Lottery Licences – City of Burlington

 Who issues lottery licences?

 The 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 provides a Lottery Licensing Policy Manual. This manual is used by municipal licensing officers to make decisions on eligibility for:

  • How proceeds are used
  • The types of lottery programs for which a licence may be issued

The Registrar also issues terms and conditions for licences, which may be supplemented by municipalities.

The Registrar has a general authority to issue licences. In the case of lottery licensees in pooling bingo halls, the AGCO and the municipality are both involved in issuing 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
  • Raffles under $50,000 in prizes
  • 50/50 draws
  • Bazaar gaming events
  • Media bingo

The Registrar issues licences for:

  • Raffles more than $50,000 in prizes
  • Break open tickets to be sold regionally or province-wide
  • Certain “in conjunction with” games as part of a non-pooling bingo hall, such as Super Jackpot bingo and break open tickets

 What is a lottery?

 In simple terms, a lottery may be defined as any scheme which has the following three components:

  • A prize
  • A chance to win the prize
  • Consideration or a fee

Therefore, a lottery scheme exists if money is paid or some other consideration is given for a chance to win a prize.

Since raising funds through gaming contains a certain element of risk on the part of the charitable organization, lotteries should be viewed as a supplement or alternative to the organization’s other fundraising efforts.

 How do I know if I am eligible for a lottery licence?

Lottery licences are available for charitable, not-for-profit organizations that demonstrate an eligible mandate, including:

  • Advancement of education
  • Advancement of religion
  • Relief of poverty
  • Other charitable purposes beneficial to the community

To be eligible, your organization must:

  • Have been in existence for at least a year
  • Have provided charitable community services consistent with the primary objects and purposes of the organization for at least a year
  • Have a place of business in Ontario and demonstrate that it is established to provide charitable services in Ontario
  • Propose to use proceeds for charitable purposes or objects that benefit Ontario and its residents
  • Assume full responsibility for the conduct and management of its lottery events

The following types of organizations are not considered charitable by the Province of Ontario for lottery licensing purposes and are therefore ineligible:

  • Elected representative groups, including municipal, regional, provincial and federal governments
  • Government ministries, agents or bodies
  • Groups attempting to bring about or oppose change in the law or government policy
  • Groups promoting political doctrine
  • Municipal councils, municipal corporations and their administrative departments
  • Organizations established solely for the purposes of fundraising
  • Political lobby groups and political parties
  • Private sports clubs, such as golf or curling clubs
  • Professional associations, unions and employee groups
  • Social clubs, adult hobby groups and adult sports teams

Contact us for our Requirements for Lottery Licence Eligibility Checklist and Application Package for more information on eligibility.

 What types of lottery events are licensed by the City?

 The City of Burlington issues lottery licences for the following types of events:

  • Bazaars: A one-day event where any combination of the following lotteries may be conducted: a wheel of fortune event (no more than three wheels with bets not exceeding $1), a raffle or penny sale auction lottery not exceeding $500 in prizes, and a bingo lottery not exceeding $500 in prizes.
  • Bingo: A game of chance where players are awarded cash or prize for being the first to complete a specified arrangement of numbers, selected at random, on preprinted bingo cards. Prize boards are $5,000 and under.
  • Break open tickets: Instant-win lottery tickets, commonly known as pull tab, Nevada or break open tickets.
  • Raffles: A lotteries scheme where tickets are sold for a chance to win a prize in a draw of up to a $50,000 prize value.

View more information on types of charitable gaming lottery licences.

 Do I require a lottery licence to conduct my event?

 You require a lottery licence for:

  • 50/50 draws
  • Bazaars
  • Blanket raffle lotteries
  • Break open tickets
  • Calendar draws
  • General raffle draws

You do not require a lottery licence for:

  • Games of skill, such as mini putt, hockey shootouts, bean bag tosses or darts, etc.
  • Silent auctions

 Can I run more than one lottery event at a time?

 Yes, the following combinations are permitted:

  • One break open ticket licence at a time
  • Up to three bingo licences per six-month period
  • One raffle licence with a bingo licence

 What does it cost to get a lottery licence?


  • Bazaar: Three per cent of the prize value for bingo or raffle and $10 per wheel
  • Bingo: Three per cent of the prize board or $102 per event
  • Break open tickets: Three per cent of the prizes awarded per deal
  • Raffle: Three per cent of the retail value of the prize(s), including taxes

Who can I contact for more information?

 You can direct any questions on lottery licensing to one of our licensing customer service representatives by phone at 905-335-7731 or by email at [email protected] .

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Matt Lucas

Writer by day and an aspiring Artist by night. Creative thinking is what I'm all about. Lottos are one of my passions and I'm happy to be contributing to Lottery Papa News

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