Gaming and gambling

Buddle Findlay has specialist expertise in Class 4 gambling in New Zealand.  Clients benefit from our knowledge of recent legislation and regulation changes in this sector.


The industry has been severely re-regulated from 1 July 2004.  A limit on casinos has been imposed (no new casinos).  Although no statutory limits have yet been placed on gaming machine numbers, territorial local authorities have been given the power to regulate numbers and locations in their areas.  As a result, many have introduced "sinking-lid" policies and others capped number policies. 

Our team has been involved in the past on applications for casino licences and is currently advising on gaming machine licensing related matters.  We advised Pub Charity which was granted the first gaming machine licence in New Zealand in 1988.

We currently advise Endeavour Foundation, Infinity Foundation, The Trusts Charitable Foundation, Grassroots Trust and the Upper Hutt Cosmopolitan Club, all of which own and operate gaming machines.  We also advise grant recipients.

Areas of expertise include compliance advice, amending licences, applying for licences, advising on legislative changes, making submissions on new legislation, liaising and negotiating with the Department of Internal Affairs and appeals to the Gambling Commission.


Work highlights

New Zealand Gambling Law Guide

(click here to view online) peer reviewed by Alastair Sherriff

Advising on

Gambling Act compliance

Representing gaming machine societies

in challenges to Department of Internal Affairs proposals to suspend licences, cancel site approvals due to dual/multi-site location and/or due to “primary activity” issues and on other claimed legislative breaches

Obtaining a new gaming machine licence

in place of two previous licences, to ensure compliance with the Gambling Act

Assisting charitable societies

convert to not-for-profit companies in order to make grants for non-charitable purposes

Advising class 4 operators and their staff

on Department of Internal Affairs, Office of the Auditor-General and Audit New Zealand audits, investigations and inquiries

Our team

Alastair Sherriff

Consultant, Wellington

Alastair specialises in representing and providing alcohol licensing advice to medical officers of health…

Email Alastair Sherriff