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Gambling Sites, Laws & FAQ

U.S. Online Gambling Sites, Laws, & FAQ

First and foremost: you can legally gamble online in the USA.  Gambling laws are constantly changing on a state-by-state basis, but here’s what you need to remember: while running your own casino, sportsbook, or poker room inside the United States is not legal, individual U.S. residents will not be prosecuted for making online bets. Most importantly, all of GambleOnline’s recommended casinos are licensed, safe and secure.

In this guide, we’ve compiled everything you need to know about gambling online in the US. Readers will learn about US gambling laws, see an FAQ with common questions answered, and view a timeline of online gambling laws in the USA.

2019’s Best Online Gambling Sites for US Players

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Best Online USA Casinos

  • Bovada — With a great offering of table games, live dealers, sports betting, and poker, Bovada is our top recommended all-in-one gambling site.
  • Café Casino — Cafe features a 500%, $5000 welcome bonus for new players and every casino game in instant play form.
  • BetOnline – BetOnline offers online slots, poker, eSports, and live in-play sports betting, all with a $1000 welcome bonus.
  • Planet7 – Planet 7 Casino has fast payouts with Bitcoin, free spins, VIP promos, progressive bonuses, and all the casino games you want.
  • Slots.lv — Slots LV gives players a choice between $1000, 200% welcome bonus and a $1500, 300% Bitcoin bonus along with slots tournaments, table games, and live dealers.

The majority of these casinos accept players from all states, though some state-by-state restrictions apply. Click on the links below to continue reading for specific state-based recommendations for each site. As you can see, you’ll find plenty of good online casinos that accept US players. It’s not quite as easy to find a reliable US online casino that has sports betting and a poker room, though.

State-by-State Online Gambling Laws

A growing number of US states have regulated online gambling. Delaware, Nevada, and New Jersey were quick to legalize and license online betting sites. Pennsylvania came later, while California and other states dithered over the process. Most are waiting to see whether the US Department of Justice will ban online gambling. But even states like Texas allow for legal sweepstakes casino like Chumba Casino, so the picture is complicated.

Looking for more information about online gambling in your state? Click on your state below to get an overview of its gambling laws and sites that allow real money gambling from its residents, or see our recommended casino for each state on the right.

State Laws Recommended Casino
Alabama Bovada
Alaska Bovada
Arizona Bovada
Arkansas Bovada
California Bovada
Colorado Bovada
Conneticut Bovada
Delaware Café Casino
Florida Bovada
Georgia Bovada
Hawaii Bovada
Idaho Bovada
Illinois Bovada
Indiana Bovada
Iowa Bovada
Kansas Bovada
Kentucky Bovada
Louisiana Bovada
Maine Bovada
Maryland BetOnline
Massachusetts Bovada
Michigan Bovada
Minnesota Bovada
Mississippi Bovada
Missouri Bovada
Montana Bovada
Nebraska Bovada
Nevada Café Casino
New Hampshire Bovada
New Jersey BetOnline
New Mexico Bovada
New York Bovada
North Carolina Bovada
North Dakota Bovada
Ohio Bovada
Oklahoma Bovada
Oregon Bovada
Pennsylvania Bovada
Rhode Island Bovada
South Carolina Bovada
South Dakota Bovada
Tennessee Bovada
Texas Bovada
Utah Bovada
Vermont Bovada
Virginia Bovada
Washington Bovada
West Virginia Bovada
Wisconsin Bovada
Wyoming Bovada

US legislators continue to fight over whether to ban or regulate online gambling. Some states have passed laws to make online gambling illegal. If you’re concerned about the legality of online poker, online slots, or table games in your region, read our state reviews.

Online Gambling USA FAQ

Is online gambling legal in the US?

Many US residents are confused over the legality of US online casinos — and for good reason.  The United States is a patchwork of federal, state, and local gambling laws. The answer varies depending on where you live. Currently, states like New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New Hampshire are suing the US Department of Justice to determine whether the federal government can ban online casinos, poker rooms, and lottery sites.

Which states have legal online gambling sites?

States such as Nevada, Delaware, and New Jersey have already begun offering legal USA online gambling, and many more states will soon follow. You will not be prosecuted for betting at an offshore online casino. You cannot run your own online casino in the United States, and betting at US-based online casinos varies by state laws. However, you are definitively good to go in terms of betting at offshore online casinos.

