Can You Gamble Online Legally in the US?
When the internet came on the scene in the 1990s, gambling sites quickly took advantage of its ability to circumvent government regulation and prohibition. The popularity of online gambling prompted Congress and the Department of Justice to explore the applicability of current law and whether new regulations were needed. Throughout the years, many states have experimented with different forms of legal online gambling, and it is now possible for more Americans than ever to gamble in casinos, place sports wagers or play poker from the comfort of their own homes or mobile devices.
It was always thought that if a state regulated online gambling, it would soon become an industry leader in this space. However, the journey to legal online gambling in the United States has not been a smooth one. While most US residents are now able to gamble legally through regulated sites, it’s important for individuals to check their local laws and ensure they are doing so in compliance with all federal and state guidelines.
There is still much work to be done to make sure all types of online gambling are legal in the US. The Supreme Court’s PASPA ruling in May of 2018 opened the door to nationwide sports betting, and it has since been up to individual states to decide whether or not they want to permit online gambling as well.
Most states have specific laws in place to prohibit certain types of gambling activities, and it’s important for individuals to understand these laws before attempting to participate in any type of casino or poker game. For example, some states have laws that prohibit computer gambling, while others may only prohibit the activity if it involves real-world exchanges of money and is conducted within state lines. Other states have more relaxed rules, allowing social or charitable gambling, as long as the person is over the age of eighteen.
The state of New York has been moving slowly in its efforts to legalize online gambling. New York residents have been able to gamble at legal sportsbooks in nearby states, such as Illinois and New Jersey, but it’s expected that NY will have to wait until 2022 or later to see its first online casinos go live.
In December of 2019, Michigan became the fifth US state to legalize online poker, making it a major player in this space. Michigan’s governor, Gretchen Whitmer, signed the legislation that positions the Great Lakes State for an active role in online sports betting and gambling as well.
In order to be fully legal, it’s important that any regulated online gambling site has its license in hand. To obtain a license, the casino must meet all the requirements set by its regulatory body. It must also offer a safe, secure environment for its players and provide customer support in the language of the host country. To ensure that the site is complying with all regulations, it must be audited regularly.