Where Is Sports Betting Legal In The United States?
If something goes wrong or an operator refuses to pay, the customers of illegal betting sites have no recourse. More than a dozen states have legal online lottery sales to some degree. Some states now sell a full range of lottery products online, including access to instant win games and keno along with tickets to all drawing games. The Department of Justice issued a memorandum in 2011 stating that it has reinterpreted the Wire Act as only applying to sports betting.
Decades of regulated sports betting experience and an established track record helped make it the gold standard for sports betting. Online sports wagering is available, but bettors must first register for an account in person at a casino. The Gaming Control Act, introduced during the state’s 2019 legislative session, would have sanctioned the use of mobile sports betting apps anywhere in the state. Sen. Willie Simmons started the conversation, but other MS lawmakers were not ready to change the state’s sports betting operations.
Wagering could begin as early as 2023 if approved, but in-person only and not online. Ohio is another sports-crazy state that’s behind in legalizing sports gambling, especially given the action in many of its Midwestern neighbors. Republican Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker and members of both parties in the Democrat-controlled General Court support sports betting. Another entrant, Handle 19, is readying to enter the marketplace with a retail location. The state launched betting on March 9, 2020, (just ahead of an NCAA Tournament that didn’t wind up happening) and launched online betting in June 2020.
Republican leadership within the GOP-controlled legislature championed the sentiment and substance of SB256 but balked when video lottery terminals came into the conversation. Numerous bills targeted at legalizing sports betting in Vermont failed to pass muster but resurfaced in 2021 for further consideration. The state legislature approved rules for online sports betting during the 2021 session. Sports betting in Oregon is currently legal via the Oregon Lottery’s ScoreBoard digital app and in-person at two tribal casinos.
The Oregon Lottery dove in last year with its online sports betting app and two coastal Oregon tribes added sportsbooks to their casino offerings. Washington state’s sports wagering authorization allows betting on a wide range of sporting events including other college sports, professional sports, overseas leagues and Olympic and World Cup competitions. It also allows betting on increasingly popular video game tournaments, commonly called esports. The Spanish Gambling Act was introduced in 2011 and made it obligatory for operators to obtain license to offer betting services.
Those states include Montana, Tennessee, Colorado, North Carolina, and Michigan. Online sports betting, meanwhile, allows bettors the ability to wager from anywhere within the geographic location of their state. That means that bettors do not have to spend money traveling to a destination. More importantly, it means that bettors can access betting lines before they change, which can lead to more profitable betting in the long run.