How long will it be until the United States has legalized online gambling?

JPMorgan Chase believes as many as 20 US states will have legal online gambling by 2025, though the US’s largest financial institution adjusted this prediction down since then. to read our updates for the latest in legal US online casinos and poker.

What are the age requirements for online betting?

Each state and jurisdiction has a different requirement, but most online casinos have an age limit of 18 and over.

Can I register with more than one casino or sportsbook?

Absolutely. Many players test multiple casinos or sportsbooks before settling on a favorite. Some players shop for welcome bonuses, so they join dozens of online casinos.

Where can I play online casino games for free?

You can play online casino games for free anywhere in the United States. Create a players account, download the casino software, and play in practice mode if you want to enjoy free US online casino games.

Is online gambling as safe and fair as land-based casinos?

If you play at online gambling sites licensed in the UK, Gibraltar, Malta, Kahnawake, or a few other countries, the games are as safe and fair as any brick-and-mortar casino. It’s important that you find safe and fair online gambling sites. Read our recommendations on the best online casinos and poker sites.

History of Online Gambling in the United States

September 13th, 1961 | Federal Wire Act Passed
President John F. Kennedy signed into law the Federal Wire Act of 1961, which was intended to target illegal bookies. However, the US government has (incorrectly) tried to say this law applies to online gambling as well.

October 28, 1992 | PASPA Becomes Law

President George H.W. Bush signed into law the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA), a sports betting ban.

October 13th, 2006 | UIGEA Becomes Law

George W. Bush signs into law the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA). UIGEA makes it illegal for banks or credit card companies to process any online financial transactions for the purpose of Internet gambling.

Friday, April 15th, 2011 | Black Friday Rocks US Online Poker

Dubbed Black Friday, the FBI and Department of Justice seized major gambling sites’ domains and indicted 11 executives with money laundering, fraud, and violating the UIGEA.

December 23rd, 2011 | US Justice Department Reverses Wire Act Opinion

The US Department of Justice reversed their opinion of the Wire Act stating that the Wire Act only applied to online sports betting. Online poker, fantasy sports betting, and real money casino games are deemed legal.

June 28th, 2012 | Delaware Legalizes Online Gambling

Delaware passed the Delaware Gambling Competitiveness Act to become the first US state to legalize online gambling.

February 22nd, 2013 | Nevada Legalizes Online Gambling

Nevada’s Governor Brian Sandoval signed an online gambling bill, legalizing online poker.

November 26th, 2013 | Delaware Legalizes Online Gambling

Online gambling became legal in New Jersey on this day making NJ the third US state to legalize gambling online. Gov. Chris Christie signed into law online casinos and poker sites.

October 26th, 2017 | Pennsylvania Legalizes Online Gambling

The Pennsylvania Senate passed a bill to legalize online casino games, online poker, online sports betting and daily fantasy sports. PA became the fourth state to legalize online gambling.

May 14th, 2018 | Supreme Court Repeals PASPA

The United States Supreme Court ruled to repeal PASPA.

January 23, 2019 | US Justice Department Reverses Wire Act Decision

The US Department of Justice reversed its December 23, 2011 opinion on online gambling and the Wire Act. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein told states and gaming companies to comply by June 14, 2019. New Hampshire and New Jersey sued the DOJ.

March 29, 2019 | Illinois Legalizes Sports Betting

Illinois legalized sports betting with the “Sports Wagering Act”.

May 6, 2019| Montana Legalizes Sports Betting

Montana legalized sports betting. Gov. Steve Bullock’s veto failed to override the House and Senate votes.

June 4, 2019 | Tennessee Legalizes Sports Betting

Tennessee legalized sports betting with the “Tennessee Sports Gaming Act”.

June 12, 2019 | New Hampshire Legalizes Sports Betting

New Hampshire legalized sports betting when Governor Chris Sununu signed the bill into law.

July 26, 2019 | North Carolina Legalizes Sports Betting

North Carolina legalized sports betting on tribal casino lands with Gov. Roy Cooper’s signature.

August 29, 2019 | West Virginia Legalizes Sports Betting

West Virginia legalized sports betting and online wagering. DraftKings and FanDuel launch sportsbooks.

Sources:

Online Gambling Laws by State

LegalZoom: Online Gambling: Is It Legal?

FBI’s Congressional Testimony on Online Gambling

American Gaming Association Research

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