This a picture of various neon signs of casinos at night in Las Vegas. On this page you can find detailed information about gambling, online gambling, bingo, online bingo, non-profit bingo, poker, online poker, sports betting, wagering, online lottery and bitcoin gambling laws, rules, legislation in all 50 states of the United States of America.
Guide to the legal status of various forms of gambling and online gambling in the USA and in all 50 states and 5 territories

 

A study recently published came to the conclusion that in terms of online gambling, the USA’s gambling legislation is the most complex in the world (and I can definitely agree, this took 3 months to put together…). This makes the US online gambling market overly complicated for players and operators alike. I’m here to at least try to make it simple and easy to understand for players, as much as possible. Currently, out of the 50 states and 5 inhabited overseas territories 35 has legalized some form of online gambling, and online gambling (except horse and dog racing betting, online lottery and since 2018 online sports betting) is still illegal on a federal level (or at least financial transactions related to online gambling, see below, at UIGEA, to make it simpler, going forward, we assume it’s illegal on a federal level, unless specifically made legal by a state or territory, it’s definitely de facto illegal).

To date, as much as an estimated 72%* of the world’s online casinos are closed to US visitors (due to overly complex legal environment, and the hostility of certain states towards online gambling), which means that  it is not that easy for US players to find really good online casinos (especially a casino that has a sportsbook and poker as well, you can see them below).

First of all, US players are not prosecuted or fined in any way for playing in non-US online casinos and gambling websites. But in case of domestic, US-registered online operations, the online gambling website (with a few exceptions, see below) can only accept players from the state it is registered in.

Despite all this, domestic online gambling in the USA is definitely growing fast, and already, 35 US states and territories legalized some form of online gambling, and in the next 10 years this will probably increase to 40+.

Land-based gambling is as old as the USA itself (actually predates it, but games of chance only started to be legalized and regulated in the 19th century) and online gambling in the USA is legal since 2011, that year, the DOJ’s (Department of Justice) reversed its former stance on the Wire Act of 1961**. This made it possible for states to legalize intrastate online gambling.

And legal online sports betting in the US became a possibility in 2018, when The Supreme Court struck down the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act,*** which previously was interpreted in such a way that it made online sports betting impossible (except for horse and dog racing betting, which was legal in some states even before that).

Nevertheless, online gambling in the USA remains a complicated and a controversial topic. You can see a state by state breakdown below, and you can see the online casinos which accept American players below (most have poker and/or sports betting too).

 

 

Online casinos accepting players from the USA

The following online gambling websites accept players from the USA

 

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Playthrough requirements and wagering limitations

All bonuses and promotions are subject to the following wagering limitations and playthrough requirements.
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Wagering limitation:
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GT Bets Casino and Sportsbook

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Playthrough requirements and wagering limitations

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Earnings ($10)Sign Up Bonus PlaythroughReload Bonus (Varies by %) Playthrough
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Horses7.5 points for every $10 wagered8x4x-6.7x
Slots2 points for every $10 wagered30x15x-25x
Table1 point for every $10 wagered60x30x-50x
Video Poker1.5 points for every $10 wagered40x20x-33x
 
Wagering limitation:
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Bet Online Casino and Sports Book

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Playthrough requirements and wagering limitations

The deposit bonus amount must be wagered 40 times before withdrawal.
Playthrough requirement: • Slot Games (progressive jackpot slots excluded) 100% • Roulette (All versions), Draw High-Lo, 3 Card Rummy 20% • Baccarat, Blackjack (American & European), Poker 3, Oasis Poker, Single Deck Blackjack, Triple Edge Poker, Caribbean Poker, Three Card Poker, Video Poker 10% • Pirate 21, Blackjack Super 7, Pai Gow, 21 Burn, Ride’m Poker, All forms of Keno, Red Dog, Pontoon, Top Card Trumps 5% • Craps, Live Casino, All Games with Progressive Jackpots, Virtual Racebook. Speciality games ie Keno’s and Scratcher game offered by Betsoft 0%
Wagering limitation:
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Sources:

Online Gambling Access Around The World

**The complete text of the memo – Obama on gambling and online gambling in the USA, original intent of the Wire Act

***Murphy, Governor of New Jersey, et al. v. National Collegiate Athletic Association – Supreme Court of United States

 

Summary:

 

 

Legal status of online gambling in the USA – main pieces of the federal gamblign legisaltion

 

There are three acts with paramount importance: the Wire Act of 1961, and the UIGEA (Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act) signed into law in 2006, and the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act. Interpretations, reinterpretations, and contradictions of these two were decisive to the present legal status of online gambling in the USA. The latest two milestones of US online gambling regulations were the memo issued by the DOJ in 2011, and the judicial overturning of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act in 2018.

Details:

The Federal Wire Act of 1961
The Federal Wire Act of 1961 was part of a package of bills introduced by then US Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy in his attempt to fight organised crime. He sought to do this by cutting the funds of crime syndicates, which at the time consisted mainly of profits gained through illegal interstate bookmaking activities. These were in many cases conducted using the prominent telecommunications tools of the era, the telephone, and the telegraph. The section of the Act relevant to online gambling in the USA is the following:

“Whoever being engaged in the business of betting or wagering knowingly uses a wire communication facility for the transmission in interstate or foreign commerce of bets or wagers or information assisting in the placing of bets or wagers on any sporting event or contest, or for the transmission of a wire communication which entitles the recipient to receive money or credit as a result of bets or wagers, or for information assisting in the placing of bets or wagers, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than two years, or both.”

If you made your way through the quirky sentence, intuition probably tells you that it only applies to sports betting. According to several historic cases, most interpretations, and discussions and the enactment of the Act mentioned in the 2011 memo prove that it was indeed only meant to impose regulations on sports betting activities. Moreover, it only seems to address the technological infrastructure of the era it was crafted in.

In fact, many amendments proposed through the ’90s sought to make the act more technologically neutral, which suggests that the people proposing these amendments didn’t believe it applied to the internet, or anything besides what “wire communication facility” meant at the time of its enactment.

All this didn’t stop the US Department of Justice from interpreting the Act as a broad scale prohibition on gambling using any means of telecommunication, including the internet. Moreover, the Act only mentioned interstate transmissions expressly, but the reasoning of the DOJ for using the act to prohibit intrastate online gambling was that the internet and the telephone are inherently interstate media. Even today, online gambling is considered illegal on a federal level, largely due to the Wire Act.

*Wire Act and its effect on online gambling legislation is Michelle Minton’s white paper: The Original Intent of the Wire Act and Its Implications for State-based Legalization of Internet Gambling, from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas

UIGEA (Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act) - 2006

In 2009, the New York’s lottery division and the Illinois governor’s office wrote to the Department of Justice Criminal Division seeking an opinion on the legality of online lottery sales. While the Criminal Division asserted that offering lotteries online within the state would violate the Wire Act, they did acknowledge that such interpretation contradicts the UIGEA, which expressly excludes intrastate online gambling, making it legal.

The UIGEA was considered to be quite faulty in its phrasing, because actually it didn’t ban online gambling, nor did it define, what is unlawful internet gambling. Instead, it prohibited payment processors from processing transactions related to online gambling in the USA.

Another strange thing about the UIGEA is that it specifically exempts online horse race and greyhound betting. And this is why online horse and greyhound betting and online lottery are the only kinds of online gambling that were legal before 2006.

The DOJ Memo Reinterpreting the Wire Act

In 2011, partly in response to the New York lottery divisions inquiry, the DOJ released a memo*, which represented a 180 degrees reversal of their previous interpretation of the Wire Act. The memo declared that because lottery is not related to sports betting, it falls outside the scope of the Wire Act. The decision, (apart from allowing the state of Illinois to conduct online lottery), dispelled the ambiguity surrounding the Wire Act’s actual scope and it opened the door for states to legalize online gambling within their borders.

*The complete text of the memo on justice.gov

1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act
The 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, among other things, prohibited sports betting and online sports betting on a federal level (except harness and dog racing betting).  However, it was declared unconstitutional in 2018 by the Supreme Court, which opened the way for states and Native American tribes to engage in online sports betting. Asa direct result, 16 states have legalized online sports betting since 2018.

You can read the details here: Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992

 

The legal status of online gambling in the US, state-by-state

 

In total, 37 states & territories have legalized some forms of online gambling in the USA as of now:

 

Online gambling in most of these states and territories is only allowed on an intrastate basis. This means that e.g.: poker players from Nevada are only allowed to play poker against players from Nevada, and only on platforms offered specifically for the Nevada market.
However, this is slowly changing, and some interstate agreements were signed over the years. And there are still also many offshore gambling websites, which accept US players (they don’t have these limitations).

The two tables below summarize the legal status of different forms of gambling, online gambling in all the US states and territories, namely: casino gambling, bingo, poker, sports wagering, lottery, and other lottery like games like pull tabs. You can find a list of online gambling sites, which accept US players below the table.

 

Legal status of gambling in the USA in the 50 states and 5 territories

You will often see in the table below “illegal, Native American casinos only” in the casino gambling column, which can be confusing to people not intimately familiar with the US gambling situation (or the Canadian gambling situation, which is very similar). The Native American tribes are partially or wholly exempt form the limitations dictated by a state’s gambling legislation (but not the federal limitations, which apply to them as well). Therefore, you will see Native American casinos* in strongly anti gambling states, e.g.: states from the Bible Belt.

*’Native American’ casinos is preferred, ‘tribal casinos’ is also acceptable, but ‘Indian casinos’ is nowadays seen as impolite, politically incorrect, and it is not often used anymore in official context, but all three mean the same thing. First Nations is not used in conjunction with US tribes, that designation is exclusively used for Canadian aboriginals.

