Raffle/Bazaar Permits

Massachusetts law prohibits most forms of gambling, but permits raffles to be conducted by certain non-profit organizations. (MGL, Chapter 271, Section 7A). A nonprofit organization which can show it has been operating in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts or Wellesley for two or more years and has a charitable or civic purpose may apply for a raffle permit.

The fee for a raffle permit is $10 and is valid for one year. The organization may hold multiple raffle events during the permit year, but must report proceeds for each event as it is concluded. The organization must submit an annual report to the Town Clerk's office at the close of the permit period.


A Raffle is defined in MGL 271:7A as an arrangement for raising money by the sale of tickets, certain among which, as determined by chance after the sale, entitle the holder to prizes.


A Bazaar is defined in MGL 271:7a as a place maintained by the sponsoring organization for disposal by means of chance one or both of the following types of 1 merchandise of any 2 cash awards, not to exceed $250 each. A Casino night may also be considered a Bazaar.

The Attorney General has promulgated regulations, 940CMR12 and 13 regarding the conduct of raffles and bazaars.

Qualifications of Organization

  1. Type of Organization
    1. Veteran's organization
    2. Church or religious organization
    3. Fraternal organization
    4. Educational or charitable organization (including Public School Departments, parent - teacher organizations)
    5. Civic or service organizations
    6. Clubs organized and operated exclusively for pleasure, recreation, or other purposes
  2. Organized and Actively functioning as nonprofit organization in Wellesley
  3. Two years or more in existence

Purposes of Proceeds

Must be used exclusively for the purposes stated in the application and are limited to the following: educational, charitable, religious, fraternal, civic, or veteran's benefits.

Operation of the Raffle or Bazaar

Promotion of the raffle or bazaar must be confined to the members of the sponsoring organization. No member shall be compensated for time or effort devoted to the promotion of the event.


Applications shall be made the to town clerk of the town in which the raffle will be drawn. Tickets may be sold in several towns.

Application must contain the name and address of the applicant, evidence of qualification of the organization, names of three officers or members, purposes of the proceeds.

Filing Fee is $10 (Wellesley)