Dutch Court Overturns Previous Ruling: FIFA Ultimate Team Cards are Not Gambling
Money, money, money...
The Dutch Administrative Jurisdiction Division, the highest court in the Netherlands, overturned a 2020 ruling which classified the EA Sports’ FIFA Ultimate Team card packs as gambling. Polygon reported that the court’s new decision came from two considerations: the card packs are “not an isolated game” separate from the rest of FIFA Ultimate Team, and that the cards “add an element of chance to the game.” The court also noted that players who engage in the “black market” of trading these cards typically do so by trading an entire account rather than an individual pack.
Electronic Arts released the following statement regarding the ruling:
This decision confirms our belief that no aspect of FIFA or FIFA Ultimate Team can be considered gambling under Dutch law. At Electronic Arts our approach to game design puts choice, fun, fairness and value first. Our priority has always been to make sure that our players in the Netherlands and across the world have a positive experience.
The court also removed a €10 million fine imposed on Electronic Arts (EA). Previously, the court had ruled that EA would be required to pay a €500,000 fine for every week that FIFA Ultimate Team card packs were in the game, up to €10 million. EA did not remove the packs from sale.
To read the judicial opinion (in Dutch), click here.