Frequently asked questions
What does ‘gaming machine premises’ mean?
The National Gambling Reform Act 2012 (NGR Act) defines ‘gaming machine premises’ as premises on which one or more gaming machines are made available for use. This includes:
- a structure, building, vehicle, vessel or aircraft;
- a place (whether or not enclosed or built on); and
- a part of a thing referred to above.
If you are unsure if your ATM is on a gaming machines premises, please contact the National Gambling Regulator (the Regulator) on 1800 105 563 or firstname.lastname@example.org. It may be necessary to consider the individual circumstances.
What does ‘gaming machine’ mean?
The definition of ‘gaming machine’ is intended to include devices currently known as poker machines, electronic gaming machines and slot machines. It is not intended to cover things such as Keno, lotteries, TAB betting machines or skill testers.
Who is the occupier of the premises?
They are often the person or body who leases or owns the premises. The occupier will generally hold and exercise rights which provide direct control over and access to the premises.
What types of cash withdrawal machines are covered by the word ‘automatic teller machine’?
The meaning of ‘automatic teller machine’ (ATM) is the general/ordinary meaning, and does not include EFTPOS facilities.
Does the ATM withdrawal limit apply to casinos?
How will I know if the ATMs on my premises meet the new requirements?
ATM providers will deliver the solution to limit cash withdrawals on ATMs in gaming machine premises. Contact your ATM provider(s) to discuss making the ATM(s) on your premises compliant.
I use mobile ATMs from time to time, how does this affect me?
The ATM withdrawal limit applies to any ATMs on gaming machine premises (excluding casinos), including mobile ATMs.
How is the 24 hour period for ATM withdrawals worked out?
The withdrawal limit prevents a person from withdrawing, using any one card, more than $250 in total, in any 24 hour period, from that or any ATM on the premises. This is a ‘rolling’ 24 hour period and not a calendar day, or a venue’s opening hours.
If a total of $250 is withdrawn from an ATM on gaming machine premises, the person cannot withdraw further funds from any ATM on those premises, using the same card, for 24 hours. If amounts less than $250 are withdrawn at different times, the person cannot withdraw amounts totalling more than $250 within any 24 hour period.
Does the ATM withdrawal limit mean EFTPOS withdrawals will be limited as well?
Do all ATMs on my premises have to be limited, even if they’re from different providers?
Yes. The limit applies across all ATMs on gaming machine premises even if they are from multiple ATM providers. For example, if a person withdraws $250 from an ATM on the premises, they should not be able to withdraw further cash, using that same card, from any ATM on the premises for 24 hours.
Can ATM providers charge a fee for making ATMs comply with the limit?
This is a matter for ATM providers and venues. Talk to your provider for further information.
What if there are existing State and Territory laws?
As a general principle, State and Territory laws will apply where they impose stricter requirements than those under the NGR Act. For example a State or Territory law may impose a lower cash withdrawal limit of $100 to ATMs, in the same circumstances, and that limit will apply.
Are there penalties for non-compliance?
The NGR Act provides penalties which may be imposed on persons who provide or allow non-compliant ATMs on gaming machines premises. Penalties can be imposed on both occupiers of premises and ATM providers. The Regulator can apply to a court to impose civil penalty orders where there is a contravention of the Act. If the occupier of the premises provides an ATM that allows a person to withdraw more than the $250 limit, they can be penalised 5 penalty units per day for each day of not being compliant. An ATM provider can be penalised 10 penalty units per day.
If the occupier of a premises or the ATM provider are a body corporate, then a court may impose a penalty not exceeding five times the amount of the maximum penalty that could be imposed on an individual.
However, the Regulator will be taking an educative approach to ensure compliance with the ATM measure, helping industry to understand their legal obligations, with a focus on working collaboratively to achieve compliance. For further information please see the compliance page.
ATM withdrawal limit exemptions
A person who occupies gaming machine premises (other than casinos) as defined under the National Gambling Reform Act 2012 may apply for the premises to be exempt from the requirement to limit the amount of cash that can be withdrawn from an automatic teller machine (ATM) on those premises.