 

 Gambling in the USA – sorted by states and type
StateCasino
gambling
BingoPokerSports
betting
Lottery, scratch cards, keno
Alabamaillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlylegal, very restricted, only “social poker games” are allowedlegal, but only horse racing betting and dog racing bettingillegal
Alaskaillegallegal, but non-profit onlylegal, very restricted, only “social poker games” are allowed (small stakes between friends)legal, but only traditional Alaskan sports and activities, non-profit onlyillegal
Arizonaillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, non-profit onlylegal, small stakes social gambling only, except in tribal casinoslegal, horse and dog racing betting onlylegal, monopoly of Arizona State Lottery
Arkansaslegallegal, but non-profit onlylegal within casino onlylegallegal, keno is illegal, monopoly of Arkansas Scholarship Lottery
Californiaillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlylegal, in card clubs and Indian casinos onlylegallegal, monopoly of California State Lottery
Coloradolegal, restricted to Central City, Black Hawk and Cripple Creek + Indian casinoslegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Colorado Lottery
Connecticutillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlylegal, social gambling among friends and in Indian casinoslegal, horse racing, dog racing and jai alai betting onlylegal, monopoly of Connecticut Lottery
Delawarelegal, state owned casinos, owned by the Delaware Lotterylegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Delaware Lottery
Floridalegal + Native American casinoslegal, but non-profit onlylegal, in casinos or small stakes social gamblinglegal, horse racing, dog racing betting onlylegal, monopoly of Florida Lottery
Georgiaillegallegal, but non-profit onlyillegalillegallegal, monopoly of Georgia Lottery
Hawaiiillegalillegalillegal, except social gamblingillegalillegal
Idahoillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlyillegallegal, horse racing betting onlylegal, monopoly of Idaho Lottery
Illinoislegallegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Illinois State Lottery
Indianalegal + Native American casinoslegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Indiana Hoosier Lottery
Iowalegal + Native American casinoslegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Iowa Lottery Authority
Kansaslegal + Native American casinoslegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Kansas Lottery
Kentuckyillegal, but there are racinoslegalillegallegal, horse racing betting onlylegal, monopoly of Kentucky Lottery
Louisianalegal + Native American casinoslegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Louisiana Lottery Corporation
Mainelegal + Native American casinoslegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Maine State Lottery
Marylandlegallegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Maryland Lottery
Massachusettslegal + Native American casinoslegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Massachusetts State Lottery
Michiganlegal + Native American casinoslegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Michigan Lottery
Minnesotaillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlylegallegal, horse and dog racing betting onlylegal, monopoly of Minnesota State Lottery
Mississippilegal + Native American casinoslegal, but non-profit onlylegalillegalillegal
Missourilegal + Native American casinoslegal, but non-profit onlylegallegal, horse racing betting onlylegal, monopoly of Missouri Lottery
Montanaillegal, Native American casinos onlyillegallegallegallegal, monopoly of Montana Lottery
Nebraskaillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlyillegallegal, horse racing betting onlylegal, monopoly of Nebraska Lottery
Nevadalegal + Native American casinoslegallegallegalillegal
New Hampshireillegallegal, but non-profit onlylegal, but non-profit onlylegallegal, monopoly of New Hampshire Lottery
New Jerseylegallegallegallegallegal, the New Jersey Lottery
New Mexicolegal + Native American casinoslegallegallegallegal, monopoly of New Mexico Lottery
New Yorklegal + Native American casinoslegallegallegal, but fantasy sports betting is illegallegal, monopoly of New York Lottery
North Carolinaillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlyillegallegallegal, monopoly of North Carolina Education Lottery
North Dakotaillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlyillegalillegallegal, monopoly of North Dakota Lottery
Ohiolegallegal, but non-profit onlylegallegal, but fantasy sports betting is illegallegal, monopoly of Ohio Lottery Commission
Oklahomaillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlyillegallegallegal, monopoly of Oklahoma Lottery Commission
Oregonillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlylegal, but non-profit onlylegallegal, monopoly of Oregon Lottery
Pennsylvanialegallegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Pennsylvania Lottery
Rhode Islandlegallegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Rhode Island Lottery
South Carolinaillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlyillegalillegallegal, monopoly of South Carolina Education Lottery
South Dakotalegallegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of SD Lottery
Tennesseeillegallegal, but non-profit onlyillegalillegallegal, monopoly of Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation
Texasillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlyillegallegal, horse and dog racing betting onlylegal, monopoly of Texas Lottery Commission
Utahillegalillegalillegalillegalillegal
Vermontillegallegal, but non-profit onlyillegallegal, horse racing betting onlylegal, monopoly of Vermont Lottery
Virginiaillegal, but there are racinoslegal, but non-profit onlyillegallegallegal, monopoly of Vermont Lottery
Washingtonillegal, Native American casinos onlylegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Washington State Lottery
West Virginiaillegal, but there are racinos and Casino Club at The Greenbrierlegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of West Virginia State Lottery
Wisconsinillegal, not legal on a state level, but casinos and any form of table games are allowed, if the activity is approved through a local referendumlegal, but non-profit onlyillegallegal, horse racing betting onlylegal, monopoly of Wisconsin Lottery
Wyomingillegal, except racinos and Native American casinoslegal, but non-profit onlyillegallegal, horse racing betting onlylegal, monopoly of
WyoLotto

 

US overseas unincorporated territories

 

 Gambling in the US territories – sorted by type
TerritoryCasino gamblingBingoPokerSport bettingLottery
American Samoaillegallegal, but non-profit onlyillegalillegalillegal
Guamillegallegal, but non-profit onlylegal, but restricted to Liberation day Parade and Carnival onlyillegalillegal
Northern Mariana Islandslegallegal, but non-profit onlylegalillegallegal, monopoly of
NMSA
Puerto Ricolegallegal, but non-profit onlylegallegallegal, monopoly of Puerto Rico Treasury Department
US Virgin Islandslegallegal, but non-profit onlylegalillegallegal, monopoly of Virgin Islands Lottery

 

Legal status of Online Gambling in the USA in the 45 States and 5 Territories

Even though, as you will see, most forms of online gambling are illegal in most states, the truth is that it should be “technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined” instead. There is no enforcement when it comes to ordinary players and players are not prosecuted or fined in any of the states. Companies know this very well, and many (registered and headquartered overseas) accept American players, despite it being illegal in the USA (but not in the country where these companies are registered, from their point of view they are not breaking the law. It is certainly unethical, but not technically illegal but with their gambling licenses it’s perfectly okay.

 

 Online gambling in the USA – sorted by states and type
StateOnline casino
gambling
Online BingoOnline PokerOnline sports
betting
Online lottery, scratch cards, kenoBitcoin gambling
Alabamaillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Alaskaillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Arizonaillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Arkansasillegalillegalillegalillegallegal, monopoly of Arkansas Scholarship Lotterynot specifically regulated
Californiaillegalillegalillegallegal, only online horse racing bettinglegal, monopoly of California State Lotterynot specifically regulated
Coloradoillegalillegalillegallegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Connecticutillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Delawarelegalillegallegal on sites licensed by the statelegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Floridaillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Georgiaillegalillegalillegalillegallegal, monopoly of Georgia Lotterynot specifically regulated
Hawaiiillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Idahoillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Illinoisillegalillegalillegallegallegal, monopoly of Illinois State Lotterynot specifically regulated
Indianaillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Iowaillegalillegalillegallegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Kansasillegalillegalillegallegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Kentuckyillegalillegalillegallegal, only online horse racing bettinglegal, monopoly of Kentucky Lotterynot specifically regulated
Louisianaillegalillegalillegallegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Maineillegalillegalillegalillegallegal, monopoly of Maine State Lotterynot specifically regulated
Marylandillegalillegalillegallegal, only online horse racing bettingillegalnot specifically regulated
Massachusettsillegalillegalillegallegal, only online horse racing bettingillegalnot specifically regulated
Michiganlegalillegallegallegallegal, monopoly of Michigan Lotterynot specifically regulated
Minnesotaillegalillegalillegallegal, only online horse and dog racing bettingillegalnot specifically regulated
Mississippiillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Missouriillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Montanaillegalillegalillegalillegalillegal, except raffles by non-profit organizationsnot specifically regulated
Nebraskaillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Nevadaillegalillegallegallegalillegalnot specifically regulated
New Hampshireillegalillegalillegallegallegal, monopoly of New Hampshire i-Lotterynot specifically regulated
New Jerseylegalillegallegallegallegal, monopoly of New Jersey Lotterynot specifically regulated
New Mexicoillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
New Yorkillegalillegalillegalillegallegal, but subscriptions to the New York Lottery only, not individual ticketsnot specifically regulated
North Carolinaillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
North Dakotaillegalillegalillegallegallegal, monopoly of North Dakota Lotterynot specifically regulated
Ohioillegalillegalillegalillegallegal, monopoly of Ohio Lottery Commissionnot specifically regulated
Oklahomaillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Oregonillegalillegalillegallegallegal, monopoly of Oregon Lotterynot specifically regulated
Pennsylvanialegalillegallegallegallegal, monopoly of PA iLotterynot specifically regulated
Rhode Islandillegalillegallegallegallegal, monopoly of RI iLotterynot specifically regulated
South Carolinaillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
South Dakotaillegalillegalillegallegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Tennesseeillegalillegalillegallegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Texasillegalillegalillegallegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Utahillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Vermontillegalillegalillegallegal, only online horse racing bettingillegalnot specifically regulated
Virginiaillegalillegalillegallegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Washingtonillegalillegalillegallegal, only online horse racing bettingillegalnot specifically regulated
West Virginialegalillegallegallegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Wisconsinillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Wyomingillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated

 

US overseas unincorporated territories

 

Online gambling in the US territories – sorted by type
TerritoryOnline casino gamblingOnline BingoOnline PokerOnline sport bettingOnline lotteryBitcoin Gambling
American Samoaillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Guamillegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Northern Mariana Islandsin the process of being legalizedin the process of being legalizedin the process of being legalizedillegalillegalnot specifically regulated
Puerto Ricoin the process of being legalizedillegalillegallegallegal, monopoly of Puerto Rico Treasury Departmentnot specifically regulated
US Virgin Islandslegalillegalillegalillegalillegalnot specifically regulated

 

 

When it comes to gambling, The Federal Republic of United States of America is really not united at all. In fact, out of all the federal republics I investigated (e.g.: Canada, India – at this point I have investigated all 169 countries recognized by the United Nations, over a period of 9 years) the USA is the least united, by far, in terms of gambling, even though the federal government really tries to hide this fact (probably for political reasons and for internal stability). But when someone looks at the regulations of gambling in the USA, it becomes obvious, very quickly. And if you really delve into the info below, you will see it as well.

To understand the situation of gambling in all the 45 states below, one needs to investigate the 3 main sectors in each states, these are: 1., commercial, for profit gambling, 2., non-profit gambling by 501 (c) registered charities for fundraising purposes, 3., and Native American tribal gambling, which always has special privileges, operating partially or wholly outside of the limitations set by a state’s gambling legislation.

 

Gambling in all 50 states of the USA

Click on the drop down menus below for details.

Alabama

Alabama gambling law

The main forms of gambling in the state are sports betting, bingo and tribal casinos of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians. Interestingly, this is one of the states where lottery is illegal. However, players who play online are not prosecuted (but illegal “offline”, brick & mortar gambling is, even small stakes games, be careful, social gambling is illegal).

Additionally Alabama has many electronic bingo parlours which feature slot machine like electronic bingo machines, the legality of such gambling venues is different in each county, and to complicate things even further, often they are owned by Native American tribes.

 

Casino gambling Alabama:  illegal, tribal casinos only + 1 racino

Online casino gambling Alabama: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Alabama: legal, but non-profits only

Online bingo Alabama: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Alabama: legal, very restricted, only “social poker games” are allowed (small stakes between friends)

Online poker Alabama: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Alabama: legal, but only horse racing betting and dog racing betting, and only in 300+ K cities, there are no cities with over 300 000 inhabitants in Alabama but metropolitan areas also qualify by bending the rules somewhat, no horse race tracks, but two dog racing tracks in Birmingham and Mobile

Online sports betting Alabama: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some sportsbooks might be blocked

Lottery Alabama: illegal

Online lottery Alabama: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Alabama: not specifically regulated

 

 

Regulatory body Alabama: Alabama Department of Revenue

 

Available gambling licences in Alabama (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • charity raffle, bingo (only non-profit organizations are eligible, charity must be in operation for 2+ years)
  • skill games, coin games licence

 

No state lottery. Fantasy football, fantasy sports betting is legal.

