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Sports Single-event betting

In Canada— and consequently on PlayNow—the law forbids betting on single-sports events or athletic contests. The Government of Canada enacted this law in 1985 as a method to help prevent the incentive for match fixing, and is still in effect today.

As a result, PlayNow Sports is required legally to include two or more outcomes when offering any sports bet. This is called a “parlay,” in which a winning bet is dependent on each prediction being correct.

Any ‘Single’ markets that are offered on PlayNow Sports will be indicated with an ‘S’ icon. Simply make any pick from one of the selections available and you can make your bet without having to add another pick (if you so choose). If in doubt, once you have made a selection, the Bet Slip will display a notification if indeed a second pick is required to complete your bet.

As the restrictions in the Criminal Code apply specifically to sporting events and athletic contests, any betting offered under a non-sports category can be offered as ‘Singles’. PlayNow’s Novelty & Specials category includes betting on topics such as politics, entertainment, movies, TV, weather and even esports.

BCLC supports changes to the Criminal Code to allow single-event betting, and is prepared to offer single-event betting on PlayNow should those changes occur.

On February 25, 2020, the most recent attempt to legalize single-event sports betting in Canada was introduced in Parliament as a private member’s bill by Saskatoon-Grasswood Conservative MP Kevin Waugh. The Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act (Bill C-218) was tabled with cooperation from Windsor-West NDP MP Brian Masse. Bill C-218 seeks to amend s. 207 of the Criminal Code and, if finally passed, make it legal to bet on the outcome of a single sporting event in Canada.

If you would like to see single-event betting available on PlayNow, please reach out to your local Member of Parliament (MP) and let them know this issue is important to you and that this is change in law that you would support.

For more information, please review our bet types and sports betting glossary.