a gambling operator. Only such income and expense can be balanced which do not derive from the principal activity of the gambling operator and which derive from one transaction or several transactions of the same type which, taken separately, do not have a significant impact on the financial performance of the gambling operator.
  • The total amount of bets recorded under income, the total amount of winnings distributed to players recorded under expense, and the difference between the total amount of bets recorded under income, and the total amount of winnings distributed to players recorded under expense are disclosed in the note “Bets and Distributed Prizes” (in Estonian) to the annual accounts, broken down as follows:
    - land-based games of chance; separately for each city/rural municipality;
    - remote gambling games of chance;
    - land-based tournaments;
    - remote gambling tournaments;
    - lotteries, separately for each sub-category;
    - totos;
    - games of skill.
  • The gambling operator shall submit, as a note to the annual report, information concerning the persons who had a qualifying holding in the gambling operator as at the end of the financial year, indicating the size of the holding of each person and the circumstances concerning such a holding pursuant to subsection 11 (2) of the Gambling Act and subsection 10 (1) of the Securities Market Act.

The gambling operator must form an additional reserve from annual net profit transfers or other transfers which can be entered in the reserve pursuant to law or the articles of association.

The obligation to form a reserve does not apply to a gambling operator whose shareholders’ equity as recorded on the balance sheet of the annual accounts constitutes at least one-half of the total assets.

On the formation of a reserve:

  • The amount of an additional reserve shall not be less than one-third of the share capital.
  • During each financial year, at least one-seventh of the net profit shall be entered in the additional reserve. When the additional reserve reaches the amount prescribed in the articles of association, the increase of the reserve shall be terminated.
  • Upon a resolution of the general meeting, the additional reserve may be used to cover a loss if it is not possible to cover the loss from available shareholders’ equity of the gambling operator out of retained earnings, accumulated surplus or the legal reserve prescribed by the articles of association. Upon a resolution of the general meeting, the additional reserve may also be used to increase the share capital.
  • It is prohibited to make payments to founders or shareholders from the additional reserve.

Alteration of data on the basis of which an activity license or operating permit is issued

The gambling operator shall immediately inform the Estonian Tax and Customs Board about all changes in the information submitted for obtaining the activity licence or operating permit. Depending on the information you wish to change, it may be necessary to provide additional information with the notification.

Before launching a new platform and/or new games, the operator must submit a signed notice to the Estonian Tax and Customs Board indicating the following information about the platform and/or games to be used.

In the case of remote gambling games or a platform, the notification shall include information on the name and manufacturer of the platform/game and when the platform/game is intended to be placed into service. The notification must be accompanied by a certificate prepared by an expert recognized by the Estonian Tax and Customs Board, which confirms that:

  1. the randomness of determining the outcome of the gambling cannot be influenced by the gambling operator or any other person (Random Number Generator or RNG);
  2. the average amount distributed to players as a result of a game of chance shall exceed 80 per cent of the total amount of all bets;
  3. the data of significant importance in playing a game of gambling shall be stored if the game is interrupted, irrespective of the reason for such interruption, and the interruptions of a game, the results of a game and any alterations made in the gaming system shall be recorded. This information shall be stored for at least five years.

The Estonian Tax and Customs Board shall also only accept a signed confirmation from the operator regarding the claim specified in clauses 2 and 3. A certificate confirming compliance with the randomness requirement must be submitted.

We would also like to point out that if the above information about the platform has been submitted and the introduction of new games running on the same platform alone is desired, then it is not necessary to submit a separate notification to the Estonian Tax and Customs Board.

Submission of notification is not required in the case of land-based gaming machines and gaming tables; however, these must be registered in the EHMA system.

Before changing the rules of the game, the operator must submit a signed notice to the Estonian Tax and Customs Board and the new rules of the game must be approved by the management board. The rules of the game must include:

  1. the business name and registry code of the gambling operator;
  2. a description of the game, including the conditions of and procedure for participating in the game;
  3. the rules for determining the winner and the amount of the prize;
  4. the location of, procedure for and final date of distribution of prizes;
  5. the procedure and term for settlements of complaints filed by players.

Please notify the Estonian Tax and Customs Board service bureau of the changes or send it to the e-mail address hasart@emta.ee.

In the event of a change of members of the management board or supervisory board, the operator must submit a signed notice to the Estonian Tax and Customs Board. This notification shall be accompanied by information and documents concerning the new members of the management board or supervisory board, which shall include:

  1. their given name and surname, personal identification code or, in the absence thereof, their date of birth;
  2. their place of residence, full list of places of employment and positions;
  3. documents which prove the trustworthiness and conformity to the requirements of the Gambling Act, which the applicant considers important to submit (proof of the absence of punishments from the police of the place of residence);
  4. documents certifying the financial status of the person during the last three years, including a full list of the immovable property, construction works and securities belonging to the person;
  5. and authenticated copies of the person’s income tax returns for the last three years.

In the case of new Estonian members of the management board or supervisory board, it is not necessary to submit the documents specified in clauses 3-5 to the Estonian Tax and Customs Board.


Prior to a change in shareholders, the operator must submit a signed notice to the Estonian Tax and Customs Board. The notification shall be accompanied by a list of new shareholders, including:

  1. the name, registry code or personal identification code of each shareholder or, in the absence thereof, their date of birth;
  2. information about the number of shares or size of the holding and number of votes to be acquired by or already held by each shareholder.


In the case of shareholders who are Estonian(s) and/or Estonian company(ies) who acquire a qualifying holding in the gambling operator (at least 10 per cent of the share capital, all rights or all voting rights in the company which allow significant influence over the management of the company), then documents and particulars must be submitted, which contain:

  1. the name of the acquirer of a qualifying holding, and the beneficial owner’s name and place of residence or seat;
  2. if the acquirer of a qualifying holding is a company, then the company registry code, information on the members of the management board and supervisory board, including, for each person, their given name and surname, personal identification code or date of birth in the absence of a personal identification code;
  3. the structure of a consolidation group, if the acquirer of a qualifying holding belongs to the consolidation group, and the information on the size of the holdings of the companies belonging to the consolidation group.

In the case of foreign shareholders or shareholders in the form of a foreign company and/or foreign company(ies), who acquire a qualifying holding in a gambling operator, documents and information must be provided which include:

  1. the name or designation of the acquirer of the qualifying holding and the beneficial owner, the place of residence or seat and the registry code, and also a copy of the articles of association, if they exist, if the acquirer is a company;
  2. if the acquirer of a qualifying holding is a private person, documents certifying their financial status during the last three years, including a full list of the immovable property, construction works and securities owned by them, authenticated copies of their income tax returns for the last three years, and a certificate from the police of their place of residence
  3. information on the members of the management board and supervisory board if the acquirer of a qualifying holding is a company, including, for each person, their forename and surname, personal identification code or date of birth in the absence of a personal identification code, and documents which prove the trustworthiness and impeccable business reputation of such persons, and which the acquirer considers important to submit;
  4. in addition, the last three annual reports, if the acquirer of a qualifying holding is a company;
  5. in the case of the beneficial owner, a certificate from the police of the place of residence confirming the absence of penalties;
  6. the structure of a consolidation group if the acquirer of a qualifying holding belongs to the consolidation group, and the information on the size of the holdings of the companies belonging to the consolidation group;
  7. in the case of an acquirer of a qualifying holding in a group, the last three annual reports of the consolidation group, including profit distribution proposals and reports of a sworn auditor.

The above-mentioned notifications must be submitted to the Estonian Tax and Customs Board service bureau or sent to the e-mail address hasart@emta.ee.

Last updated: 01.04.2022

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