 

Gambling tax Alabama:

  • fantasy sports betting companies – 10.5% tax
  • Indian casinos pay no gambling tax
  • non-profit gambling is tax-exempt

 

horse racing betting:

  • 2% tax rate,  tax base is the horse racing handle – does not exceed $150,000,000
  • 4% tax rate,  tax base is the horse racing handle  – if it  exceeds $150,000,000

 

dog racing betting:

  • 2% tax rate,  tax base is the horse racing handle – does not exceed $150,000,000, if the race track has been in operation for less than 10 years
  • 4% tax rate,  tax base is the horse racing handle  – if it  exceeds $150,000,000, if the race track has been in operation for less than 10 years

and if the race track has been in operation for more than 10 years

  • 2% tax rate,  tax base is the horse racing handle – does not exceed $150,000,000, if the race track has been in operation for more than 10 years
  • 6% tax rate,  tax base is the horse racing handle  – if it  exceeds $150,000,000 but it is less than $300,000,000, if the race track has been in operation for more than 10 years
  • 4% tax rate,  tax base is the horse racing handle  – if it  exceeds $300,000,000, if the race track has been in operation for more than 10 years

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Alabama : taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $),

+24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Legal gambling age Alabama: 19+ (sports betting, non-profit gambling), 21+ (poker, Poarch Band of Creek Indian casinos, electronic bingo parlours)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Alabama constitution,   Code of Alabama – Title 11, Chapter 65: Horse Racing & Greyhound Racing in Class 1 MunicipalitiesAlabama Criminal Code – Offenses Against Public Health and Morals,

Alaska

Alaska gambling legislation

Only gambling for fundraising purposes by non-profit organizations, municipalities is allowed. Most forms of non-profit betting that are allowed for fundraising purposes are traditionally Alaskan forms of gambling, such as: Canned Salmon Classic, Deep Freeze Classic, Fish Derby, Goose Classic, Ice Classic, King Salmon Classic, Mercury Classic, Mushing Sweepstakes, Race Classic, Rain Classic, Snow Machine Classic, Dog mushing (dog sled racing betting). There are also Native American gambling establishments (no casinos, only bingo, pull tab, etc.. most of them really small). Fantasy sports betting is not regulated but considered to be legal (at least de facto legal, fantasy sports betting companies accept players from Alaska).

 

Casino gambling Alaska: illegal, tribal casinos are also illegal

Online casino gambling Alaska: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Alaska: legal, but non-profits only, except tribes

Online bingo Alaska: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Alaska: legal, very restricted, only “social poker games” are allowed (small stakes between friends)

Online poker Alaska: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Alaska: legal, but only traditional Alaskan sports and activities, non-profit only

Online sports betting Alaska: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bookmakers might be blocked, fantasy sports websites also accept Alaskan players even though it’s technically illegal

Lottery Alaska: illegal

Online lottery Alaska: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Alaska: not specifically regulated

 

 

Regulatory body Alaska: Alaska Department of Revenue – Tax Division

 

Available gambling licences in Alaska (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • gambling license to non-profit organizations or municipalities (only non-profit gambling, traditional Alaskan sports mostly, with a few exceptions above)

 

No state lottery. Fantasy football, fantasy sports betting is not regulated but de facto legal. Cruise ships, riverboats can leave their casinos open if they pay a 33% tax on gambling revenue.

 

Gambling tax: Federal excise tax – 33%, depending on activity (federal excise tax applies to almost everything except tribal gambling, cruise ship, riverboat gambling)

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Alaska:  personal income tax would apply but there is no such thing in Alaska

+24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Legal gambling age: 19 for non-profit gambling; 21 for pull-tabs, tribal gambling

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: House Bill No. 168 (FIN), Alaska Criminal Law – Chapter 66. Offenses Against Public Health and Decency, Charitable Gaming Statutes and Administrative Code

Arizona

Arizona gambling

Only non-profit gambling is allowed in Arizona. There are 3 types of legal games of chance in Arizona (called classes in the legislation):

Class I – Social gaming: Social gambling is legal, which means that unlike in Alabama, poker among friends is not actually illegal (not just poker, any other form of gambling not specifically made illegal like blood sports). The police won’t break down your door and won’t take you away, unlike in Alabama (actually happened a few times to unfortunate people, see the Alabama section for more info and sources). Social gaming must be among people of the same social circle, small scale, minimal stakes + traditional forms of Indian gaming, tribal ceremonies or celebrations (in case of tribes even blood sports could be okay if it’s for a ceremony).

Class II – Bingo: bingo or electronic bingo (electronic bingo machines are very similar to slot machines, but you can only play bingo on it, it was originally invented to exploit a loophole in the gambling legislation in certain states)

Class III – Casino gaming: gaming machines, blackjack, keno, jackpot poker, and house-banked poker. Tribal casinos are legal. No online casinos.

+ Non-profit gambling raffle, bingo, pull tabs, horse racing, must be a non-profit for 5+ years.

Fantasy sports betting is legal as long as the league operators do not take a cut. Arizona’s gambling industry is dominated by Native American tribes. Tribes can conduct all the previously mentioned forms of gambling, they also have to spend the revenue on charitable projects, but they can spend the money on tribal governmental expenditures as well.

UPDATE 2021: Some websites and online publications erroneously state that Arizona has no legal form of sports betting currently. That’s not actually true, horse racing and dog racing betting is allowed according to the bill SB 1794.

 

Casino gambling Arizona:  illegal, tribal casino only

Online casino gambling Arizona: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Arizona: legal, non-profit only (except Indian)

Online bingo Arizona: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Arizona: legal, small stakes social gambling only, except in tribal casinos

Online poker Arizona: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Arizona: legal, horse and dog racing betting only

Online sports betting Arizona: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Lottery Arizona: legal

Online lottery Arizona: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Arizona: not specifically regulated

 

Source: *Chicago Tribune – Poker players, police seeing who will blink first

 

Regulatory body Arizona: Arizona Department of Gaming – co-regulated by the Tribal Gaming Authority in case of tribal casinos

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • charity gambling: raffle, bingo, pull tabs, horse racing, dog racing betting

 

The state owned and operated Arizona State Lottery is the lottery company of Arizona.

 

Gambling tax: 1% – 6% depending on activity (charity gambling is not taxed)

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Arizona: taxable, personal income tax applies, except, up to $5,000 in lottery winnings is excluded from the tax base – only applies to lottery winnings, 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Legal gambling age: 18+ (poker, bingo), 21+ (everything else)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Arizona Revised Statutes 13-3301Arizona Revised Statutes Title 5 , Social Gambling: Tips to Remember (not an actual bill, but a very informative collection of relevant laws, and the applicable sections)

 

Arkansas

Arkansas gambling

Gambling in general is legal in Arkansas. Big changes happened to the Arkansas gambling legislation between 2018-2020*, and it is no longer as restrictive as it used to be. Casinos, sportsbooks (all unheard of before 2018) are all now legal in Arkansas (number of casinos limited to 4, not including Indian casinos, number of sportsbooks is also capped at 4). Apart from these, horse racing, dog racing betting and lottery (the only forms of gambling prior to 2018) are also legal. In all fairness, there were two casino-like gambling establishments prior to 2018, so called “racinos”.

/Racinos definition: racetracks that add slots, gaming machines and/or table games to attract more players, because horse racing and greyhound racing are not really popular attractions anymore, and they have been in decline for a long time (greyhound racing is being phased out actually**, only a few states have greyhound tracks anymore)./

Racinos are actually a quite common way to stretch the rules, and allow for a more developed gambling sector without expressly legalizing casinos, racinos are widespread in states which haven’t yet legalized casinos (it’s only a matter of time till they do btw., there is a clear trend towards legalization).

Just like in the other sates, online gambling in Arkansas is mostly illegal:

“It is unlawful for any person to bet any money or other valuable thing or any representative of any thing that is esteemed of value on any game prohibited by [Section] 5-66-104” (Section 5-66-106).”  – 2012 Arkansas Code, Title 5 – Criminal Offenses, Subtitle 6 – Offenses Against Public Health, Safety, Or Welfare. Chapter 66 – Gambling

Online casinos are technically illegal, but people who play online are not fined or prosecuted in any way.

Online sports betting (horse racing betting only) and selling lottery tickets online is legal. Fantasy sports betting is not regulated, but US fantasy football sites accept players from Arkansas (according to Act 1075*** fantasy sports betting is not gambling, therefore gambling legislation is not applicable to paid entry fantasy sports).

Native American tribes have considerable autonomy when it comes to gambling, just like in every other state, and the Quapaw Nation of Oklahoma operates 2 casinos in the state, the Saracen Casino Resort and the Saracen annex (apart from the casinos there are also many other smaller gambling establishments operated by them).

The state owned and operated Arkansas Scholarship Lottery is the lottery company of Arkansas (it’s a monopoly).

 

Source:

*Arkansas Issue 4, Casinos Authorized in Crittenden, Garland, Pope, and Jefferson Counties Initiative (2018)

**Arkansas Democrat Gazette – Phaseout OK’d for Arkansas dog races

 

Casino gambling Arkansas:  legal, operators require a licence

Online casino gambling Arkansas: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked (UPDATE 2021: interestingly, there is a loophole, you are allowed to play on the casino’s online platform, while being psychically present within the casino, and because of this some websites erroneously claim that online casinos are legal in Arkansas, they are not, that’s wrong information)

Bingo Arkansas: legal, but non-profits only

Online bingo Arkansas: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Arkansas: legal within casino only, interestingly poker games at home, among friends are illegal too

Online poker Arkansas: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Arkansas: legal, operators require a licence

Online sports betting Arkansas: legal, operators require a licence, horse racing and dog racing betting only

Lottery Arkansas: legal, keno is illegal

Online lottery Arkansas: legal, Arkansas Scholarship Lottery only

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Arkansas: not specifically regulated

 

Source: *Chicago Tribune – Poker players, police seeing who will blink first

 

Regulatory body: Arkansas Gaming Commission

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • casino license (maximum 4 casinos, all of the casino licenses are taken, no online casino gambling)
  • sports betting license (4 sportsbooks, horse racing betting, dog racing betting, online horse racing and dog racing betting)
  • charitable raffle, bingo licence (only non-profits are eligible, charity must be a nonprofit tax-exempt religious, educational, veterans, fraternal, service, civic, medical, volunteer rescue service, volunteer firefighters organization or volunteer police organization)

 

Gambling tax Arkansas:

The measure also established tax rates for all four casinos: they are taxed at a rate of 13% on the first $150,000,000 of net gaming receipts and 20% on net gaming receipts exceeding $150,000,001. Taxes collected by the state are distributed as follows:

  • 55% to the state general revenue fund
  • 5% to the city in which the casino is located, unless the casino is not located in a city. In that case 19.5% goes to the county in which the casino is located
  • 5% to the Arkansas Racing Commission for distribution to horse and greyhound racing purses
  • 8% to the county in which the casino is located

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Arkansas: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Legal gambling age in Arkansas: 18+ (lottery, bingo), 21+ (casinos, sports betting)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation:Arkansas Scholarship Lottery Act , Arkansas Constitution article 19, section 14, Arkansas Greyhound Racing Law, Arkansas Horse Racing Law, Arkansas Code § 23-113-103, Act 1151 – Local Option Horse Racing and Greyhound Racing Electronic Games of Skill Act of 2005 (pdf, needs to be downloaded)

California

California gambling

Gambling is very restricted in California. However, the state has many tribal casino (62) which defeats the purpose of the strict gambling legislation. And apart from Native American gambling, there is the uniquely Californian card club industry, which is now a $5 billion industry with 88 clubs.

