PLAYERS’ RULES - THE NATIONAL BINGO GAME
We are the National Bingo Game Association Limited, a company limited by guarantee, whose registered office is at Lexham House, 75 High Street North, Dunstable, Bedfordshire LU6 1JF (we, NBGA).
The NBGA is licenced by the Gambling Commission and organises the National Game and other games of bingo for participating licensed bingo clubs.
These are the National Bingo Game Players’ Rules issued by the NBGA in November 2020. These rules apply to the playing of the National Bingo Game, a game of bingo played under the Gambling Act 2005, that allows players the opportunity to win a house prize, a nationally available jackpot prize and where advertised instant or bonus prizes. These rules supersede and replace all prior versions of the Player Rules for the playing of the Game.
In these rules, where we refer to you, we mean each person who buys a ticket to play the Game and your shall be interpreted accordingly.
The club from where you play the Game will also have its own arrangements and rules applicable to your attendance at the club and the playing of other games in club and the purchase of tickets to play bingo. These rules cover the playing of the Game in all clubs and supersede any house rules that might otherwise apply to the playing of games of bingo in your club. However, they do not affect any other arrangements or agreement between you and your club including those for the sale and purchase of tickets to play the Game.
Players should always gamble responsibly and play the Game within their limits. For more information and advice visit www.begambleaware.org.
1 Definitions and interpretation
1.1 In these Players’ Rules the following words shall have the following meanings:
Claim: means a claim made by a player that his or her Ticket is a winning Ticket that entitles him or her to receive a prize on that playing of the National Game.
Club Manager: the persons with overall responsibility for the day to day operation of the club at which you are playing and / or any members of staff at that club appointed to perform management functions. Members of Club Management may include one or more club manager from time to time.
Club Prize: a prize designated by the NBGA to be a club or a house prize offered on a playing of the Game.
EBT means the electronic bingo terminal on which you may play the Game.
Electronic Ticket: means an electronic ticket approved by the NBGA for use in the playing of the Game using an EBT.
Game: means the game of bingo organized by the NBGA and known as the National Bingo Game, the National and the NBG. The Game is a full house game of bingo but may be offered for a different game configuration specified by the NBGA.
National Prize: means a jackpot, instant or bonus prize designated by the NBGA to be a national prize for the playing of a Game. National Prizes can be won in more than one club. For the avoidance of doubt, a prize can still be designated a National Prize even though, by virtue of the random generation of numbers, that prize could only ever have been won in one club.
Paper Ticket: means a paper ticket approved by the NBGA for use in the playing of the Game.
Stake: is an amount equal to the price of the Ticket (as set by the NBGA) less the participation fee allocated to the price of that Ticket. The Stake is collected to fund the Club Prizes and National Prizes on that playing of the Game.
Ticket: means a Paper Ticket and / or an Electronic Ticket, depending on the context.
2 Minimum Age to play
You must be at least 18 years old to play the Game.
3.1 The Game can only be played with Tickets approved for use by the NBGA. Depending on the policies of the club at which you are playing, you may play with only Paper Tickets or with only Electronic Tickets or with both.
3.2 The Ticket price includes an amount known as the participation fee and the Stake.
3.3 Tickets may be purchased with two grids of numbers (twenty numbers available to mark in two grids of ten numbers) or five grids of numbers (fifty numbers available to mark in five grids of ten numbers). Unless otherwise indicated by the club for a particular playing of a Game, individual or alternative grids are not valid for the playing of the Game.
3.4 You must not damage or deface any Paper Tickets that you wish to play with and before play of the Game commences you must check that the security and serial numbers on each Paper Ticket are clearly legible. Your club will replace any damaged or defaced Paper Tickets at any time before the sale of Tickets for that Game has closed.
3.5 If a player makes a Claim on a damaged or defaced Ticket the NBGA will have final discretion to decide whether that Ticket is eligible for a prize.
3.6 As soon as the opening and closing Ticket details are shown on the indicator board(s) or are otherwise announced at your club, you should check that the serial numbers on each of your Paper Tickets are within the sequence shown. If you are playing with an EBT you should check that it appears to be operating properly. If you encounter a problem with either you should immediately contact a member of staff at the club and return the Paper Tickets or the EBT before playing of that Game commences.
4.1 It is the responsibility of the club to:
4.1.1 display and/or announce:
(a) win criteria for all available prizes offered by the NBGA on that playing of the Game; and
(b) an estimate of how much the House Prize will be for that playing of the Game.
4.2 If there is more than one winning Ticket for a National Prize and unless the NBGA have notified your club otherwise, each of the winning Tickets will win the advertised prize fund for that National Prize. However, if the Game is only being played for a Club Prize and there is more than one winning Ticket of that Club Prize, the Club Prize will be shared by the holders of the winning Tickets equally.
