PokerStars to Migrate German Players to EU Platform

PokerStars players in Germany are the next to be transitioned onto the new PokerStars.EU platform. The transition is expected to take place tomorrow, July 19.

As always, the transition is compulsory, although players will have an identical playing experience to before. The player pool is the same, the games and deposit options are unchanged, and there are no special restrictions. The only difference is the jurisdiction: PokerStars.EU is licensed and regulated by the LGA of Malta rather than in the Isle of Man, PokerStars’ primary regulator.

PokerStars.EU first went live in February 2012, and Swedish and Finnish players were first to be moved on to the new platform. Polish, Slovenian and Romanian players were reportedly moved over soon after. Players from the Netherlands moved in May. The addition of Germany takes the total to seven, although no official list has been made available by PokerStars.

One of the driving reason for establishing a PokerStars.EU was player taxation: Malta is part of the European Union and, according to some, players in certain countries need to pay tax on winnings from sites licensed outside an EU member state, but not inside.

In a statement to pokerfuse today, Eric Hollreiser, Head of Corporate Communications at PokerStars, said:

Regulatory developments within the European Union in recent years underscored that there are numerous advantages (for players and for PokerStars) to maintaining a base of operations in Malta, an EU member state where we hold a global e-gaming license. Since taking that license we have gradually transferred players from various EU countries to the Malta license in order to benefit from the EU regulatory environment.

Online gaming in Germany has become a tumultuous political issue of late. The new Online Gambling Act was ratified at the beginning of the month, that allows for a small number of online sportsbetting licenses but none for online poker. As expected, the new law has had little impact on players: The only operator known to have withdrawn from the German online poker market—one of the largest in Europe—is Nevada hopeful Paddy Power.

Thanks to @nerdsuperfly for the tip!