There are only Indian casinos in CA.

The following forms of gambling are expressly stated to be illegal in California:

  • Faro,
  • Monte,
  • Roulette,
  • Lansquenet,
  • Rouge et noire,
  • Rondo,
  • Tan,
  • Fan-tan,
  • Seven-and-a-half,
  • Twenty-one,
  • Hokey-pokey,
  • dice games,
  • Banking or percentage games* played with cards or dice.

 

*Banking (or banked) games definition: when the players play against each other, and not against the house (when it’s against the house, then it’s a so called controlled game according to the Californian legislation), so a poker tournament is a banking game, but texas hold’em is a controlled game, controlled games are only allowed in Indian casinos, while banked games are allowed in card clubs.

 

Only the following forms of gambling are legal in California:

  • Card clubs
  • Sports betting (parimutuel horse wagering only)
  • Charitable gambling – only bingo, no raffles or small scale lottery, unlike in the other states
  • Lottery – the state owned and operated California lottery only
  • In-home, not-for-profit poker games are also permitted, a.k.a. social gambling

 

+Indian casinos are legal, which can have any of the above + slots and so called “controlled” card games

Social gambling is legal, but only poker games, among friends, small stakes, in someone’s legal residence.

 

Source:

*Sand Diego Union Tribune – Fed up tribes sue card rooms, seek to halt offering some games they contend are illegal

 

 

Casino gambling California: illegal, Indian casinos only

Online casino gambling California: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo California: legal, but non-profit organizations only

Online bingo California: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker California: legal, in card clubs and Indian casinos only

Online poker California: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting California: legal, operators require a licence

Online sports betting California: legal, only horse racing betting

Lottery California: legal

Online lottery California: legal

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling California: not specifically regulated

 

Regulatory body:  California Gambling Control Commission, California Nations Indian Gaming Association (responsible for First Nations gambling)

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • card club license (maximum 6 casinos, and 10 riverboats with gambling facilities, max 16)
  • charity remote caller bingo (only non-profits are eligible, charity must be in operation for 5+ years)
  • traditional bingo (regulated locally, by the municipalities, license might not be need, depending on the municipality)

 

Gambling tax California:

  • cardrooms – 10% operator fee on gross gambling receipts,
  • pari-mutuel horse racing betting wagering – 20.84% on gross gambling receipts

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in California: taxable, personal income tax applies, 1% to 13.3% of your winnings depending on the exact activity, lottery winnings from the California Lottery or Mega millions are tax exempt, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Minimum age to gamble in California: 18+ (lottery, bingo), 21+ (casino, horse racing, everything else)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Gambling Control Act (GCA)California Assembly Bill 649 , Penal code – Part 1 Crimes and Punishments – title 9 Crimes Against the Person Involving Sexual Assault, and Crimes Against Public Decency and Good Morals,

Colorado

Colorado gambling

Colorado is very strict when it comes to games of chance, and only allows the following few forms of gambling:

  • lottery – Colorado Lottery only, legal since 1982
  • sports betting – horse racing betting only, UPDATE 2020: Since 2020 Colorado joined the ranks of US states with a legal sports betting industry (and online sports betting industry) + 1 Indian sportsbook
  • non-profit raffles, bingo
  • casinos, which are restricted to three historic mining towns in the state: Central City, Black Hawk and Cripple Creek  + Indian casinos

 

Summary: Between 1950 – 1982 only horse racing betting and greyhound racing betting was legal in Colorado (before 1950, gambling was not regulated, it was illegal, but thriving and prevalent in the mining towns, mostly). In 1982 the state lottery was added to this mix. And in 1991 casinos were legalized as well, in three historic towns. In 2009, the betting limit was increased to $100 from a measly $5, which made the casinos for the first time competitive, which meant they could compete with Las Vegas and the other gambling states, and this led to a casino boom. And finally, in 2020, Colorado legalized betting on sporting events apart from horse races and dog races, and also legalized online sports betting (the first officially legal form of online gambling in Colorado).

The state gambling legislation is not applicable to the Indian tribes in the state, they have the right to make their own based on the sate gambling legislation. There are Indian casinos and sportsbooks In Colorado.

Social gambling (small stakes gambling among friends) has been made legal officially In Colorado. Sadly, there are still quite a few states where social gambling can actually get you in trouble (e.g.: Illinois).

Dog racing has been outlawed since 2014. Horse racing betting is still legal at the state’s one and only horse racing track Arapahoe Park, but that is on its way out too (not just in Colorado, harness racing and dog racing are in a decline, all over the US).

The state owned and operated Colorado Lottery is the lottery company of Colorado.

 

Casino gambling Colorado: legal since 1991, restricted to Central City, Black Hawk and Cripple Creek + Indian casinos

Online casino gambling Colorado: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Colorado: legal, but non-profits only

Online bingo Colorado: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Colorado: legal, license required, there are 10 poker rooms In Colorado, but the law is very ambiguous when it comes to poker, and leaves a lot up to interpretation

Online poker Colorado: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Colorado: legal, license required

Online sports betting Colorado: legal since 2020

Lottery Colorado: legal

Online lottery Colorado: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Colorado: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

 

Regulatory body: Colorado – Department of Revenue  – Division of Gaming

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • charity bingo (only non-profits are eligible)
  • casino licence
  • sportsbook licence

 

Gambling tax Colorado:

  • Sportsbooks are taxed at 10% (of gross profits, falt tax rate, regardless of tax base).
  • greyhound racing betting 4.5% of gross profits (outlawed since 2014)
  • horse racing betting  0.75% of gross profits
  • casinos are taxed the following way (progressive tax system, tax base is the gross profit):
    • Under $2 million: 0.25%
    • $2 million to $5 million: 2%
    • $5 million to $8 million: 9%
    • $8 million to $10 million: 11%
    • $10 million to $13 million: 16%
    • $13 million+: 20%

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Colorado: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Gambling age requirement in Colorado: 18 (lottery, bingo, horse racing betting), 21+ (casino, poker, sports betting)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Colorado Limited Gaming Act, Colorado Revised Statutes, Sports Betting Regulations Colorado

Connecticut

Connecticut gambling

Gambling is only regulated and officially legal in Connecticut since 1976, when betting on horse racing and dog racing was made legal and started to be regulated (despite this, there is no, and never was, any harness racing track in Connecticut, just greyhound racing tracks, interestingly jai alai betting is also legal).

In 1992 Indian casinos were made legal, there are two of them in operation: Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun (and 2 are under construction).

Non-profit companies can conduct the following gambling activities for fundraising purposes as long as the proceeds are used to fund charitable activities: bingo, raffles, carnival games and pull-tabs (scratch cards).

Apart from this there is the state lottery company, the Connecticut Lottery. That’s all the legal gambling options Connecticut residents have.

Online gambling, just like in most other sates is technically illegal. However, just like in the rest of America, players are not prosecuted or fined in any way, and a few online gambling platforms (see below) accept players from Connecticut (some of them might be blocked, if they are blocked, please leave a comment at the bottom, thank you).

Social gambling, as the law puts it: “incidental to a bona fide social relationship” is allowed (e.g.: poker game among friends in someone’s house) is legal, not considered gambling, therefore do not need a licence and is tax exempt.

 

Casino gambling Connecticut: illegal, Indian casinos only

Online casino gambling Connecticut: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Connecticut: legal, but non-profits only

Online bingo Connecticut: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Connecticut: legal, social gambling among friends and in Indian casinos

Online poker Connecticut: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Connecticut: legal, harness racing, dog racing and jai alai betting only

Online sports betting Connecticut: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Lottery Connecticut: legal

Online lottery Connecticut: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Connecticut: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

 

 

Regulatory body: Department of Consumer Protection – Gaming Division

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • charity raffle, bingo, sealed ticket sales licence (only non-profits are eligible)
  • lottery sales agent

 

Native American gambling is licensed separately by the Tribal Gaming councils. UPDATE: A new, third Native American casino is under construction by MMCT Venture LLC, the Tribal Winds Casino.

 

Gambling tax Connecticut:

horse racing betting:

Total Wagered

Tax

    0 to $100,001

3.25% on the entire pool

$100,001 to $200,001

3.75% on the entire pool

$200,001 to $300,001

4.25% on the entire pool

$300,001 to $400,001

4.75% on the entire pool

$400,001 to $500,001

5.25% on the entire pool

$500,001 to $600,001

5.75% on the entire pool

$600,001 to $700,001

6.25% on the entire pool

$700,001 to $800,001

6.75% on the entire pool

$800,001 to $900,001

7.25% on the entire pool

  $900,001 to $1,000,001

7.75% on the entire pool

$1,000,001 and over

8.75% on the entire pool

 

dog racing:

  • 2% of the total money wagered, up to 50$ million
  • 3% of the total money wagered,  if it’s more than 50$ million, but less than $80 million
  • 4% if it’s above 80 million

 

Non-profit gambling is not taxed.

Native American casinos in CT are taxed at 25% (of the gross gambling revenue from slots).

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Connecticut: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Legal gambling age in Connecticut: 18+ , except the casinos, which are 21+

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Public Act 17-89, Public Act 17-161,  Public Act 17-209 

 

Delaware

Delaware legal status of games of chance

 

In Delaware the following forms of gambling are legal:

  • casino gambling (they have 3 casinos, all 3 are so called “racinos” – racetrack + casino, all are owned by the Delaware Lottery, no private casinos)
  • lottery, Delaware Lottery
  • sports betting
  • charity gambling (bingo, instant or sealed games, raffles, texas hold’em poker)

 

When it comes to online gambling, Delaware is actually one of the few states in the USA where online casinos are legal (since 2012, the first state to legalize online casinos). But online sports betting is still technically illegal. Online poker is also legal.

Delaware has no First Nations casinos.

