Online gambling is a relatively new concept, and many people are unsure about how it works and its legality. Several laws and court decisions have left users confused about whether they may gamble online or do so at the risk of breaking any laws. Federal and state laws govern gambling in the United States, and it is vital to read the two together.
These acts tend to have a broad scope, whereas state laws go into more detail. For example, the Wire Act prohibits wire communications to assist in making bets across state lines, but, according to a Department of Justice memorandum, this applies only to sports betting. The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act does not forbid online gambling, but it makes it illegal for banks to engage in transactions with unlicensed gambling sites.
State laws offer specific regulations and restrictions. They set up regulatory bodies to monitor and evaluate the enforcement and compliance with these laws. For example, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board governs Pennsylvania online gambling sites, licenses, and operations.
States that legalized online gambling
For those trying to apply one of the lazy man’s secrets to riches, here are some states that allow you to do so through online gambling:
As the US gambling capital, it is little surprise that Nevada was one of the first states to legalize online gambling. This includes online poker, mobile sports betting, horse race betting, and games of skill, where a gambler is playing against other players. This is different from games of chance, where a gambler bets against the house.
Pennsylvania online gambling became legal in 2017. Its state legislature released a gaming package aimed to build the market to aid with employment and tax revenues. The PGCB is active in ensuring that all online casinos are safe, licensed, and regulated. Casino games, including poker, are legal. So are daily fantasy sports and online horse racing betting.
Casino and poker sites, daily fantasy sports, and horse race betting are legal in New Jersey. The state was also more inclined than others to bring online gambling to residents and visitors as it has a rich gambling history, with iconic Atlantic City dominating it.
State laws passed in 2018 and 2019 make mobile sports betting, online casino games, and poker legal in West Virginia. Online horse racing betting was already allowed before these laws widened users’ online gambling options.