SEGOB | Secretaría de Gobernación (Secretariat of the Interior)

Every online casino and gambling establishment in Mexico adheres to strict policies set by the Secretaría de Gobernación (SEGOB).

SEGOB controls all betting and gambling activities in the Mexican region by allocating gambling licenses and overseeing compliance.

The Secretaría de Gobernación's gambling laws prevent underage gambling and protect Mexico's citizens who bet online.

As Mexico's federal agency governing gambling, SEGOB handles all license applications and guarantees applicants meet its operational criteria to ensure integrity and quality.

Keep reading to learn more about gambling in Mexico and how SEGOB assures a level of excellence in its gambling and online casino industry.

SEGOB | Secretaría de Gobernación (Secretariat of the Interior)
Priya Sharma
Written byPriya SharmaWriter
Researched byPriya PatelResearcher

What is SEGOB?

The Secretaria de Gobernacion (SEGOB), also known as the Secretariat of the Interior or the Ministry of the Interior, oversees all betting and gambling activities in the Mexican States.

Established in Mexico City in 1853, SEGOB is the governing body that authorizes, controls, and supervises all activities that include bets and draws within Mexico's borders.

The Gaming Bureau forms part of the Secretariat of the Interior's administrative unit. It receives assistance and support from the Government Unit of SEGOB. The Gaming Bureau's role is to issue relevant gaming permits to businesses that want to offer casino games, bets, and lotteries at physical establishments and online casinos.

Gambling and gaming in Mexico is a federal matter, and the Federal Gaming and Raffles Law and Regulations apply throughout the country. All businesses offering gambling games or access to betting activities require prior authorization from the Gaming Bureau.

Without the Gaming Bureau's licenses, a casino business can't legally apply for or open bank or merchant accounts, use electronic payment providers or lawfully buy gaming content for customers to enjoy.

SEGOB's Gaming Bureau doesn't only have the authority to assign gaming and gambling permits to those it deems fit. The Secretariat of the Interior also enforces Mexico's rules and laws on all gambling and betting activities in Mexico.

Popular Online Casinos Licensed by SEGOB

Currently, several online casinos operate in Mexico with the proper authorization from the Mexican Gaming Bureau.

The Gaming Bureau's permit approval process requires information and documentation that validates the entity and confirms the establishment's integrity.

There are various criteria for different types of gambling activities; however, most applicants need to submit the following:

Individual background investigations:

Applicants must submit their name, nationality, addresses, curriculum vitae, and an affidavit verifying no previous criminal record.

Financial criteria:

Casinos need to provide property statements, an affidavit declaring no history of bankruptcy, and a credit report from a recognized credit provider. Legal entities must file copies of the corporation's balance sheets and statements of income and deeds.

Applying for a SEGOB Gambling License

A gambling license allows a business to offer Mexican players casino games, like Texas hold'em, bingo, slots, and virtual casino tables. Permits allow raffles, lotteries, fantasy, sports, horse racing, and greyhound racing bets too.

An online casino must complete and sign applications and comply with operating terms to obtain a Mexican gambling license.

Applicants must supply forms and original documentation in Spanish and file them at The Secretaría de Gobernación's offices in Mexico City.

Policies require cash control, remote betting, and internal control systems. Compliance demands centralized data recordings, access to proof of unique account identifiers, and awareness of gambling rights.

The government issues administrative authority to gambling providers. However, the license type determines permissions and is valid for defined periods.

Restrictions include ceasing credit offerings and activities not stated in the gambling license and prohibiting services to minors or those influenced by drugs or alcohol.

Casinos need permission before changing addresses and can't transfer or sell a license. Conditions prevent shareholders from regions with preferential taxes, the Bureau requires shareholder change reports, and share acquisition through trusts is also forbidden.

The Pros and Cons of Applying for the SEGOB Online Casino License

Pros:

  • A gambling license legalizes a remote bet or game played over the internet, anywhere in the world.
  • Mexican players can click on a site to explore a casino, enjoy their favorite game, or place a bet.
  • Financial and criminal background investigations are mandatory.
  • It lets players play with confidence and protects an individual's information.
  • A license adds to an online casino's reputation and informs players which site or page they can trust.

Cons:

  • A business must comply with specific operating terms.
  • Submission of license applications must be in Spanish and filed in Mexico City.
  • Local and federal taxes apply, and some states have player tax.
  • SEGOB can deny license renewals and revoke a license as it sees fit.
  • There are different license types for gaming, betting, and lotteries.
  • It restricts the casino to games declared within a license type.
  • A gambling license is only valid for a limited period.

