American Online Gambling

American online gambling has never been in a healthier state. Bills are passed, dozens of sites and apps are open for business. 50% of Americans will live in the states with legal sports gambling options by 2024. New York City has just opened its first casino and sportsbook at Turning Stone gambling venue (see video below). For the first time, players in Nevada, New Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania can place bets on sports (Super Bowl and NBA Finals, College Sports etc.), try slot machines, or play poker online, via app or from the comfort of their own homes. US Bookies are now legal and regulated in the USA. 

And more places in the US are starting to get in on the action. In 2019 most US states have some kind of gambling legislation in development. And while the legal process can be slow, expect more states to join the leading pack in the years ahead.

At AmericanGambler.com, we keep you informed on which American states have legalized online gambling, which states are due to pass laws, and what games you can play. We’ll even show you the most trustworthy sites to play on if you live in the right US states.

There are currently several US states that offer some form of online legalized gambling. That number will jump to five-seven in summer 2019 when West Virginia joins the pack. Also, recently the Stars group (FoxBet), TheScore, Pointsbet and Draftkings sportsbook partnered with Penn National to provide sports betting platforms in Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Massachussets, Michigan, Ohio, Texas, Missisippi, Missouri, Ohio, Louisiana and West Virginia. 

Delaware, Nevada, and New Jersey were the pioneering trio of states that introduced their own interstates gaming laws in 2012 and 2013. Players must be located within state lines to play online, but you can oftentimes sign up for accounts if you are based in other states.

Do any US states ban gambling?

Gambling is a popular pastime in the US and many residents have visited local land casinos to play exciting games. Now that online casinos are available there is the option to access the same games from home either by visiting state run sites or offshore casinos. There are just two US states that completely ban gambling activities, and those are Utah and Hawaii. 

American Gambling Sites 2019/2020

There are dozens of legal gambling sites offering real money sports betting, casino games, poker tournaments, DFS play, esports and lotteries to American citizens. You have to be located in the states where it is allowed to gamble online, for example, in Delaware (BetAmerica), PA (Pabets), NJ (Unibet NJ) etc. and soon New York (2020?). 

The Growth of Online Sports Betting in USA

Traditionally in the US, sports betting has been restricted to big sportsbooks in Nevada and New Jersey, and a handful of other states that have some form of legal betting. Many other states, however, have pari-mutuel betting on local and off-track horse races.

On a federal level, the Wire Act of 1961 historically prohibited betting on sports and races by phone across state lines. The aging law was also used to restrict online sports betting.

That was until the US Supreme Court scrapped the PASPA to allow for the first time betting on individual sports. In reaction, some states have been busy first launching brick ‘n’ mortar sportsbooks and their first legal online sports wagering sites.

Sports betting and DFS (Daily Fantasy Sports) is now available in more US states than ever. It’s likely that sports wagering legislation may appear in 2020 or 2021 in states that have traditionally banned non-parimutuel betting. There are more legal American bookies to launch their apps and online platforms in the fututre. Offshore betting sites like bovada, betonline etc. either would need to comply to the new reality or be banned. There are already examples when affiliate sites linking to unlicensed bookies were banned in New Jersey. 

The Future of Online Gambling in the USA

There is little appetite on Capitol Hill to pass a federal law legalizing all forms of online betting across the US.

But that hasn’t stopped individual states going it alone. There is a slow ripple effect of legalized states bleeding into neighboring states, so in 2019, 2020 and 2021 we should see more US states passing new laws. For example, more than 25% of all bets placed online in New Jersey are coming from New York residents who are waiting when the state legalizes online wagering.

Who’s next?

West Virginia, which showed no appetite for legal gambling, has made formal arrangements for online gaming through WV Lottery. Existing land-based casinos will partner with online operators to offer sports betting and online casino games under license.

New Hampshire legalized sports betting in 2019, becoming the sixth state in the union to pass some sort of sports betting bill.

Washington DC approved online sports betting in 2019. The DC Office of Lottery & Gaming will issue sports betting licenses to brick ‘n’ mortar operators and mobile apps could flow.

Michigan could become the next state to offer legal online gambling in 2020. Online lottery has been available since 2014 and has well-established tribal casinos. There is also an appetite from some state senators for legalizing.

So, what states are next in line to legalize online gambling?

Many US states are looking at adopting new laws that would allow residents to place wagers online or using a mobile device. Most states are currently focusing on online sports betting over online casinos. In the coming years (2020/2021), you will find a huge surge in the industry and many states will have passed new online gambling laws. The states that have made strides to enact new laws include Ohio, California, South Carolina, Montana, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Massachusetts, Maryland, Missouri, Indiana, Michigan, Connecticut, Illinois, and Kentucky.

Biggest Gambling Events in the USA

Some of the world’s biggest sports events and horse races take place every year in the US. And where there is a major sporting contest there are millions of dollars being wagered on it. Here are five of the biggest.