 

UPDATE: Fantasy sports betting was made legal, the first form of online “sports betting” in Delaware. Companies need a license, according to the 2017 Delaware Interactive Fantasy Contest Act.

 

Casino gambling Delaware: legal, state owned casinos, owned by the Delaware Lottery

Online casino gambling Delaware: legal since 2012, operators require a licence

Bingo Delaware: legal, but non-profits only

Online bingo Delaware: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Delaware: legal, non-profit or in the casinos

Online poker Delaware: legal, requires licence

Sports betting Delaware: legal, operators require a licence

Online sports betting Delaware: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked, fantasy sports betting is legal, license required

Lottery Delaware: legal

Online lottery Delaware: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Delaware: not specifically regulated, possibly legal with an online gambling licence

 

 

Regulatory body: Delaware Lottery, The Board of Charitable Gambling (non-profit gambling)

 

 

Available gambling licences(available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • online casino licence
  • online poker licence
  • charitable gambling licence (bingo, raffles, poker and instant or sealed games)
  • fantasy sports betting license

 

 

Gambling tax Delaware: 42.5% of the revenue from slots, the first $3 million in annual revenue from online betting is taxed at a 100% rate, 15.5% of the revenue from table games, 49% of the revenue from sports betting

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Delaware: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Legal gambling age in Delaware: 18+ (lottery), 21+ (everything else)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Video Lottery and Table Games  Regulations, Chapter 219

Florida

Florida gambling

In Florida, the following forms of gambling are legal:

  • pari-mutuel wagering on harness racing, greyhound racing, jai alai
  • cardroom poker
  • slot machine gaming in Broward and Miami-Dade counties
  • non-profit gambling (Florida law expressly permits certain specified 501(c) organizations to conduct bingo, raffles for charitable, civic, community, benevolent, religious, funding of scholastic works or other similar endeavors)

 

Even though there are many casinos in Florida, craps and roulette are not allowed (the casinos go around this law by installing so called “virtual” or “electronic” table games without dealers and croupiers, it’s a loophole, everyone knows it, but there is too much money in the gambling industry for the state to do anything about it, it’s a big employer, and a cash cow, not to mention, the law was meant to make sure there will be no casinos in Florida, it obviously failed at it).

There are also Indian casinos (6 are owned and operated by the Seminole Tribe of Florida, and one is owned and operated by the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida) and tribal cardrooms in Florida, but they also can’t have roulette or craps. The real exceptions are not the Native American tribes but the the ‘casino boats’ (usually cruise ships with casinos, sometimes smaller boats too) that can have slots, table games, craps, roulette regardless of their location, as long as they close while in port, and they only open their casino section while in international waters.

Social gambling, small-scale gambling among friends (e.g.: a game of poker with your friends, in your house) is legal as long as:

  • it is poker, pinochle, bridge, rummy, canasta, hearts, dominoes, or mah-jongg, or similar
  • takes place in the legal residence of the main organizer
  • the winnings of any player in a single round, hand or game do not exceed $10 in value;
  • no person receives any payment for permitting the game to take place;
  • no admission or other fee is charged for participation in the game;
  • no advertising of the game takes place; and
  • all participants are over 18 years of age.

 

However, this only applies to your place of residence, it’s punishable with up to 5 years in prion according to Florida statutes 849.01, even if it’s e.g.: takes place in your shop, after hours, if you are a small business owner, even if you live in the back of your shop, because you can’t afford to rent a flat due to the insane housing market in Florida. *

 

Sources:

*Local10 – 2 men arrested in Weston gambling raid

 

 

Casino gambling Florida: legal, operators require a license + there are Indian casinos

Online casino gambling Florida: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Florida: legal, but non-profits only

Online bingo Florida: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Florida: legal, in casinos or small stakes social gambling

Online poker Florida: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Florida: legal, only horse racing, harness racing, dog racing betting

Online sports betting Florida: technically illegal, but bettors are not prosecuted or fined, fantasy sports betting is an exception, it is legal

Lottery Florida: legal

Online lottery Florida: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Florida: not specifically regulated

 

 

Regulatory body: The Seminole Tribe of Florida (for class III gaming), Department of Business and Professional Regulation – The Office of Slot Operations within the Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • cardroom licence
  • slot licence
  • casino boats
  • charity raffle, bingo, poker licence (only non-profits, 501(c) organizations)

 

 

Gambling tax Florida: There is a 35 percent slot machine tax from revenues from slot machines. Cardrooms pay 10% of the monthly gross receipts in taxes. Non-profit gambling is not taxed,  and interestingly casino boats are also not taxed on a sate level (with an extra gambling tax).

Indian casinos are taxed according to revenue, the following way:

  • 0-$2bn 12 percent
  • $2bn-$3bn 15 percent
  • $3bn-$3.5bn 17.5 percent
  • $3.5bn-$4bn 20 percent
  • $4bn-$4.5bn 22.5 percent
  • $4.5bn or greater 25 percent

 

horse racing betting: is 0.5 % of the handle per performance for thoroughbred races, 0.3 % for everything else

greyhound racing betting: is 0.3% of the handle per performance, but the law is formulated in such a way that in reality none of the greyhound racing tracks can ever realistically achieve enough revenue to pay taxes, therefore they are not taxed with a separate gambling tax (it’s owned by the state, no point, if they want to, they can get the money out of this company by other means)

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Florida: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Legal gambling age Florida: 18+ (lottery, bingo, horse racing betting), 21+ (casinos, poker, sports betting)

8 at all Indian casinos for bingo or poker and 21 for electronic gaming machines, 18 years for the lottery and bingo, and 21 years for those betting in casinos or the racing tracks

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Pari-Mutuel Wagering Chapter 550, Slot Machine Gaming Chapter 551, Gambling Chapter 849, Cardrooms Section 849.086

Georgia

Georgia gambling

Legal gambling in Georgia started in 1993 with the establishment of the Georgia lottery (state owned and controlled). Before that, only illegal, and at best, tolerated gambling establishments were present in the state. The lottery remains the only form of commercial, for profit gambling company (although, it’s owned by the state, and even though it’s not a registered charity, a huge portion of the money the state makes on the lottery is used to fund the HOPE Scholarship)

Gambling conducted by not for profit, 501 (c) registered charities to fund their activities is legal since 1976, the permitted activies are: bingo and raffles.

There are no Indian casinos in Georgia.

The following forms of gambling are explicitly made illegal by the Georgian gambling legislation:

  • horse racing
  • dog racing
  • casinos
  • maintaining gambling places or gambling equipment
  • election wagering
  • commercial gambling
  • dog fighting
  • chain letters
  • pyramid schemes

 

Even though Georgia is not a gambling-friendly state, it’s one of the few states, where selling lottery tickets online is actually legal (for the Georgia lottery only of course). The legal status of fantasy sports betting is not yet settled, and some fantasy football websites accept punters from Georgia and some do not., it’s not known yet what the offical verdict will be.

 

Casino gambling Georgia: illegal

Online casino gambling Georgia: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Georgia: legal, but non-profits only

Online bingo Georgia: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Georgia: illegal

Online poker Georgia: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Georgia: illegal

Online sports betting Georgia: technically illegal, but bettors are not prosecuted or fined, fantasy sports betting is an exception, it is legal

Lottery Georgia: legal

Online lottery Georgia: legal

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Georgia: not specifically regulated

 

 

Regulatory body:  Georgia Bureau of Investigation – Commercial Gambling Unit

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • charity raffle, bingo (only non-profits)

 

 

Gambling tax Georgia: There is no extra gambling tax in Georgia. However, 25% of the lottery’s profits are transferred to the state, that’s the closest thing to a gambling tax in Georgia (which is about $1 billion per year).

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Georgia: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Minimum age to gamble in Georgia: 18+

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: O.C.G.A. § 16-12-21, O.C.G.A. § 16-12-22, O.C.G.A. § 16-12-24

Hawaii

Hawaii gambling

The island state of Hawaii, and Utah, are the most anti-gambling states in the US of A. Only social poker (small stakes poker games among friends in someone’s house) is allowed in Hawaii. Nothing else. Not even gambling organized by charities, non-profit organizations to fund their programs (even in gambling unfriendly states this is usually legal). They also don’t have a lottery (which is a terrible idea, it’s great extra revenue for a state, and problem gambling can easily be mitigated because lotteries in the US are all strictly controlled state owned companies, not to mention, a big chunk of the lottery revenue is spent on socially beneficial and charitable programs in every state where it is legal, not to mention, it gives many people from the lower social classes hope that there is a way out of their bad, stressful, unfulfilling, 9-to-5 life, it’s false hope, but it keeps them going, and makes them happier, let’s not underestimate that).

Fantasy sports betting is also illegal in Hawaii, even though in many states it is clearly not considered gambling.

 

Casino gambling Hawaii: illegal

Online casino gambling Hawaii: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Hawaii: illegal

Online bingo Hawaii: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Hawaii: illegal except social gambling among friends (small stakes, in someone’s legal residence, 18+, no entry fee, not advertised in any way)

Online poker Hawaii: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Hawaii: illegal

Online sports betting Hawaii: technically illegal, but bettors are not prosecuted or fined, fantasy sports betting is an exception, it is legal

Lottery Hawaii: illegal (but soon to be legal: Bill to establish a state lottery passes first hurdle in a long, uphill battle)

Online lottery Hawaii: technically illegal, but bettors are not prosecuted or fined

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Hawaii: not specifically regulated

 

 

Regulatory body:  No regulatory body.

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

None.

 

Gambling tax Hawaii: There is no gambling tax in Hawaii.

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Hawaii: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Minimum age to gamble in Hawaii: 18+

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Hawaii Revised Statutes

Idaho

Idaho gambling

The first form of gambling that was made legal was pari-mutuel horse race betting, it was legalized in 1963 (this also made dog racing betting legal, but since then, in 1996, greyhound racing was made illegal). This was followed by the creation of the state lottery in 1989. The first Native American gaming venue opened in 1992 (there are 7 tribal casino in Idaho nowadays).

Blackjack, craps, roulette, poker, baccarat and electronic versions of these games are illegal, even when operated by Native American casinos in Idaho..

Just like in most states, non-profit organizations, registered charities can organize gambling events (only bingo and raffles) to fund their activities, since 1993.

Fantasy sports betting is illegal in Idaho. Social gambling (e.g.: poker game among friends in someone’s house) is also illegal, but this is not really enforced, unlike in Illinois. However, if it gets too big, or looks even  the slightest bit like for profit, real gambling, you will get into trouble.*

Idaho is clearly not a gambling friendly state, but the 7 Indian casinos ruin the state’s effort to limit and stifle the gambling industry.