5 PLAYING THE NATIONAL GAME
5.1 The NBGA reserves the right to change the game configuration and to introduce additional elements or win criteria to the Game for subsequent game sessions.
5.2 Subject to Rule 5.1, the Game features a Club Prize and a National Prize.
5.3 Paper Tickets: If you are playing with a paper Ticket you must mark off the numbers called in such a way that it can be easily checked. It is essential that you do not obscure the serial number, perm number / plate number on the Ticket. Circles, the use of dabbers or underlining are recommended markings.
5.4 Electronic Tickets: EBT’s must be operated in accordance with the user instructions and any directions given in your club so that it will properly mark off the numbers called on the display.
5.5 The numbers to be called on each playing of the Game are selected by the NBGA from a random sequence of numbers and are supplied electronically to your club.
5.6 The person designated as the caller at your club is expected to call the numbers three times using the proper name first e.g. twenty-two. Once the caller has started to call the first syllable of a number, the calling of that number will be completed and that number becomes the last number called.
5.7 Occasionally there is a discrepancy between a number actually called and a number which should have been called. If this situation arises your club should stop the playing of that Game and take a decision to either re-call the entire game or to re-call from the number that was incorrectly called. The Club Manager’s decision is final and must be respected.
5.8 Sometimes, it may be necessary to cancel or abandon a playing of the Game or declare a prize win to be invalid. This situation is further discussed at Rule 7.
5.9 If you believe you have a Claim it is your responsibility to immediately stop the playing of that Game at your club. You should do this by calling out audibly. On hearing a call for a Claim, your club should stop play while your Ticket is checked. Please note that you will lose any right to claim that prize if you fail to have the playing of that game stopped before the caller has started to call the next number.
5.10 Where the Game is being played for a National Prize, the winners of that National Prize will be the player(s) across all of the participating clubs to validly mark off (or cause their EBT to mark off) all the numbers on a Ticket grid within the applicable win criteria.
5.11 The criteria required to win a jackpot, instant or bonus prize is set by the NBGA and the NBGA reserves the right to change the criteria for subsequent Games.
5.12 If a playing of a Game features a National Prize which is not won, the NBGA will transfer to a designated bank account an amount equal to the Stake of each Ticket sold for that playing of the Game and retain it for use in funding future National Prizes at subsequent playing(s) of the Game.
5.13 A winning Ticket will only win one National Prize. This is the highest single prize capable of being won by a Ticket. So if a National Prize with different win criteria is offered on the playing of a particular Game the available prize fund is calculated on the basis that those prizes capable of being won on the lower winning criteria will be disregarded and added to the prize fund available to the winner of the highest winning criteria if the higher criteria are achieved. For example, if a jackpot prize of £1,000 is offered to the player who makes a successful Claim within 20 calls and a £100 prize was offered for a successful Claim within 24 calls, the holder of a Ticket who makes a successful Claim on the 18th call would receive £1,000 and not £1,100 despite a claim on 18 calls also being a claim within 24 calls.
6 MAKING A CLAIM TO A PRIZE
6.1 All Claims to be a winner of any prize offered on the Game are subject to scrutiny and verification by your club and by the NBGA. Any dispute as to whether a Claim was validly made or whether a Ticket is valid is subject to the NBGA’s Complaints Procedure provided for in Rule 9 below.
6.2 In order to have a Claim checked you must make your winning Ticket or the EBT on which you made your winning Claim available to the Club Manager. The Club Manager will inspect the Ticket to ascertain that it is not damaged or to ensure that the EBT is working. Even if the Club Manager has indicated that a Claim is valid, that Claim and the Ticket or EBT on which the Claim was made will be subject to further scrutiny by the NBGA under Rule 6.9.
6.3 Having made a Claim, your club will check whether that Claim is valid. If your club considers, for any reason, that a Claim is invalid or that there is a basis for dispute as to the validity of the Claim, it shall cause the playing of that Game to be re-opened and the calling of the numbers to continue until there are one or more subsequent Claims.
6.4 Winners of a Club Prize or a National Prize must hand over the winning Tickets to the Club Manager of the club where the prize was won so that the Ticket can be inspected.
6.5 On handing over his or her Ticket to the Club Manager the player should obtain an official NBGA receipt for the Ticket (whether it is a paper Ticket or an electronic Ticket).
6.6 If more than one Claim is made for a National Prize and it transpires that a duplicate Ticket (either paper or electronic) has been issued, then, in the absence of dishonesty on the part of a player, the relevant National Prize will be paid in full to all winning Tickets. If your club suspects dishonesty, the relevant National Prize may be withheld from the player who your club suspects may have acted dishonestly.
