The past few years has seen the U.S online gambling market go from a ”All Green” to a grey market area. Before the Federal Government rolled out the UIGEA (Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act) also known as the Port Act in 2006 it was pretty much all systems go, however, after 2006 many virtual operators excited the U.S gaming market fearing the long arm of the law. If you want to find out more about the ins and outs of gambling online in the United States you can visit https://www.realmoneyaction.com/us-casinos/.
This article explores the current internet gambling landscape in the United States from a legal perspective. The question most players ask, is it legal? The short answer is yes but there’s a few things players need to know before they deposit and play.
After the UIGEA a lot of uncertainty gripped the U.S gambling market, as a result operators and payment processors set up shop in jurisdictions like Costa Rica, Curacao, Kahnawake (Canada), Antigua and Barbados that specifically targeted American players. The Federal Government said it’s not going to regulate online gambling on a national level any more but the onus is now on each state to regulate it. To date only three states namely Delaware, Nevada and New Jersey regulated online gambling while many other states bills that will see regulation through in the pipeline.
Whether top European casinos such as William Hill, Ladbrokes and Bet365 will enter the U.S again remains to be seen. 888 Casino said that it’s applied for a gambling license to operate in the country. Although banks don’t process credit card payments from casinos they do offer clients alternative banking methods to fund that includes cryptocurrencies (Bitcoin, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, Dogecoin, Ripple), wire transfer and checks by courier. Cryptocurrencies have become extremely popular because they erase geographical boundaries, they’re secure, cheap and the user has a degree of anonymity.
Federal Law Doesn’t Stop You From Gambling Online
In terms of online casino software, U.S players are presented with RealTime Gaming, Betsoft, Saucify, Rival, Wager Gaming Technology and then there are the state-licensed casinos starting with Delaware, Nevada, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Just because a casino is not licensed and regulated by a U.S state it doesn’t mean it’s illegal. Popular USA casinos are MYB Casino, Sloto Cash, Cherry Jackpot, Ignition casino and many others are fully licensed in offshore jurisdictions – patrons must be 21 years or older before they can deposit and play here.
In a House hearing Catherine Hanaway, U.S Attorney general said that any bets made online is not against federal law. To date no American has been arrested for gambling online. We just want to clarify that banks are not allowed to process credit/debit card payments from online casinos but it’s perfectly legal for players to play any casino game providing they use cryptocurrencies, wire transfer or checks. We do advise players to declare their online gambling wins to the IRS (Internal Revenue Service) because if it’s above the threshold they’re liable to pay tax on it.
In May 2018 the U.S Supreme Court lifted the ban on sports betting by allowing it to be regulated on a state-by-state basis.
Frequently Asked Questions USA Online Casinos
If I’m from the States can I gamble online?
Absolutely. There is not federal law that bans it, it’s still possible to contravene state law but we haven’t heard of a case where a player received a fine or being prosecuted.
How many states legalized online gambling?
To the best of our knowledge only Delaware, Nevada, New Jersey and Pennsylvania legalized it. With that being said many other states already have bills on the table that will regulate it.
The advantages of state-by-state regulation is casinos are allowed to launch advertising campaigns because they pay taxes. For what it’s worth regulated sites creates much-needed employment and the tax paid by them goes towards education and infrastructure.
Do U.S Online Casinos Accept Cryptocurrencies?
Yes they do. As a matter of fact most of them not only accept Bitcoin but Dogecoin, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum and Litecoin. Furthermore using a crypto to deposit and play at a Bitcoin Casino is a nice way to get around the UIGEA.
All Bitcoin payments are cleared within minutes, players aren’t confined to the casino’s weekly withdrawal limit, there’s very little transaction fees, the games are provably fair and secure, plus players don’t need to provide any personal documents, just an email address.
How Do I Use Bitcoin To Gamble Online?
In order to get the ball rolling you must set up a Bitcoin wallet first, the most popular ones are Xapo, Coinbase, Bitfinex, BlockChain and ChangeTip. The next step is to purchase bitcoins, this can be done by linking your bank account with your wallet. Once you’ve purchased your bitcoins you can play any online casino game to your heart’s desire.
Aside From Cryptocurrencies Are Other Banking Methods Available?
Most U.S operators list American Express, MasterCard, eCheck (digital checks), Discover, Skrill, Neteller, Western Union and Eco Card. It’s important to check which deposit/withdrawal method is accepted by your country.
Keep in mind that ewallets (Neteller, Skrill) are only for non-U.S players and operators charge a small transaction fee. Another important thing to look at is the casino’s weekly withdrawal limit, withdrawal limits range from $2,500 up to $15,000 pending on a player’s VIP status.
What Are The Perks Offered By USA Online Casinos?
The very first comp given by a site is the deposit, match or welcome bonus. It’s only given to first time depositors, the player’s deposit is normally matched with the same amount he or she deposited. For example, if the bonus is 100% up to $500 and the player deposited $500 he’s entitled to a bonus of $500, instead of playing with $500 he can now play with $1,000. Bear in mind that each bonus has a wagering requirement attached to it that must be cleared first before any wins can be withdrawn.
Also, each game counts differently towards the roll over requirement of the bonus. Slots, keno, scratch cards and bingo usually contribute 100%, table games (blackjack, roulette, baccarat) count 10% to 20% and video poker 5%. Some bonuses can be sticky (play purposes only) while others can be cashed out once the play-through is cleared.
Regular depositors get comps that can be exchanged for real cash, for every $10 wagered on slots 1 comp is given. Once you have 100 comps they can be exchanged for $1. VIPs are rolled into programs with different levels, the perks (special bonuses, comps, free spins, no deposit bonuses, faster withdrawal periods, birthday gifts) increase with each new level.
In summary. Online gambling is a favorite pastime in the U.S, although it’s considered a felony if a player gambles at an offshore site, no player has been slapped with a fine or prosecuted yet. Therefore, it’s safe to say that from this perspective alone its perfectly legal.
The U.S government states that it won’t be able to step in if an operator licensed in another jurisdiction refuses to pay the player. Luckily there are watchdog sites like Casinomeister and Affiliate Guard Dog that warns U.S players against unscrupulous sites and they can ‘turn on the screws’ if the casino still refuses to pay the player. Truth be told no casino likes negative press unless it’s a rogue site.