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Is Poker Legal in Canada?
Playing poker is legal in Canada be it online poker or live poker. The thing is though, if you are in Canada, you are not likely playing at a poker site licenced by the Government of Canada because, currently, Canada doesn’t issue gambling licences.
The exception here however involves Indian Reservations. Many online poker sites and other gambling entities online are licenced and legally operating under a licence issued by the Kahnawake Mohawk Indian tribe which is located in Canada just out of Montreal.
If you’re looking to keep your money local online poker sites licensed by the Kahnawake Gaming Commission are your best shot.
How is Poker Taxed in Canada?
A casual poker player in Canada doesn’t pay income tax on poker winnings. According to Canadian poker law, casual poker and other gambling revenue isn’t taxable. You went in with already taxed money, spent it on entertainment, everything is fine.
Later on though, when you begin to learn the game things change. You then start making responsible choices, you chart your winnings versus your losses, you create a system for managing your bankroll, you enter smart tournaments, play at cash game levels you can beat and before you know it you’re grinding out a steady income.
Guess what just happened? . . . You just stopped being a casual player and became a small business. You’re now in the business of paying poker and it is time to hire an accountant that specifically knows about poker and gambling related taxes in Canada.
Poker Popularity in Canada
Recent articles on businesswire.com show that poker has actually become more popular in Canada than it is in America. In fact , the article says that Canadians are twice as likely to participate in poker games than United States poker players. The article does state however that, since Black Friday occurrences, players are leaning more and more toward Canadian poker sites that are publicly traded on open stock exchanges.
Peak Poker Time at Canadian Poker Sites
Peak poker playing time at most poker sites for Canadian players begin during the later portion of the afternoon and goes on until about 10pm. After that there’s a bit of a late night rush that doesn’t compare to the daytime peak but opens up some tables and allows for a lot of looser games that pay very well for the more experienced, or more patient, poker player.
Safety and Security on Canadian Poker Sites
Most online poker sites, all over the world, are legally operating licenced and regulated. The majority are also monitored by neutral companies that exist solely to monitor random number generators and algorithms for randomness and fairness in addition to monitoring the integrity and maintenance of security systems.
Now, as you probably already know has happened in the past, it’s not impossible for a card room’s security to be breached but it’s rare and nearly impossible. However, whether it be by an inside job, a dirty coding company or whatever it was that happened with Absolute Poker years ago, it is possible.
For that reason, it’s safest to stick to well known, well reputed and publicly traded card rooms, and as luck would have it, we are familiar with most every card room online, we know which offer the best customer service, which are above reproach and which have records as rouge rooms.
The safest way to find a secure poker site that welcomes Canadian poker players with open tables is to press ctrl d on your computers keyboard right now and bookmark this page. We prescreen every poker room listed on this website, using a dozen + years of industry knowledge for your peace of mind.
Preferred Currencies for Canadian Poker Players
The preferred currency for most Canadian poker players is of course going to be the Canadian Dollar. Not every casino online offers play with Canadian dollars however there are some, such as Pokerstars, that do. In most cases if you cannot find a poker room that will let you play with CAD, you can at least find an online poker deposit method that will accept your Canadian funds and deposit them to a poker room. During that process you can decide which is more financially sound, exchanging currency through a payment processor or at the poker site itself, we’ve found most poker sites have exchange rates that are very competitive – they don’t want to put anyone off.