6.7 Subject always to Rules 6.8 and 6.9:
6.7.1 Club Prizes won on the playing of the Game, will be paid by the club where the successful Claim was made at the end of the Game session;
6.7.2 Winners of National Prizes will be notified in the club at the time of the win how the prize will be paid.
6.7.3 If a Game features a jackpot, instant or bonus prize that is not a Club Prize or a National Prize, details of how it will be paid will be announced at each club in advance of the playing of the relevant Game.
6.8 Players must be over 18 years of age to play the Game and may be required to provide evidence to prove his or her age as a condition of receiving a prize. Such evidence can be an original passport or a driving licence with photo-card or other form of photographic identification acceptable to the Club Manager.
6.9 All Claims and winning Tickets may be subject to additional scrutiny and verification by the NBGA which the NBGA will undertake within 14 days after the playing of the relevant Game. In determining the validity of any Claim or any Ticket the NBGA will follow a fair procedure so that:
6.9.1 The NBGA will perform its own inspection of the winning Ticket and consider any information about the Claim provided to it by the Club Manager;
6.9.2 If the NBGA is minded to reject a Claim (even one in which a prize has been paid), it will write to the player in question informing him or her of any issues observed and inviting him or her to provide comments to the NBGA in writing within 7 days of receipt of the letter;
6.9.3 Provided the NBGA receives comments in writing from the player within such 7 day period, the NBGA will give due consideration to those comments in reaching its final decision;
6.9.4 The NBGA will issue its final decision within 28 days of the Game being played;
6.9.5 The NBGA may withhold the payment of any prizes while a Claim is being investigated under this Rule 6.9;
6.9.6 If within the 28 day period referred to in Rule 6.9.4, the NBGA concludes that a prize was won on an invalid Claim, it may require you to forfeit and /or repay that prize within 28 days.
6.9.7 The NBGA’s decision will be binding on the player, subject to your rights under Rule 9.
7.1 Occasionally, because of circumstances beyond the reasonable control of the NBGA or the club that you are playing at (including, without limitation, acts of God, technical problems or equipment failure), we may consider it necessary to cancel, abandon or interrupt the playing of a Game.
7.2 In these circumstances, the Club Manager may choose to play a house game instead of the Game using all the money collected at that club as Stake on the Ticket(s) sold on the Game that was cancelled, abandoned or interrupted. The house game will be played under the club’s house rules and will not be subject to these Player Rules.
8 REDUCED LIABILITY OF THE NBGA
8.1 Subject to Rule 8.2:
8.1.1 If you win a prize on the playing of the Game, neither the NBGA nor the club from where you purchased the winning Ticket is liable for more than the cash equivalent value of the National Prize and / or Club Prize and / or jackpot, bonus or instant prize that the NBGA determine to have been actually won on that Ticket;
8.1.2 if a Game is cancelled, abandoned or interrupted for any reason the total liability of both the NBGA and the club who sold you the Ticket shall not together exceed the price you paid for your Tickets to play that Game.
8.1.3 neither the NBGA nor any club shall be liable to any person for any unforeseen or indirect loss or damage (including damage to reputation, loss of profit or consequential loss or damage) arising from the playing of the Game by you; and
8.1.4 neither the NBGA nor any club shall have any liability to any person for any loss, charge, costs, expenses or other claims for compensation arising out of a player’s failure to comply with these Players’ Rules.
8.2 Nothing in these Players’ Rules shall limit any liability which cannot legally be limited including, without limitation:
8.2.1 the liability of the NBGA or any club for death or personal injury caused by negligence;
8.2.2 fraud or fraudulent misrepresentation or
8.2.3 other rights available to you as a consumer.
8.3 No variation to these Player’s Rules is effective unless it is in writing and is displayed at the club your Ticket was purchased from before the sale of Tickets begins for the playing of the Game in question.
9 COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE
9.1 We hope you do not have cause to complain about the operation of the Game but if you do, you should first try to resolve the matter informally with the Club Manager of the club at the time. If the Club Manager is unable to resolve the matter to your satisfaction, you may escalate your complaint to the NBGA by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by writing to the NBGA at Lexham House, 75 High Street North, Dunstable, Beds LU6 1JF who will endeavour to resolve the dispute within 14 days of receipt of your complaint. If neither the Club Manager nor the NBGA have been able to resolve your complaint to your satisfaction, you may further escalate the complaint to an independent dispute resolution provider, details of which are available from the NBGA or from your Club Manager or at www.ibas-uk.com.
10.1 Where the NBGA is required to exercise its discretion over any matter under these Players’ Rules, it shall exercise that discretion reasonably and in good faith. If you are not satisfied at the outcome of the NBGA’s decision you should exercise your rights under the Complaints Procedure explained at Rule
10.2 The NBGA will only use any personal information provided by or about you for the purpose of organising and administering the Game or for crime prevention purposes.
10.3 Nothing in these Players’ Rules gives any right to any third party to enforce any provision under the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 or otherwise.
10.4 These Players’ Rules are subject to English law.