Social & Charitable Gambling
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The Social and Charitable Gambling Program administers Iowa Code Chapter 99B, which regulates games of skill or chance, raffles, bingo, social gambling and amusement devices. Qualified organizations may obtain a social or charitable gambling license to conduct fund-raising activities benefiting educational, civic, public, charitable, patriotic, or religious purposes. The administrative rules governing social and charitable gambling activities can be found at 481--100, "Administration", 481--101, "Amusement Concessions", 481--102, "Social Gambling", 481--103, "Bingo", 481--106, "Card Game Tournaments by Veterans Oganizations" and 481--107, "Game Nights".
Important Changes to Iowa's Social & Charitable Gambling Law
Iowa Code chapter 99b was amended during the 2015 session of the Iowa General Assembly. These changes become effective July 1st. A summary of these changes is available here.
Online Licensing System
Iowans may apply and pay for a license to conduct social or charitable gambling using the Department's online licensing system. The system uses a "wizard" to walk the user through the application process. Once the application is completed, the user may purchase the license using a major credit card (Discover, MasterCard, or Visa).
Social Gambling License
A Social Gambling Licenses authorizes small stakes card and parlor games (such as cribbage, euchre, hearts, checkers, chess, dominoes, etc.) between individuals. A Social Gambling License held by a beer or liquor establishment also permits sports-betting pools. The Social Gambling License Application describes the various types of licenses available, as well as the licensing fees and requirements.
Charitable Gambling License Application
In order to conduct certain types of charitable gambling activities, a qualified organization will first need to obtain a Charitable Gambling License. The Charitable Gambling License Application describes the various types of licenses available (bingo, raffles, amusement concessions, etc.), as well as the licensing fees and requirements.
Annual Gambling Reports
All Qualified Organizations which have a charitable gambling license must file a report with the Department even if there was no gambling activity during that fiscal year. The Annual Gambling Report covers the period of July 1 through June 30, which is based on the State's fiscal year. The reports are only available to be filed from July 1st through the due date each year, which is July 30th. If July 30th falls on a Saturday or Sunday then the report is due on the following business day. These reports may not be filed earlier than July 1st. To assist Iowans with the online reporting system, a guide has been developed to explain its use, how to access the system, and how to file a qualified organization's annual gambling report. The Guide to Using the Online Reporting System is available for viewing or downloading.