*Source: Idahonews – Cops bust illegal poker club, four arrested, BPD says

 

Casino gambling Idaho:  illegal, but the state’s gambling legislation does not apply to the Indian tribes, there are Indian casinos

Online casino gambling Idaho: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Idaho: legal, charity bingo and raffles only

Online bingo Idaho: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Idaho: illegal

Online poker Idaho: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Idaho: legal, parimutuel horse racing betting only

Online sports betting Idaho: technically illegal, but bettors are not prosecuted or fined, fantasy sports betting is also illegal

Lottery Idaho: legal

Online lottery Idaho: technically illegal, but bettors are not prosecuted or fined, fantasy sports betting is an exception, it is legal

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Idaho: not specifically regulated

 

Regulatory body: Idaho State Police – Racing Commission, Idaho Lottery (non-profit licenses)

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • charity raffle, bingo (only non-profits)
  • sports betting licence (off-track horse racing betting and betting on pool and billiards)

 

 

Gambling tax Idaho: 21% of the lottery’s profits are transferred to the state,

The horse racing betting taxation is complicated, but it’s around 1%, you can find the details of it here.

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Idaho: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+ 24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Minimum age to gamble in Idaho: 18+, except Clearwater Casino, which is 21+

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Title 67 State Government and State Affairs – Chapter 77 Bingo and Raffles (non-profit gambling), Idaho Statues – Title 18 Crimes and Punishment – Chapter 38 Gaming

Illinois

Illinois gambling

The following forms of gambling are legal in Illinois:

  • casinos
  • bingo (non-profit only)
  • some forms of poker
  • raffles (non-profit only)
  • riverboat casinos
  • VLTs

 

Interestingly, the legal status of commercial, for-profit bingo and poker (tournaments, cash games, not poker against a dealer e.g.: texas hold’em, but poker against other poker players) are very complicated, perhaps the most complicated among all the 50 states. Only non-profit companies can organize bingo and poker games (that is the law on a state level, counties can make their own poker laws, that is why you can still see poker and bingo in some casinos). Also, due to the peculiarities of the Illinois Raffle and Poker Runs Act and the Criminal Code, freeroll poker tournaments seem to be an exception according to some interpretations (and in Illinois casinos you will most likely only see freeroll tournaments and poker against the dealer). Interestingly, even small-states poker games among friends are illegal (a.k.a social gambling). Although rare, small poker parties have been busted by the police. Be careful, best to keep it among your friends only and don’t advertise it on Facebook etc…

Online gambling is very restricted, only online sports betting and online lottery are legal (players can play online in online casinos which accept players from Illinois, see below, it’s technically illegal, but payers are not prosecuted or fined in any way).

The state owned and operated Illinois State Lottery is the lottery company of Illinois.

 

Casino gambling Illinois:  legal, operators require a licence

Online casino gambling Illinois: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Illinois: legal, but non-profits only

Online bingo Illinois: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Illinois: legal, restricted, complicated

Online poker Illinois: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Illinois: legal, operators require a licence

Online sports betting Illinois: legal, operators require a licence

Lottery Illinois: legal

Online lottery Illinois: legal

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Illinois: not specifically regulated

 

 

Regulatory body: Illinois Gaming Board (responsible for casino gambling in Illinois), Illinois Racing Board (regulating many forms of sports betting in Illinois), Illinois Lottery Control Board  (regulatory body for lottery in Illinois), Illinois Department of Revenue (tasked with overseeing bingo, raffles)

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • casino and riverboat gambling licenses (maximum 6 casinos, and 10 riverboats with gambling facilities, max 16)
  • video gambling terminal license (up to 10 machines maximum, basically slot hall licence equivalent, max 7000 machines total)
  • sports betting licence (max 7 land-based, 3 online, max 5000 sports betting terminals/kiosks)
  • charity raffle, bingo, poker licence (only non-profits are eligible, charity must be in operation for 5+ years)

 

Gambling taxation in in Illinois: 

  • sports betting is taxed at a 15% rate (of gross adjusted revenue, the amount left over after winnings have been paid)
  • Illinois has the highest casino tax in the whole country with a 38.7% tax rate on gross gaming revenue, and a 33.3% privilege tax
  • non-profit, charity gambling is not taxed

 

For players, how the money you won will be taxed in Illinois: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+ 24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Minimum age requirement for gambling in Illinois: 18+ (lottery, bingo, horse racing betting), 21+ (casino, poker, sports betting)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Illinois Raffle and Poker Runs Act, Bingo and License Tax Act, Illinois Video Gaming Act, Illinois Horse Racing Act of 1975, Illinois Lottery Law, Sports Wagering Act

 

Indiana

Indiana gambling

The following forms of gambling are legal in Indiana:

  • bingo (501(c) non-profit and amusement concession operators)
  • non-profit gambling (raffles, bingo – only for 501(c) non-profit)
  • casino games (there are 21 casinos + 4 Indian casinos + 1 riverboat casino)
  • card games
  • so called “licensed social gaming” (poker, pinochle, pitch, gin rummy, bridge, euchre, hearts, cribbage, dominoes, checkers, chess, backgammon, pool, darts as long as participants can not lose or win more than $50 per game)
  • horse racing betting
  • lottery
  • UPDATE: and sports betting and online sports betting since 2019

 

According to section 4-33-24-1 of the Indiana Code: “IC 4-33-24-1 – Paid fantasy sports game is not gambling”, therefore the gambling legislation does not apply to fantasy football sites, which means they are legal, do not require a license and don’t have to pay a gambling tax.

Greyhound racing is illegal in Indiana since 2010.

Social gambling (e.g.: a poker night with friends in your house) is sadly illegal, and even though it’s rare, sometimes people do get into trouble for it Here is an example of it: Times of Northwest Indiana –Police broke up a poker game in East Calumet.

Hosting a game at home could land you a class C felony charge.

 

 

Casino gambling Indiana: legal, requires licence + Indian casinos

Online casino gambling Indiana: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Indiana: legal, non-profits only

Online bingo Indiana: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo platforms might be blocked

Poker Indiana: legal in the casinos

Online poker Indiana: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker platforms might be blocked

Sports betting Indiana: legal, requires licence

Online sports betting Indiana: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Lottery Indiana: legal, Hoosier Lottery

Online lottery Indiana: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online lottery sites might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Indiana: not specifically regulated

 

Regulatory body: Alcohol and Tobacco Commission, Indiana Gaming Commission

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • pull tabs (a.k.a scratch cards) license
  • sports betting license
  • casino license
  • riverboat casino license

 

Gambling tax Indiana: 

Riverboat casinos and casinos pay the following tax, par annum (progressive system depends on gross gambling revenue)

• 15% on the first $25m of gross gaming receipts (if a casino received less than $75m in adjusted gross revenues in the previous year, then the tax rate for this bracket is 5%).
• 20% on gross receipts over $25m
• 25% on gross receipts over $50m
• 30% on gross receipts over $75m
• 35% on gross receipts over $150m
• 40% on gross receipts over $600m

Racinos (racetrack+casino) pay:

• 25 percent of the first $100m of adjusted gross receipts received during the fiscal year.
• 30 percent of the adjusted gross receipts in excess of $100m but not exceeding $200m received during
the fiscal year.
• 35 percent of the adjusted gross receipts in excess of $200m received during the fiscal year

 

Sports betting is taxed at at a flat 9.5% rate, this includes online sports betting as well.

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Indiana: taxable, personal income tax applies (3.23%), and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+ 24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask. Additionally the state withholds 3.4% on slot machine winnings greater than $1,200 and keno prizes over $1,500, the gambling establishments automatically deduct this from your winnings.

 

Minimum legal gambling age in Indiana: 21 (casinos, riverboat casinos, racinos , sports betting), 18+ (everything else)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Indiana Code 35-45-5, Title 4, Article 33 of the Indiana Code

Iowa

Iowa gambling

The following forms of gambling are legal in Iowa:

  • bingo (501(c) non-profit and amusement concession operators)
  • non-profit gambling (raffles, bingo – only for 501(c) non-profit)
  • casino games (there are 21 casinos + 4 Indian casinos + 1 riverboat casino)
  • card games
  • so called “licensed social gaming”  (poker, pinochle, pitch, gin rummy, bridge, euchre, hearts, cribbage, dominoes, checkers, chess, backgammon, pool, darts as long as participants can not lose or win more than $50 per game)

 

Iowa is one of the few sates where there is unlicensed and also licensed social gambling.

Unlicensed social gambling (playing poker with friends in your house) is legal, but only poker is allowed, and as long as it takes place in someone’s residence, all participants must be of legal age to gamble (21) and people who have ” a bona fide social relationship” according to the Legislative Guide to Gambling in Iowa – VIII. Unlicensed Social Gambling.

Fantasy sports betting is legal since 2019. Sports betting, and online sports betting are legal since 2019.

 

Casino gambling Iowa: legal, requires licence + Indian casinos

Online casino gambling Iowa: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Iowa: legal, non-profits only

Online bingo Iowa: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo platforms might be blocked

Poker Iowa: legal in the casinos

Online poker Iowa: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker platforms might be blocked

Sports betting Iowa: legal, requires licence

Online sports betting Iowa: UPDATE 2019: legal, requires a licence, includes fantasy sports betting

Lottery Iowa: legal

Online lottery Iowa: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online lottery sites might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Iowa: not specifically regulated

 

Regulatory body: The Racing & Gaming Commission, Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals – The Social and Charitable Gambling Unit

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • annual game night license (non-profit only, casinos games)
  • amusement concessions
  • charitable gambling activities (501(c) non-profit only, bingo, raffle)
  • fantasy sports betting
  • sports wagering, online sports betting
  • bingo (commercial)
  • raffle, electronic raffle

 

 

Gambling tax Iowa: 

sports betting (flat tax rate): 6.75% of net revenues

casinos (progressive tax system):

  • revenue under $1 million – 5% tax rate, (tax base is the gross gaming revenue)
  • revenue over $1 million, but under $3 million -10% tax rate, (tax base is the gross gaming revenue)
  • revenue over $3 million – 20% tax rate, (tax base is the gross gaming revenue)

 

Gambling organized by charities is gambling tax exempt.

 

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Iowa: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+ 24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Minimum age to gamble in Iowa: 21+

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Chapter 99B Social and Charitable Gambling, Chapter 103 Bingo, Chapter 101 Amusement Concessions

Kansas

Kansas gambling law

The following forms of games of chance are legal in Kansas:

  • bingo, instant bingo games, raffles (only by 501(c) non-profit religious, charitable, fraternal, educational and veterans organizations)
  • sports betting (horse racing, dog racing parimutuel wagering but currently there are no racetracks)
  • lottery (and keno, Kansas Lottery)
  • casino games (in state owned casinos)
  • sports betting, online sports betting
  • fantasy sports betting

 

+Native American casinos are also legal.

Online gambling, just like in most states is not yet legalized. The only form of online gambling that is currently legal in Kansas is fantasy sports betting. UPDATE 2021: The bill SB84 is being voted on right now in 2021, this, if it passes, will legalize sports betting and online sports betting in Kansas. Both are expected to be legalized within a year.

