Responsible & Regulated

Don’t buy lottery tickets for minors

by Natalie Belliveau

With the holidays fast approaching, Atlantic Lottery would like to remind adults that scratch tickets and other lottery products are not appropriate gifts for minors.

“Lottery tickets can be great last-minute gifts for the adults in your life, but not for anyone under the age of 19,” said Denise Pettis, Manager of Corporate Social Responsibility at Atlantic Lottery. “Retailers cannot control where tickets go once they are sold. This is why we are reminding people not to give these tickets to young people as gifts.”

Atlantic Lottery’s 3,000 retailers across Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador undergo responsible gambling training, and are subject to age of majority compliance. This season, as always, they will be asking for identification from anyone who looks 25 years of age or under. It’s a practice Atlantic Lottery has been highlighting through television spots and social media – and one they hope shoppers consider as well.

Why shouldn’t you buy tickets for minors?

“Research has shown that young people who play for money before the age of 19 are at higher risk of developing gambling problems later in life,” said Pettis, “Atlantic Lottery takes responsible gambling seriously. Our games are not for people under 19.”

How adults can help prevent underage gambling

  • Don’t buy lottery tickets for minors. Get gift cards, concert tickets, or vouchers for an age appropriate activity, but don’t buy lottery products.
  • Talk to your child: Encourage conversations about gambling. Atlantic Lottery’s website provides tips for adults about how to talk to children about gambling and to help them understand the risks associated with it.
  • Check online use:, verifies identity and age before customers are able to register for an account. Unregulated offshore internet gambling websites are not bound by Canadian laws to uphold such rigorous standards, making it easier for youth to access them. Young people today are the first generation to have easy access to such a wide variety of gambling opportunities.

Resources for support

If you have concerns with your gambling or someone else’s, support is just a phone call away.

New Brunswick | 1-800-461-1234
Newfoundland and Labrador | 1-888-899-HELP (4357)
Nova Scotia | 1-888-347-8888
Prince Edward Island | 1-855-255-4255