A court in Hessen has ruled that restricting the number of internet sports betting licences to 20 in Germany is contrary to the European directive on freedom to trade (Dienstleistungsfreiheit (Art. 56 AEUV)).

The ruling has implications for Germany plans for the regulation of internet gambling. The arbitrary numerical limit on the number of licences is contrary to European law and the proposal to raise it from 20 to 40 is equally arbitrary. It could mean, therefore, that any operator who fulfils the licence conditions has the right to a licence.