Super Bowl 

The Super Bowl is the NFL’s annual showpiece, the game played annually between the NFC (National Football Conference) and AFC (American Football Conference) champions. Over 100m viewers tune in to the Super Bowl, and in 2019 it is estimated that nearly $200m of bets were placed on the game across bookmakers in Nevada and New Jersey.

US gamblers can now place bets on the Super Bowl via legalized sportsbooks online in New Jersey, PA and Delaware. Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) sites also offer markets and big-money guarantees on the match outcome and props.

WHEN TO GAMBLE on Super Bowl: February
WHERE TO BET: Land-based sportsbooks (Nevada, New Jersey), online sportsbooks (Iowa, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania), DFS sites.
TOTAL WAGERED (estimated):
$181 million (2019 Super Bowl)

Belmont Stakes

The Belmont Stakes is an American Grade I race and one of the largest thoroughbred meets in the USA. It takes place at Belmont Park in New York every June. Sir Winston pulled off a 10/1 shock in June 2019 by winning the $1.5m Belmont Stakes. It is a huge American gambling event. 

WHEN TO GAMBLE on Belmont Stakes: June
WHERE TO BET: NYRA Bets, 4NJBets, DRF Bets, land-based sportsbooks, pari-mutuel racetracks, online sportsbooks (Iowa, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania), online horse racing sites, DFS sites
TOTAL WAGERED (estimated):
$102m (2019)

Kentucky Derby

The Kentucky Derby is one of the oldest horse races in the world and ran its 145th meet in 2019. Over $250m was wagered on the race from all sources for the 2019 race – an 11% increase on the race from 2018. TwinSpires, the official betting partner of the Kentucky Derby, handled over $30m in bets on the race alone.

WHEN TO GAMBLE on Kentucky Derby: April
WHERE TO BET: NYRA Bets, 4NJBets, TwinSpires, land-based sportsbooks, pari-mutuel racetracks, online sportsbooks (Iowa, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania), online horse racing sites, DFS sites
TOTAL WAGERED (estimated):
$250.9m (2019)

NBA Finals 

The NBA Finals is the season-end championship series for the National Basketball Association (NBA). The six-game series was contested between the Toronto Raptors and the Golden State Warriors, with the Raptors triumphing 4-2. For the 2019 NBA Finals, over $50m was wagered at Nevada sportsbooks alone. That was an increase of $19m on the previous year’s Finals.

WHEN TO GAMBLE on NBA Finals: May-June
WHERE TO BET: Land-based sportsbooks (Nevada, New Jersey), online sportsbooks (Iowa, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania), DFS sites
TOTAL WAGERED (estimated):
$51m (Nevada sportsbooks)

US Open Tennis 

The US Open is one of the biggest tennis events of the year and is, along with Wimbledon, the French Open, and the Australian Open, one of four Grand Slam tournaments. Tennis is now a major market for online sportsbook and DFS (Daily Fantasy Sports) gamblers in the US. In summer 2019, DraftKings reported that the Wimbledon men’s final was the biggest single match for tennis in its history. The 2019 US Open could surpass that.

The US Open in 2018 was won by Novak Djokovic in the men’s and Naomi Osaka in the ladies. $53m in prize money was awarded in total.

WHEN TO GAMBLE ON US Open: August-September
WHERE TO BET: Land-based sportsbooks (Nevada, New Jersey), online sportsbooks (Iowa, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania), DFS sites
TOTAL WAGERED (estimated): n/a

How Do You Start Gambling in the USA?

There is more legalized and regulated gambling in the US than ever. But you have to be mindful of individual state laws. Because there is no federal law on gambling, each state has different legal ages for everything from sports betting to poker and lottery to horse racing.

Check out our state-by-state guide and check the minimum legal age for each different market. Reputable sites will also carry information on responsible gambling and where to get help in the US if you have a problem.

First, you will need to sign up for an account. Before you register, make sure you are of legal age to play and – if applicable – located in the correct state in order to play for real money. If your VPN reveals you are outside the jurisdiction you won’t be able to open an account.

Step by Step: Opening an online gambling account in the US

1 – Enter your personal information. This includes your name, date of birth, and email. You will have to create a unique username and password to proceed. You may also have to answer at least two security questions for future access.

2 – Enter your home address and Social Security Number. Under state gaming laws in places like New Jersey and Nevada, a valid SSN is required in order to verify your state of residence and age. It’s also used to report any taxable winnings to the IRS.

3 – Create your account. You will be sent a confirmation email. Click on the message to complete the registration process.

4 – Install geolocation software. To verify your location, you may have to install a geolocation program like GeoComply. This is used by gambling sites to confirm you are within state lines when you log on and play. You may also have to send a copy of your photo ID (passport, driver’s license) and a recent utility bill when making a first withdrawal.

