Sports betting is legal in many states. But which states is online sports betting legal? We’ve got the answer right here.
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Online sports betting is currently legal in four states – Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Bettors in these states can place wagers on a variety of sports through licensed online betting sites.
The legal landscape for online sports betting is constantly changing, with new states legalizing it every year. Currently, there are 20 states that have legalized sports betting in some form, with more expected to join in the near future.
Here is a list of the current status of online sports betting in each state:
Alabama – N/A
Alaska – N/A
Arizona – N/A
Arkansas – N/A
California – N/A
Colorado – Legal*
Connecticut – N/A
Delaware – Legal*
Florida – N/A
Georgia – N/A
Hawaii – Illegal Idaho – Illegal Illinois – Legal* Indiana – Legal Iowa – Legal Kansas – Illegal Kentucky – Illegal Louisiana – Illegal Maine – Legal Maryland – Illegal Massachusetts – Illegal Michigan – Illegal Minnesota – Illegal Mississippi – Illegal Missouri – Illegal Montana – Legal Nebraska – Illegal Nevada – Legal New Hampshire–Legal New Jersey–Legal New Mexico–Illegal New York–Illegal North Carolina–Illegal North Dakota–Illegal Ohio–Legal Oklahoma–Illegal Oregon–Legal Pennsylvania–Legal Rhode Island–N/A South Carolina–Illegal South Dakota–Illegal Tennessee–N/A Texas–Illegal Utah–Illegal Vermont–N/A Virginia–N/A Washington–Illegal West Virginia-Legal Wisconsin-Illegal Wyoming-N/A
The Federal Wire Act was enacted in 1961 and was intended to target illegal bookies. The law makes it illegal to place wagers on sporting events through wire communications. In 2011, the Department of Justice released a statement saying that the Wire Act applies only to sports betting and not other forms of gambling. Many people interpreted this to mean that online sports betting is now legal in the United States.
However, in May of 2018, the US Department of Justice issued a revised opinion on the Wire Act, stating that it applies to all forms of online gambling, not just sports betting. This effectively made online gambling illegal in the United States. As a result, many states have since passed laws specifically legalizing and regulating online gambling within their borders.
At this time, only a handful of states have legalized and regulated online gambling within their borders. These include Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Rhode Island. There are also a few states that have passed laws specifically legalizing online gambling, but have not yet implemented regulations or launched any licensed sites. These states include Michigan, Illinois, Indiana and Virginia.
Online sports betting is legal in some US states and illegal in others. The federal government has not enacted any laws specifically pertaining to online sports betting. This means that the decision of whether or not to allow online sports betting lies with each individual state. So far, only a handful of states have legalized online sports betting.
In Nevada, online and offline sports betting is legal. The only restriction is that bettors must be 21 years of age or older. There are no residency requirements.
In 2012, New Jersey passed a law that would allow sports betting to be offered at casinos and racetracks in the state. The law was challenged by the NCAA and major professional sports leagues, but in 2014, the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of New Jersey, saying that the state’s law did not violate federal law. In 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a federal law that had prohibited states from offering sports betting, clearing the way for New Jersey to offer legal sports betting.
Pennsylvania online sports betting is live as of May 28, 2019 following a unanimous vote by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) to approve interim regulations at a meeting on April 16, 2019.
The first sports bets were placed on May 28, at 12:34pm at Sugarhouse Sportsbook in Philadelphia followed by Parx Casino in Bensalem later that afternoon.
In Rhode Island, sports betting is only legal at the state’s two casinos, Twin River Casino in Lincoln and Tiverton Casino Hotel. Online and mobile sports betting is also available through the state’s official sports betting website. Betting on college sports is not allowed.
West Virginia sports betting became legal in March 2019. The first legal bets were placed in August. Online and mobile betting is available through BetLucky, which is operated by Delaware North. The BetLucky app is not currently available, but it is expected to return soon.
In the United States, only four states have legalized and regulated sports betting industries, with Nevada being the first. Delaware, Montana, and Oregon — along with Nevada — were given a limited exception to the federal ban on sports betting under the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) of 1992. These four states are allowed to offer a handful of sports wagering options, but not full-scale sportsbooks like those found in Las Vegas.
The other 46 states are not currently exempt from PASPA, which means that any form of sports betting is effectively illegal. However, many states are in the process of introducing or considering legislation that would allow them to offer some form of legal sports betting within their borders.
Until more states pass legislation regulating sports betting, bettors in the US will have to continue to find ways to place their bets off-shore or through illegal bookies.