Despite being widely available, online gambling is still illegal in several states. Those who violate the law face serious penalties. But is it possible to gamble legally online in a state where the activity is prohibited? The answer to this depends on a number of factors, including the state’s gambling laws and whether it allows players to wager real money.
While online sports betting has taken off in a big way in some states, online casino play is catching on much slower. As a result, only six states currently have legal online casinos, with New Jersey and Pennsylvania leading the pack. However, that could change in the near future as more states introduce their iGaming markets.
The following table provides a brief overview of the current state of online gambling in each of the 50 U.S. states. It includes which types of gambling are legal in each state, how old a person must be to gamble, and what minimum age a person must be to place a bet.
Connecticut, Delaware, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia have passed laws that allow for online casino games. These states also allow players to wager on online poker games, although a few of them have restrictions on this type of gaming.
Hawaii and Utah are the only states that don’t have any form of online gambling. The Aloha State prohibits any form of online gambling, while Utah’s laws only permit in-person gambling.
Alaska is another state that hasn’t moved forward with making online casino gambling legal. The state has a number of tribal casinos, but it’s unclear how long it will take before the market is ready for online casino games.
Maryland legalized online sports betting in November of 2022, but it hasn’t yet made a move to legalize online casino play. The state is a short drive from both New Jersey and Pennsylvania, which have already launched their iGaming markets, so it’s likely that Maryland will follow suit in the near future.
Florida is one of the most populous states in the country, but it’s been slow to make any moves to legalize online casino gambling. The state has seven tribal casinos that offer online gambling for residents, but a full-scale iGaming market may be a few years away.
In December of 2021, Massachusetts legalized online sports betting. But unlike other states that have rolled out their iGaming markets, the Bay State didn’t include online casino play in the legislation. This could change in the future, especially as more states like Massachusetts look to follow the lead of New Jersey and Pennsylvania. In the meantime, fans of the state can visit the many legal Massachusetts casinos to enjoy all that they have to offer. A statewide online casino is expected to launch sometime in 2024. It’ll partner with major operators like BetMGM and Caesars, though it may be a few years before the site is up and running. Stay tuned for more updates.