In a surprise act of compliance with Greek gaming laws, Rational Group has today moved its Greek online poker players to dot-GR websites, and introduced a daily withholding tax on winnings.
Winnings of €100 or higher are taxed at 15%, automatically withheld at the end of the day. The tax rate rises to 20% for daily winnings above €500. The impact of the new “Player Withholding Tax” is substantial: Calculated on a daily basis, it is impossible to net out losses from winnings over time. Money received through promotional bonuses and other prizes is thought to be exempt.
PokerStars.GR and FullTiltPoker.GR are now understood to be operating legally under license in the country, due to a partnership with Diamond Link Ltd.
No official licenses have been issued yet under the new gaming laws in Greece, but the company is one of 24 to hold an interim license. Diamond Link is based in Malta, and holds an LGA-issued remote gaming license.
The Greek client shares the same international player pool as its dot-com, dot-EU, dot-DK and dot-EE sites. However, certain tournaments with “larger prize pools” have been hidden in the Greek lobby. A new feature in options—“Hide Geographically Restricted Tournaments”—will turn them back on, but Greek players will be unable to register.
PokerStars says that it is negotiating to have this site delisted as soon as possible.