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HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Debt and return pursuit: Excise Duties (other than APD): Who is liable to pay the debt? Pool Betting Duty


Pool Betting duty is a duty that applies to bets made by way of pool betting with apromoter in the UK.

Duty is calculated on the gross profits (net pool betting receipts) from dutiable poolbets. An example of pool betting is the football pools, where people make bets on termsthat do not allow them to calculate in advance how much they will receive if they win. SeeX-22 Pool Betting Duty.

The pool betting market is dominated by the big three promoters, Littlewoods, Vernons andZetters. Any person who wishes to carry on a pool betting business must have a permit fromHM Revenue and Customs (paragraph 5 of Schedule 1 to the Betting and Gaming Duties Act1981).

The promoter

The promoter or operator of a totalisator must pay the duty due.

Pools promoters must render monthly returns and payments to the Greenock AccountingCentre, by the 15th day following the end of the accounting period.

Other persons liable to pay the duty

Section 8(2) of the Betting and Gaming Duties Act 1981 provides:

“Pool betting duty that is due to be paid may be recovered from the following personsas if they were jointly and severally liable to pay the duty-

(a) the person on whose net pool betting receipts the duty is charged (“the primarypayer”);

(b) a person responsible for the management of any business in the course of which anybets have been made that are dutiable pool bets for the purposes of calculations undersection 7A of the amount of the primary payer’s net pool betting receipts for anyaccounting period;

(c) a person responsible for the management of any totalisator used for the purposes ofany such business;

(d) where a person within any of paragraphs (a) to (c) is a company, a director.”