Social gambling (e.g.:poker game among friends in someone’s house) is sadly illegal, and this law is sometimes actually enforced.*

UPDATE 2021: Fantasy sports betting was made legal in 2015, with the bill HB 2155.

*abc – Kansas man pleads guilty in illegal gambling case

 

Casinos Kansas: legal, requires licence

Online casino sites Kansas: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo halls Kansas: legal, non-profits only

Online bingo platforms Kansas: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo platforms might be blocked

Poker rooms Kansas: legal in the casinos

Online poker networks Kansas: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker platforms might be blocked

Bookmakers Kansas: legal, needs a licence

Online sportsbooks Kansas: legal, just recently made legal by he bill HB 2155

Lottery Kansas: legal, Kansas Lottery only

Selling lottery tickets and lottery products online in Kansas: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online lottery platforms might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Kansas : not specifically regulated

 

Regulatory body:  Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • charitable gaming license (bingo, instant bingo, raffles, 501(c) only
  • casino license (called “lottery gaming facility manager” on the website)

 

Gambling tax Kansas: Kansas’ commercial casinos are required to pay a minimum tax rate of 27% (tax base is the gross gaming revenue, Indian casinos do not pay gambling taxes)

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Kansas: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+ 24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Minimum age to gamble in Kansas: 18+ (lottery), 21+ (everything else)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Kansas Statutes – Chapter 21, Article 64: Crimes Against the Public Morals, Chapter 74, Article 87: State Lottery (state owned casinos as well), Chapter 74, Article 88: Parimutuel Racing, Chapter 74, Article 98: Tribal Gaming Oversight, Charitable Gambling

Kentucky

Kentucky gambling

Kentucky’s legal gambling dates back all the way to 1891 when everything except betting on horse racing and dog racing was made illegal. The Kentucky Lottery was established in 1988. 1992, charitable gambling was made legal. VGMs were introduced in 2010 (explanation of VGMS can be found below).

The following forms of gambling are legal in Kentucky currently:

  • sports betting (harness racing betting + online harness racing betting)
  • bingo (commercial)
  • charitable gambling (bingo, raffles, pull tabs)
  • VGMs – video gaming machines, a.k.a. historical horse racing machines
  • lottery and online lottery

 

Online gambling, like in most US states, is technically illegal (players are not prosecuted or fined, but a few online gambling websites are blocked), the only exceptions are online horse racing betting and the online platform of the Kentucky lottery, where you can purchase tickets online.

Even though Kentucky doesn’t have casinos, the horse racing tracks have so called ‘historical horse racing machine’, a slot machine alternative that uses a legal loophole to circumvent the ban on gambling machines. Therefore, these race tracks act as ‘racinos’ (portmanteau of casino + race track). Below is a video about these VGMs, which explains how they circumvent the law, and why they might disappear in the near future. (Comment: they should, these have nothing to do with horse racing, these are obviously slots, either legalize them, or get rid of them, it’s sad that the state owned race tracks abuse a loophole in the state’s very own gambling legislation, they shouldn’t allow this kind of behavior, this just encourages this ‘loophole seeking’ behaviour in the private sector as well.)

 

 

There are no Indian casinos in Kentucky.

Fantasy sports betting is not actually legal in Kentucky, despite this, many of the biggest fantasy football platforms accept players from Kentucky, illegally. These platforms claim that fantasy sports betting is not gambling, which is true in many states (and in many others it is considered a game of chance). It is not a settled issue.

Social gambling (poker game among friends) in Kentucky is not specifically mentioned in the gambling legislation, but assumed to be illegal, because all forms of unlicensed, not specifically legalized forms of gambling are illegal. Not known how strictly this is enforced.

Interestingly, between 1927 and 1939 greyhound racing was also semi-legal, tolerated. But it was never officially legal. They called the races, “race meetings”, which were technically legal. This goes to show that finding loopholes (like the one with historic horse racing machines today), was alive and well, even back in the day…

 

Casino gambling Kentucky: illegal, but there are racinos with VGMs, they are the casino substitutes of Kentucky

Online casino gambling Kentucky: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Kentucky: legal, requires licence

Online bingo Kentucky: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Kentucky: illegal

Online poker Kentucky: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Sports betting Kentucky: legal, harness racing only

Online sports betting Kentucky: legal, harness racing only

Lottery Kentucky: legal, Kentucky lottery only

Online lottery Kentucky: legal, Kentucky lottery only

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Kentucky: not specifically regulated

 

Regulatory body: Department of Charitable Gaming, Kentucky Lottery

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • bingo hall (commercial)
  • non-profit gambling (bingo, raffles, pull tabs)
  • lottery reseller

 

Gambling tax Kentucky: the lottery is taxed at a 35% tax rate

 

Parimutuel sports wagering is taxed the following way:

  • 1.5% if the daily live handle is below $1,200,000
  • 3.5% if the daily live handle is above $1,200,000

 

Sports betting is expected to be legalized in Kentucky very soon, and the proposed sports betting tax is 10.25% and 14.25% for online sports betting.

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Kentucky: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+ 24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Age limit on gambling in Kentucky: 18+

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Kentucky Revised statutes 528, Kentucky Revised Statutes- Chapter 230

Louisiana

Louisiana gambling

Gambling has interesting and relatively complicated history in Louisiana. To give you a short summary, let’s break it down, by type of gambling:

Lottery is legal in Louisiana: lottery in Louisiana was first legalized in 1868, then became illegal in 1893. And about a 100 years later, in 1990, it was legalized again.  However, selling online lottery tickets is still not allowed in Louisiana.

Sports betting is legal in Louisiana: Horse and dog racing betting had a similar history, first legalized in 1852, but banned shortly in 1868. Then, in 1971 the race tracks opened again. UPDATE 2020: Since 2020 betting and online betting on all games, teams, and players across all college and professional sports is possible and legal in Louisiana according to bill SB130. This includes fantasy sports betting.

Bingo is legal Louisiana: Bingo is legal since 1987. However, only 501(c) non-profits can conduct bingo events to fund their programs. Online bingo is not yet legal, not even for registered charities.

Casinos are legal in Louisiana: A relative newcomer on the gambling scene of Louisiana, casinos are legal since 1991 + Indian casinos are also legal (4 Native American Casinos in Louisiana) However, online casinos are not yet legal.

Video poker machines are legal in Louisiana: Video poker machines are legal in Louisiana since 1991. Since then, about half of the parishes of Louisianian legalized video poker at bars, taverns and truck stops. The video draw poker device licenses are a great way for even regular entrepreneurs to establish themselves in the gambling industry without having to spend $ millions (establishing a casino is only realistically possible for big companies, or really rich dynasties).

Non-profit gambling in Louisiana: Just like in most states, 501(c) charities are permitted to conduct certain types of games of chance for fundraising, these are: bingo, raffles, and “pools that involve games of chance”.

 

Casino gambling Louisiana: legal + Indian casinos + riverboat casinos

Online casino gambling Louisiana: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Louisiana: legal, non-profit only

Online bingo Louisiana: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Louisiana: legal in the casinos, no standalone poker clubs

Online poker Louisiana: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Sports betting Louisiana: legal, requires license

Online sports betting Louisiana: legal, requires license

Lottery Louisiana: legal, Louisiana Lottery Corporation only

Online lottery Louisiana: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some lottery sites might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Louisiana: not specifically regulated

 

Regulatory body: Louisiana Gaming Control Board

 

Available gambling licence (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • casino licence
  • non-profit gambling (raffles, bingo)
  • sports betting
  • selling lottery tickets (retailer) license

 

Gambling tax Louisiana: 

  • casinos, riverboat casinos –  effective tax rate is 26% of gross revenue
  • video poker in bars, restaurants – 26% of adjusted gaming revenue
  • racinos – 22.5%  of adjusted gaming revenue
  • truck stops – 32.5%  of adjusted gaming revenue
  • fantasy sports betting – 8% of net revenue
  • sports betting – 15% of net revenue

 

For players, taxation of casino, lottery winnings in Louisiana: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+ 24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Legal gambling age, age requirement of casinos in Louisiana: 18+ (poker, horse racing betting, non-profit bingo), 21+ (casinos, Indian casinos, riverboat casinos, lottery)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Louisiana Gaming Control Law, Louisiana Gaming Control Law – Table of Contents., Louisiana Gaming Control Act, La. R.S. 27:1 et seq, Louisiana Riverboat Economic Development and Gaming Control Act, La. R.S. 27:41 et seq, Louisiana Economic Development and Gaming Corporation Act (Landbased Casino), La. R.S. 27:201 et seq, Video Draw Poker Devices Control Law, La. R.S. 27:401 et seq, Louisiana Pari-Mutuel Live Racing Facility Economic Redevelopment and Gaming Control Act (Slots at the Track), La. R.S.27:351 et seq.

Maine

Maine gambling

Summary: The legalization of gambling in Maine started in 1950, with the legalization of horse racing betting in Scarborough Downs. This was followed in 1973 by the first Maine Native American gambling establishment, the Penobscot tribe bingo hall (which was later renamed to “Penobscot High Stakes Bingo” and it was turned into a casino, and in 2015, it closed permanently). The state lottery was established in 1974, and in 2004 the first bona fide casino opened in the state. In 2004, it was also made legal for private investors, companies, who are not associated with a tribe, to own and operate casino gambling venues, which led to the opening of Oxford Casino Hotel in 2013, Maine’s current biggest casino.

A from of online lottery was made legal in 2013 according to the bill LD 1880, which enables to purchase of lottery subscriptions online, on the webpage of the Maine State Lottery. The second form of online gambling that was made legal in Maine was fantasy sports betting, with the passing of 2017 PUBLIC Law, Chapter 303 – An Act To Regulate Fantasy Sports Contests.

The following forms of gambling are legal in the small state of Maine:

  • sports betting, harness racing betting only, no online sports betting except for fantasy sports betting
  • lottery, the Maine Lottery + online lottery, precisely, online lottery subscriptions are legal, which is a unique concept in Maine, you must buy a subscription but you can’t buy singular lottery tickets online
  • casino gambling, casinos, riverboat casinos + as per the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, the Native American tribes can have casinos as well
  • non-profit gambling (lotteries, raffles, beano/bingo, card games)

 

Casino gambling Maine: legal + Indian casinos + riverboat casinos

Online casino gambling Maine: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Maine: legal, non-profit only, except Indian bingo halls

Online bingo Maine: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Maine: legal in the casinos, no standalone poker clubs + charity poker

Online poker Maine: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Maine: legal, requires license

Online sports betting Maine: illegal, except for fantasy sports betting

Lottery Maine: legal, Maine State Lottery only

Online lottery Maine: legal, online subscriptions on the website of the Maine State Lottery only

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Maine: not specifically regulated

 

Regulatory body: Maine Gambling Control Board

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • casino licence
  • non-profit gambling (raffles, bingo)
  • sports betting
  • selling lottery tickets (retailer) license

 

Gambling tax Maine: 

  • slots – 46% of gross gaming revenue
  • tables – 16% of gross gaming revenue
  • fantasy sports betting – 10% tax on gross revenue
  • sports betting – 10% tax on gross revenue

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Maine: taxable, personal income tax applies (3.23%), and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+ 24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Gambling age in Maine: 18+ (lottery, bingo, sports betting), 21+ (casino gambling, poker)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Maine Revised Statutes – Title 17, Chapter 62: Games of Chance, Charitable Statutes and Rules

Maryland

Maryland gambling

Summary: Legal gambling started in Maryland in 1870, with the legalization of horse racing betting at the racetracks. A 100 years later, in 1972, the state got its own lottery, the Maryland Lottery. And since 2008, even casinos are allowed (maximum 6, with a maximum 16,500 VLTs across the state). Interestingly, table games are only legal since 2012.

