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All venue operators are required to submit unclaimed winnings every year to the State Revenue Office (SRO).
Unclaimed winnings are defined as winnings from the playing of a gaming machine, including winnings in the form of:
ticket or other instrument authorising the payment of winnings from a gaming machine
any coins left in the coin tray of a gaming machine.
Under the Gambling Regulation Act 2003, venue operators are required to submit unclaimed winnings to the State Revenue Office (SRO).
As at 1 March each year, all winnings as specified above (irrespective of their dollar amount) that have been unclaimed for more than 12 months must be submitted to the SRO. Venue operators have until the 31 May of that same year to make the submission.
It is recommended that venue operators do not leave the assessment and reconciliation of unclaimed winnings until they are due for payment.
In section 2.2 (v) of the Accounting and Auditing Venue Requirements (AAVR) venue operators must, on a daily basis, review the status of all tickets issued the previous trading day in order to ensure that all tickets that have been paid have been correctly redeemed on the monitoring system at the time. This ensures that a complete and accurate list of unclaimed tickets is maintained on the monitoring system and will assist venue operators to meet their annual obligation, as the report generated by the monitoring system on 1 March will be a genuine reflection of all unclaimed tickets.
Although “reasonable expenses” may be deducted from the total amount submitted to the SRO, this does not include the cost of complying with this obligation (activities such as cost of running reports, locating paid tickets and accessing the SRO website are compliance activities). “Reasonable expenses” mean any reasonable cost incurred trying to locate the rightful owner of any individual unclaimed winning amount.
The VCGLR utilises the monitor’s reports and actual tickets redeemed (or copies of the tickets) as the source of data on unclaimed winnings. Evidence of a ticket’s redemption solely by way of your third party gaming reconciliation software is not relevant when submitting unclaimed winnings.
Submitting unclaimed winnings is a legislative requirement.
In previous years the VCGLR has adopted an educative approach to venue operators that fail to submit unclaimed winnings but, going forward, the VCGLR will be taking enforcement action if a venue operator fails to comply with this requirement.