For an exemption to be granted, the Regulator must be satisfied that the withdrawal limit would cause an unreasonable inconvenience to the community. Exemptions will only be granted in limited circumstances.
Guidance for completing your application
The following information may be helpful when completing your application form. Answers to frequently asked questions about the ATM withdrawal limit are also available and may be helpful in completing your application.
A copy of the guidelines used by the Regulator in assessing applications for exemption is also available.
How do I get an exemption from the ATM withdrawal limit?
You can apply to the Regulator for an exemption for your gaming machine premises by completing the form provided and submitting it to email@example.com. Alternatively, you can post the form to:
National Gambling Regulator
PO Box 7576
CANBERRA MAIL CENTRE ACT 2610.
Do I need to comply with the ATM withdrawal limit while my exemption request is being considered?
Yes. Unless the Regulator has approved your exemption request, the ATM withdrawal limit requirements apply.
How does the Regulator decide who gets an exemption?
The Regulator must decide whether compliance with Part 4 of the NGR Act will cause unreasonable inconvenience to members of the community where the premises are located (see s 43(3)). Exemptions will only be granted in limited circumstances.
What does ‘unreasonable inconvenience’ mean?
There are a number of factors that the Regulator may consider when determining whether members of a community will be unreasonably inconvenienced by the ATM withdrawal limit.
When assessing applications the Regulator must, under s 44 of the NGR Act, have regard to:
- the object of the NGR Act (set out in s 4)
- any other facilities (ATM or otherwise) members of the community have for withdrawing cash
- any other matter the Regulator considers appropriate.
The Regulator may also consider, but is not limited to, the following factors:
- current usage of the ATM(s) on the premises
- if no other cash withdrawal facilities are available in the surrounding area, the location and accessibility of the nearest cash withdrawal facility
- views of the local community both for and against the application
- impact on members of the community requiring cash withdrawals of amounts greater than $250 for purposes other than gambling.
Exemption decisions will be made on a case by case basis.
How long will it take to decide whether I can have an exemption?
All applications will be processed and responded to as soon as possible. This will include:
- acknowledgement of receipt of an application within a reasonable timeframe; and
- notification of the decision on the application within a reasonable timeframe (noting that particularly complex applications or applications for which further information is sought may require additional time).
Who will the Regulator consult with on my application?
Section 44 of the NGR Act provides that the Regulator may consult with State, Territory and Local Governments, community groups, members of the community or any other person considered appropriate.
Can I amend or withdraw my application after I’ve submitted it?
Yes, you can do this in writing at any time before a decision has been made. Withdrawing an application does not prevent you from making a new application.
How will I know if my application has been approved?
Applicants will be advised in writing of the Regulator’s decision. If you have provided an email address, we will advise you via email first, and follow up with a hard copy letter.
What does it mean where it says there are conditions relating to my exemption?
The Regulator may specify conditions that must be satisfied in order for the exemption to be granted. For example, a condition could be imposed requiring you to notify the Regulator of any relevant change in circumstances in your venue or community. Conditions may also be imposed in relation to the period of time for which the exemption applies.
How long can the Regulator grant an exemption?
It varies, depending on the circumstances. If the Regulator grants an exemption from the ATM measure, the exemption will continue to apply unless any conditions imposed state otherwise. For example, a condition providing for a review or end date could be imposed. Timing could vary depending on the circumstances and reasons for granting an exemption.
What if I have already obtained an exemption under a State or Territory law?
You must seek an exemption under the NGR Act if you wish to be exempt from the $250 ATM withdrawal limit requirements. Any exemptions under equivalent State and Territory laws do not apply to the NGR Act. It does not matter whether the State or Territory law imposes stricter requirements or not.
What if I don’t agree with the decision made in relation to my application?
You can apply in writing for an internal review of the Regulator’s decision. You will have 30 days from the day you received notice of the decision, to make an application for review. You will be given information about your rights of review when you are notified of the decision.