Domestic Laws and Restrictions Set by the Secretaría de Gobernación

The Special Tax on Production Services Law means license holders are liable for 30% federal taxes on earnings. The country also requires 2% governmental duties payable to SEGOB.

Player fees apply too. Yucatan, for example, enforces a 10% tax on all player transactions. Plus, special fees apply to winners participating in gambling acts.

The Ministry of the Interior monitors gambling games and imposes fines of MXN 100 to 10,000 to ensure compliance. Other punishments include suspension, denying gambling license renewals, revoking permits, closure, and up to 15 days' imprisonment.

The country's gaming commission has revoked gambling licenses. SEGOB authorities have also blacklisted and closed a number of establishments for non-compliance.

Non-gambling legislation

Federal Laws require license holders to comply with the Prevention and Identification of Transactions with Funds from Illegal Sources and Prevention and Identification of Transactions with Illegal Resources established in Mexico's anti-money-laundering legislation.

An online casino must follow the country's Labour and Employment Laws too. These laws specify a legal minimum wage, maximum working days per week, and overtime.

Trademark laws apply to intellectual property and software licensing. And music, graphics, photographs, or artwork used in games are subject to copyright laws.

Privacy laws also regulate the use of information and data gathered and stored by an online casino and its systems.

History of SEGOB

Mexico has had Federal Gaming and Raffles Laws since 1947. Initially, the country's laws limited legal gambling to raffles, games, and sporting events. All other forms of gambling in Mexico are illegal and prohibited.

The Supreme Court determined both the individual state and the federal government had the authority to impose taxes on draws and cross-betting games in 2003.

In 2004, regulation additions included gambling games and bingo as legal acts, which saw 105,000 employed by the gambling industry.

The legal framework was amended further in 2012 and 2014 to accommodate modern-day casino play and the addition of Articles 85 and 104.

Article 85 allowed remote betting and legalized bets on the internet, and Article 104 legalized online draws.

Today, the country regulates the market through different types of gambling licenses and permits granted by SEGOB.

The Tax Authority and the Ministry of the Interior monitor gambling and online play to maintain trust, a good reputation, and industry stability.

Rules require cash systems that connect to the Tax Authority and provide complete reports on a casino page or site.

Article 5 of the Federal Gaming and Raffles Law states a gambling establishment or business is responsible for prohibiting persons under 18 years old from participating in all forms of gambling.

The Secretariat of the Interior places responsibility for reminding players of their rights and the duty to gamble responsibly on gambling providers.

An online casino is also responsible for ensuring those under the influence of prohibited substances or intoxicated may not make bets or play games.

About the author
Priya Sharma
Priya Sharma
About

Mumbai-born Priya is India's rising star in the realm of online casino guides. With a knack for fusing traditional Indian gaming narratives with cutting-edge digital dynamics, she's an essential bridge between classic and contemporary gaming for a vast Indian audience.

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FAQ

Everything you need to know about casinos

Is gambling legal in Mexico?

Yes, gambling in Mexico is legal. However, a casino must obtain the correct authorization through the Secretariat of the Interior and comply with Mexico's operating conditions. Casinos must also pay relevant federal and local taxes, provide regular reports to the Tax Authority, and protect their members' personal information and data.

Are there casinos in Mexico?

Yes, Mexico has a number of active casinos and several types of gambling facilities for players to enjoy. According to reports, there are currently 379 casinos and authorized establishments offering classic casino games and accepting fantasy, sport, horse, and greyhound racing bets in Mexico City and across 28 Mexican states.

Can you gamble online in Mexico?

Yes, Mexico allows its citizens to access their favorite games or place a bet remotely over the internet on casino sites all over the world. However, only online casinos with the proper authorization from Mexico's internal governing authority, SEGOB, are legally permitted to provide gaming and gambling services in Mexico.

Does Mexico tax gambling winnings?

Yes, Mexico taxes winnings. Both federal and state government taxes apply. However, winners aren't responsible for paying the taxes as Mexico requires gambling license holders to withhold taxes and pay them on the winner's behalf. Federal tax rates are 1%, and state tax rates vary between 4%-6% of the winnings.

How old do you have to be to gamble in Mexico?

The legal gambling age in Mexico is 18 years old, and anyone under 18 years of age is considered a minor. A casino is legally obligated to request age verification from its customers and prohibited by law from providing access to any gambling-related activity to those considered minors in Mexico.