Anyone wanting to play DFS games in Seattle will be frustrated, as none of the major players operate in Washington State due to its strict legal position on sports betting, including DFS sites, which – on the whole – had avoided the federal ban that ran between 1992 and 2018. The situation may change in future, following the Supreme Court’s decision, but all attempts so far to amend betting laws have ended in failure
None of the major Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) websites operate in Seattle, or in Washington State as a whole, due to the State’s strict legal position on gambling.
It is one of several States – along with Alabama, Arizona, Hawaii, Idaho, Louisiana, Montana, and (surprisingly) Nevada – in which no daily fantasy sports operator, as of June 2019, operates.
Washington State has some of the strictest anti-gambling laws in the US, with certain activity constituting a felony. Therefore, the only sensible advice to anyone who may want to bet on fantasy – or real – sports here is brief and to the point: Don’t.
Is Daily Fantasy Betting Legal in Washington State?
The fact of the matter is: anyone looking to take part in fantasy sports betting in America should be aware of existing State laws. In Washington State, it’s illegal. That should be the end of the story – but according to some reports, a large number of people are taking part in DFS illicitly or via loopholes – such as playing from other states.
The Fantasy Sports & Gaming Association (FSGA) is working to get such games legalised in these states – and changes to the sports betting regulations could mean a softening in attitudes and changes at State level.
There was, in 2015, an attempt by lawmakers to legalise pay-to-play online fantasy sports which would have allowed websites such as DraftKings, FanDuel, Yahoo! and Fantasy Draft to operate legally in Washington State, but to date there have been no changes to the law to that effect.
As a result, those websites – the major players in DFS, accounting for the vast majority of the DFS market across the USA – have blocked users in Washington State from playing their games.
The State’s strict position on gambling may change in future, following the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the federal ban on sports betting in America, which ran between 1992 and 2018. Some have gone so far as to predict that DFS could be one of the first ways legal sports betting finds its way into Washington State.