Non-profit gambling Maryland: Since 1952, non-profit companies can conduct various forms of gambling (paddlewheels, wheel of fortune, raffles and bingo) to fund their non-profit activities.

Online gambling Maryland: Two forms of online gambling, online horse racing betting and online fantasy sports betting (since 2020) are already legal, but there is still no online lottery.

Native American gambling in Maryland: There are no Indian casinos in Maryland.

Fantasy sports betting is legal in Maryland since 2017. Greyhound racing is illegal. Social gambling is not legal in Maryland, not known how strictly this is enforced.

 

Casino gambling Maryland: legal + riverboat casinos, since 2012 table games are legal too

Online casino gambling Maryland: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Maryland: legal, non-profit only

Online bingo Maryland: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Maryland: legal in the casinos, no standalone poker clubs

Online poker Maryland: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Maryland: legal, requires license, fantasy sports betting is illegal

Online sports betting Maryland: illegal, except for horse racing betting and since 2017, fantasy sports betting

Lottery Maryland: legal, Maryland Lottery only

Online lottery Maryland: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online lottery sites might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Maryland: not specifically regulated

 

Regulatory body:  State Lottery & Gaming Control Agency

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • scratch cards selling license
  • casino license
  • non-profit gambling license

 

Gambling tax Maryland: 

  • as high as 67% tax rate on slots (the highest in the USA, details below)
  • poker 20% tax rate
  • table games (legal since 2012) 20% tax rate

 

Slot Tax Rate: Maryland’s VLT tax rates (slot machine tax, VLT means Video Lottery MAhine, a technical term for slot machines) vary by casino. Currently, owners of casinos are entitled to the
following revenue shares from VLTs:

• Horseshoe Casino Baltimore: 46%
• Maryland Live!: 49%
• Hollywood Casino Perryville: 39%
• Casino at Ocean Downs: 53%
• Rocky Gap Casino Resort: 60%
• MGM National Harbor: 44%

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Maryland: taxable, personal income tax applies (3.23%), and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+ 24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Minimum age to gamble in Maryland: 18+ (lotteries, racing, and charitable gaming), 21+ (casinos, everything else)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Maryland Criminal Law Section 12-102, Maryland Charitable Gaming Laws: Raffles,  Code of Maryland Regulations – Title 36. Maryland State Lottery and Gaming Control Agency

Massachusetts

Massachusetts gambling

The following forms of gambling are legal in Massachusetts:

  • fantasy sports betting (UPDATE: no longer legal since 2018)
  • horse racing betting and online horse racing betting
  • casinos are legal since 2018, max 3 + Indian casinos
  • slot parlours
  • lottery, Massachusetts lottery only
  • poker
  • non-profit gambling (raffles, casino or Las Vegas nights, or poker tournaments )

 

Casino gambling Massachusetts: legal, since 2018 + Indian casinos

Online casino gambling Massachusetts: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casinos might be blocked

Bingo Massachusetts: legal, non-profit only, except Indian bingo halls

Online bingo Massachusetts: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Massachusetts: legal in the casinos, no standalone poker clubs

Online poker Massachusetts: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Massachusetts: legal, requires license, fantasy sports betting is illegal

Online sports betting Massachusetts: legal, but only online horse racing betting, and since 2016, fantasy sports betting, UPDATE: fantasy sports betting is illegal in Massachusetts once again, since 2018

Lottery Massachusetts: legal, Massachusetts State Lottery only

Online lottery Massachusetts: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online lottery sites might be blocked

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Massachusetts: not specifically regulated

 

Regulatory body: Massachusetts Gaming Commission

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling):

  • selling lottery tickets
  • casino license
  • non-profit gambling

 

Gambling tax Massachusetts: 

The two full-scale casinos in Massachusetts are taxed at a rate of 25% of their gross gaming revenue.

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Massachusetts: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+ 24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Minimum age to gamble in Massachusetts: 18+ (non-profit bingo), 21+(casinos, fantasy sports betting, everything else)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: St.2018, § 154 Legalizing daily fantasy sports (DFS)., MGL c.10, §§ 37-40 Beano, raffles, compulsive gambling, MGL c.23K Massachusetts Gaming Commission – Permits up to 3 casinos and 1 slots-only casino in the state. Has several provisions particular to Indian tribes, MGL c.137 Gaming, 940 CMR 12 Regulations governing raffles, 940 CMR 13 Regulations governing bazaars, 940 CMR 30 Illegal lotteries, sweepstakes and de facto gambling establishments, 940 CMR 34 Daily fantasy sports contest operators in Massachusetts,  961 CMR Mass. Lottery Commission

 

Michigan

Michigan gambling

The following types of games of chance are legal in Michigan:

  • horse racing betting is permitted in Michigan
  • poker, online poker
  • internet sports betting is also allowed
  • online casinos
  • casinos
  • Native American casinos
  • league bowling at alleys not exceeding $1,000;
  • redemption games;
  • non-profit bingo, and Millionaire parties (casino games, organized by non-profits to fund charitable causes)
  • lottery and online lottery

 

 

Casino gambling Michigan: legal + Indian casinos, 41 casinos total

Online casino gambling Michigan: legal, one of the few states where online casinos are completely legal

Bingo Michigan: legal, non-profit only, except Indian bingo halls

Online bingo Michigan: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Michigan: legal in the casinos

Online poker Michigan: legal, requires license

Sports betting Michigan: legal, requires license, fantasy sports betting is also legal

Online sports betting Michigan: legal, requires license

Lottery Michigan: legal, Michigan Lottery only

Online lottery Michigan: legal, Michigan Lottery only

Bitcoin, cryptocurrency gambling Michigan: not specifically regulated

 

Regulatory body: Michigan Gaming Control Board

 

Available gambling licences (available to private operators, private companies or individuals, not including Native American gambling, and excluding gambling employee licenses):

  • casino license
  • sportsbook licence
  • fantasy sports betting license
  • non-profit gambling (Millionaire parties, bingo, raffles)
  • selling lottery tickets
  • retail sports betting licence (bookmaker licence)

 

 

Gambling tax Michigan: 

Casino tax is 20%  – 28% of net win (state: 8.1% + City: 10.9 %)

online casino tax: 20% -28%, progressive system, based on gambling revenue

  • $4 million: 20%
  • $4 million to less than $8 million: 22%
  • $8 million to less than $10 million: 24%
  • $10 million to less than $12 million: 26%
  • $12 million or more: 28%

 

retail sports betting tax rate : 8,4%

online sports betting 8.4%

fantasy sports betting: 8.4%

 

 

For players, taxation of gambling winnings in Michigan: taxable, personal income tax applies, and 30% withholding tax for non US residents, including illegals (can be reclaimed but it’s expensive, you need a specialized company to help you with it, not worth it if you only won a couple of hundreds of $)

+ 24% federal tax if you won (net winnings, amounts are reduced by the wagers, bet of the player):

  • $600 or more at a horse track (or if the amount you won is 300 times your original wager, even if it’s under $600)
  • $1,200 or more at a slot machine or bingo game
  • $1,500 or more in keno winnings
  • $5,000 or more in poker tournament winnings
  • in case of other gambling activities not mentioned: federal tax is payable if what you have won is 300 times the original wager/bet, even if it’s under $600, or if your gambling winnings exceed $600
  • your winnings that are subject to federal income tax withholding (either gambling withholding or other withholding)

 

Federal tax is usually automatically deducted by the brick&mortar gambling establishments, but online gambling websites don’t usually deduct it, if not sure, ask.

 

Required age to gamble in Michigan: 21+ (casinos, fantasy sports betting, online sports betting, online casinos) 18+ (everything else)

 

Main pieces of gambling legislation: Michigan Penal Code,  House Bill 4916, Lottery Act,  House Bill 3408

Minnesota

Minnesota gambling

Summary: Legal gambling in Minnesota started in 1940 with bingo (only non-profit organizations can get a bingo license). In 1983 betting on horse racing became legal as well. The state lottery was established in 1988. Native American casinos first appeared in the state in 1988, before that, there was only one tribal gambling establishment, which was a bingo hall. Poker clubs were also legalized in 1999 (only at the race tracks, according to Sec. 240.30 MN Statutes). Additionally, in the 2010s, the Minnesota Lottery sold lottery tickets online (2015-2018) but that has since been discontinued, and online lottery is interestingly no longer legal in Minnesota (the only state that has legalized online lottery, and then banned it). Fantasy sports betting should have been made legal in 2018, or 2019, but at the time of writing, it’s still hasn’t been voted on, and it remains technically illegal (some websites erroneously say it’s legal, it’s not, also some fantasy sports betting platforms accept players from Minnesota, that’s illegal, they shouldn’t accept players from the sate yet). The only form of online gambling that is legal in Minnesota currently is online horse racing betting.

Minnesota, a.k.a. the land of the 10 000 lakes currently has the following forms of gambling legalized:

  • pari-mutuel wagering on horse racing + online horse racing betting
  • poker at the race tracks
  • non-profit gambling: pull-tabs, bingo, raffles, private social bets, paddlewheels, tipboards, poker

 

+ Indian casinos since 1988.

 

Social gaming (poker game among friends, in your house) is allowed as long no one wins more than $200 per occasion. according to Statutes 609.761, and the following games can be played: cribbage, skat, sheephead, bridge, euchre, pinochle, gin, 500, smear, Texas hold’em, or whist” tournaments (all participants must be adults, they must belong to the same social circle, excluding the gambling activity, must take place in someone’s legal residence).

Technically greyhound racing betting is still legal, but there are no greyhound racing tracks in Minnesota anymore (they all went bankrupt, it’s not very popular in the state).

 

Casino gambling Minnesota: illegal, only Indian casinos are legal

Online casino gambling Minnesota: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online casino sites might be blocked

Bingo Minnesota: legal, non-profit only, except Indian gambling establishments

Online bingo Minnesota: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online bingo sites might be blocked

Poker Minnesota: legal in the casinos or at the  race tracks + social gambling

Online poker Minnesota: technically illegal, but players are not prosecuted or fined, some online poker sites might be blocked

Sports betting Minnesota: legal, horse and greyhound racing betting only

Onlin