Is Blackjack Legal Where I Live?
As one of the most popular casino games, players from around the world are always looking for great places to play.
You can find thousands of local businesses offering blackjack games in the world, but you also have options to play online.
A question I often receive is about the legality of online play. This creates an interesting discussion, because there’s rarely a simple answer. I’ve put together some information for you below that covers playing at legal blackjack sites in hopes of having a place to point people that ask me about it.
What makes it Legal or Illegal?
Depending on how far you’re willing to dig, you can find opinions about the legality of playing blackjack online ranging from legal everywhere to legal almost nowhere.
Some jurisdictions have legalized online gambling for businesses willing to follow the rules and regulations. The UK is an example of a legalized market. They have specific laws in place that allow online casinos to operate within the law.
Other jurisdictions don’t have any laws concerning online gambling. If you live in one of these places you can probably play without worrying about legal ramifications.
You’ll find that other places have a mix of confusing laws and regulations. The US is an example of this. In a few states you’ll find laws that specifically outlaw online gambling, and a few states have laws that specifically allow some forms of online gaming. Most states don’t have any laws concerning online gambling.
To further complicate things for players (or people who want to play) in the United States is the fact that hundreds of online casinos accept their play, and have for years. I’m also not aware of a player ever being charged for playing online.
The US does have laws in place that may make it illegal for financial institutions to send money to online gambling establishments, but even these laws aren’t clear. I’ve read opinions supporting both sides of the issue, but many believe that when it comes right down to it the large banks can do whatever they want in this area.
Most banks in the US currently avoid gambling transactions if they can help it, except in the states where online gambling is specifically legal.
Is It Legal Where I Live?
Of course this depends on where you live, but if you want to be 100% sure you need to speak with a lawyer who understands gaming law. Nothing I discuss on this page can be used as legal advice, because I’m not an attorney and I don’t offer legal advice.
If you live in the UK or other jurisdiction that offers legal blackjack online all you have to do is find a licensed casino or gaming establishment. Follow the steps to sign up for a free account, try the games for free to make sure you like them, and then arrange a deposit in the cashier area.
Unless it’s clearly against the local laws, most people play online who want to. You can find blackjack sites and casinos where you can play in any country I know of. Some countries have fewer choices than others, but you can even find online casinos operating in the states in the US that expressly forbid online gambling.
If you live where it’s illegal to play online but want to play anyway, you need to do some extensive research after speaking to your lawyer. The first thing you need to find out is if it’s really illegal or if it’s something the media talks about but hasn’t verified.
You may find this hard to believe, but I’ve been told numerous times that online gambling is illegal is areas that I know don’t have any laws. I know because I’ve spent the time investigating it instead of believing something in the newspaper.
I know players that play online without worrying about the ramifications simply because other players they know do it without any trouble.
The only thing I can say is if you find actual laws against it where you live and play anyway you’re a criminal. I’m not judging you or your actions, but even if you don’t get arrested today, if you’re breaking the law there’s always a chance you could get arrested in the future.
Some players compare it to going a few miles per hour over the speed limit. They say it’s technically breaking the law but it’s a victimless crime. Only you can decide what you’re willing to do.
How Legality Creates Deposit Issues
I’ve already pointed out your ability to find paces willing to offer online play in most areas. But finding a place to play is only half the battle. You also have to be able to get money in and out of the blackjack site.
Popular e-wallets like Neteller only operate in certain countries. For example, US residents can’t use Neteller to fund an online casino account.
The best option to find out what methods you can use is contacting the support department of your chosen casino. Tell them where you’re located and ask what they have available for both deposits and withdrawals.
How to Play Safe
When you play in unregulated areas you can do a few things that help your experience stay safe. You can find online casinos and blackjack sites that don’t have your best interests in mind, but you’ll also find many solid businesses that have a long track record of taking care of their players.
I always try to find out how long a casino has been in business, what company owns the business, and see if I can find many complaints about their business practices. Though it’s not always a perfect way to find out more about an online blackjack site, you should ask your friends who play online for a recommendation.
The other thing I always avoid is depositing any amount that I can’t live without. If I make a mistake and get taken advantage of at least it’s not a life changing amount. (For the record I’ve played online for over 10 years and have only dealt with outright crooks a couple times. Neither was for much money. The key is doing a little research before making a deposit.)
Finding a clear answer about legal blackjack sites is difficult in many parts of the world. If you’re lucky enough to live where online gambling is licensed and regulated you just have to decide which legal blackjack casino to join.
When you face uncertain legal issues where you live you have to consider all your options and decide if you want to play or not.