Because contracts of insurance have many features in common with wagers, insurance contracts are often distinguished under law as agreements in which either party has an interest in the “bet-upon” outcome beyond the specific financial terms. E.g.: a “bet” with an insurer on whether one’s house will burn down is not gambling, but rather insurance — as the homeowner has an obvious interest in the continued existence of his/her home independent of the purely financial aspects of the “bet” (i.e., the insurance policy). Nonetheless, both insurance and gambling contracts are typically considered aleatory contracts under most legal systems, though they are subject to different types of regulation.
Under common law, particularly English Law (English unjust enrichment), a gambling contract may not give a casino bona fide purchaser status, permitting the recovery of stolen funds in some situations. In Lipkin Gorman v Karpnale Ltd, where a solicitor used stolen funds to gamble at a casino, the House of Lords overruled the High Court’s previous verdict, adjudicating that the casino return the stolen funds less those subject to any change of position defence. U.S. Law precedents are somewhat similar.
Although different interpretations of sharia law exists in the Muslim world, there is a consensus among the ulema that gambling is haraam (sinful). In assertions made during its prohibition, Muslim jurists describe gambling as being both unquranic and as being generally harmful to the Muslim community. The Islamic terminology for gambling is maisarhowever this also has a second definition meaning easy money. In parts of the world that implement full sharia law such as Aceh, punishments for Muslim gamblers can range up to 12 lashes or a one-year prison term and a fine for those who provide a venue for such practises.
Image: Caravaggio, The Cardsharps, c. 1594, from en.wikipedia, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3171330