5 – Make a deposit. Once you have registered your account, you are free to make a first deposit and start gambling. You can take advantage of a no deposit bonus or load your account with a valid US banking option and claim some free cash when you bet.

Gambling Tax in the United States 

In the US, gambling winnings may have to be reported to the Inland Revenue Service (IRS). In most cases, the gambling site will inform the IRS when paying out winnings. Some tax may be withheld too.

The stipulations are quite clear on whether you need to pay tax and inform the IRS. Under state laws, the gambling sites must inform the IRS if a bet is big enough to be taxed.

The IRS also requires you to keep records of all your gambling wins and losses. It’s important to keep hold of tickets and payment slips (if you are betting in a land-based bookmaker or casino), or printouts of your online gambling account record.

You will need details of:

Date of wager
Type of game/activity
Name and address of casino or sportsbook
Total winnings or losses

You can also deduct losses from your overall tax liability. In many cases, you may have more losses than winnings so it’s vital you keep track when it comes to filing a return.

Game or wager paying over $600 at odds of 300/1 or more:
– Customer receives a form W-2G for every qualifying bet. Forms are generated automatically
– Player must report win on annual tax return and pay a flat 25 percent tax
– A copy is sent to the IRS and the customer

Game or wager paying $5,000 or more at odds of 300/1:
– Gambling site withholds 25 percent of total payout for payment to the IRS
– W-2G forms are created automatically
– A copy is sent to the IRS and the customer

In general, gambling winnings include money earned from all casino games, sports bets, horse racing bets, raffles, and poker. Individual states like Nevada and New Jersey also have some flat tax laws on lottery winnings.

Gambling Age in Your State

The minimum gambling age in the United States differs from state to state, from activity to activity. For example, you can start gambling on horse racing from age of 18 in Massachusetts, but from age of 21 in Iowa. Check out US gambling age guide.  

Payment methods for Online Gambling in the USA

For American Gambling you can use different and popular payment methods, both for depositing and withdrawals. Land-based, online sportsbooks and casinos accept Visa and Master Cards, Prepaid Cards and Checks. For online wagering you can use paypal, ewallets, cryptocurrency and PayNearMe options.  

Top 3 American Gambling TV Programs

With subscription services and online streaming leading (ESPN+, fuboTV etc.) the way in gambling in the US, there is a host of shows and channels that American gamblers can get access to. Whether it’s poker, sports betting or DFS, there’s something available on TV or online. Recently, NBC regional Network decided to run gambling broadcast shows. They started with the NBC Sports Philadelphia+, the channel launched The Daily Line betting show (from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.).

Fantasy Sports Network

Fantasy Sports Network (FNTSY) is the US’s first TV and radio service dedicated to Daily Fantasy Sports. Shows run throughout the day, starting with The Morning Betting Line. It’s a show that previews upcoming games and markets and rounds up the previous day’s action.

GameTime Decisions is broadcast live from the land-based FanDuel Sportsbook at the Meadowlands racetrack in New Jersey and focuses on the best of the upcoming contests.  At the Betting Window, which airs Tuesday to Sunday, boasts insight from athletes and gamblers alike.

World Series of Poker

The world’s biggest poker series is now streamed live every summer on dedicated channel, PokerGO, in partnership with ESPN in the US. Every year, the WSOP hosts over 75 poker tournaments from its Las Vegas base of the Rio All-Star Hotel & Casino. The highlight is the $10,000 Main Event with a first prize worth over $7m.

The subscription service covers the world’s biggest live events, and there is a full range of event replays on-demand. PokerGO is available on Apple TV, Amazon FireTV, and PokerGO.com.

Poker After Dark

Also available from PokerGO, Poker After Dark features some of the biggest names in poker. The iconic show was resurrected by PokerGO with some of the original stars of the mid-2000s show. Big pros compete at the cash tables in a battle of poker skills and psychology.

Top 3 Super Bowl Gambling Podcasts

Looking to get an edge around Super Bowl time? Check out our top picks of the best podcasts online.

NFL.com
Where: nfl.com/podcasts

The official home of the Super Bowl has dozens of podcasts running through the year. There’s even a regular DFS – NFL Fantasy Live – with the latest news and tips.

RPO: Rome Pryce Opinion
Where: player.fm/series/rpo-rome-pryce-opinion

Join Trevor Pryce and Jim Rome in one of the hottest NFL podcasts around. Player.FM is oftentimes the best place for Super Bowl news and opinions. Rome and Pryce’s weekly podcasts is one of the best.

Laces Out
Where: listennotes.com/podcasts/laces-out-barstool-sports-_ajn5x21wPl/

Former NFL star Willie Colon and Tommy Smokes head up this popular podcast, presented by DFS outfit FanDuel. The weekly podcast features all the best Super Bowl previews, NFL gossip, and players of the week.