The legal situation regarding online sports betting states in the USA is nothing if not multi-faceted, with each state having its own rules and regulations. In this guide, we explain the legalities of each individual jurisdiction so you can easily discover what is available to you in a moment!

Before we look into individual gambling by state, it’s a good idea to understand the context through which state laws work. While there are many decades of legislation which are noteworthy, the most relevant to online betting would be the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992. It is commonly known as PASPA.

This effectively outlawed all sports betting across the nation with very few exceptions. In the modern day, this meant that online sports betting sites were also banned. However, this was overturned by the Supreme Court in May 20181, allowing individual jurisdictions to decide whether they wanted to become legal betting states. This is why, when we talk about legal betting sites in the United States, most of the relevant history is so recent.

You may imagine that all that’s relevant to know is whether your state allows you to bet on sports legally, but there’s actually many more variables across online sports betting states than most realize. So much so that two states with legal sports betting can offer wildly different experiences, with the below being the most common distinctions:

  • Whether you need to register in person
  • The legality of college sports (including whether you can bet on in-state teams and player props)
  • Whether you need to be physically located in a relevant retail location to use online sportsbook apps
  • The legality of esports
  • If you need to be a resident of the state to bet in-state
  • Availability and legality of fantasy betting
  • Legality of horse racing (this very commonly has distinct laws from other sports)
  • Number of licenses
  • Minimum age

These are just some examples. All state’s gambling laws are an ever evolving, distinct, and complicated entity.

BetMGM Home Page Screenshot
BetMGM State Selection Page (Source: BetMGM)

Below is a list of all states which have chosen to make sports betting legal and are currently available to bet on right now online. We will also be making clear, as much as possible, the parameters of their legality, so you have the most comprehensive idea possible of what you can legally bet on. Please note that this list is of online sports betting states, and there are some where betting is legal in retail outlets but not online.

The states listed here are in alphabetical order. If your location isn't here, this means that gambling in your state was not legally available at the time of writing.

Arizona

Famously launching legal sports betting on September 9th, the first day of the NFL season, Arizona has become one of the most popular states for online wagering. This came about following a 23-6 vote on April 12th 2021 by the Arizona State Senate, after which the signing of HB 27722 a substitute for the bill SB 1797, took place. The latter began its legal life in the Senate back on the 2nd February 2021.

Now, 20 sports licenses have been made available, with each allowing two online skins alongside brick-and-mortar betting, meaning a potential of 40 online bookmakers overall. Over 30 slots are already filled, but there are still more on the way. These licenses allow for betting on almost every sport, including fantasy betting and college sports. Although you cannot bet on individual performances in college games, you can bet on seasonal performances, such as the winner of the Rotary Lombardi Award, should such a market be available.

Betting on high school sports in general is prohibited, or bets on injuries or penalties. That said, there is nothing in the law about betting on non-sporting events such as the presidential elections or The Oscars. The regulatory body for the state is the Arizona Department of Gaming, who oversee arguably one of the broadest selections of excellent sportsbooks currently available in the United States.

Arkansas

It’s been a slow but steady crawl towards making sports betting legal for Arkansas. Since 2019, they allowed betting at three casinos solely, their initial response to the 2018 PASPA overturn. Finally, the Arkansas Joint Betting Committee finalized the legalization which would make sports betting online broadly legal in February 2022. Sports betting legal options include almost all major sports, including college sports, with only political elections and virtual sports being explicitly prohibited.

These laws allow for up to eight online sportsbooks to join, but thus far, many of the big names have failed to take them up on that offer. The first online sportsbook from Southland Casino and Betly launched on March 5th 2022, and has only been joined by Bet Saracen, the online version of Saracen casino. The reason for this is that any major sportsbook in Arkansas must partner up with one of the three state casinos discussed before and split a whopping 51% of their revenue with them.

Considering that there are so many other states which do not have such stringent rules, we’re not surprised that typically enthusiastic operators such as FanDuel have not been their usual gung-ho selves here like they have with other online sports betting states. Nonetheless, it remains early days for Arkansas among legal betting states, and there’s plenty of time for more operators to add themselves to the currently limited selection of casinos.

Colorado

Voters approved sports betting in the Centennial State during the 2019 November elections, with both retail and online bets already underway by May 2020. Gambling legislation rarely has a turnaround of six months, so you sense the enthusiasm there. This is backed up by their record setting $200 million in month betting handle, putting them in the top six online sports betting states for dollars bet all time in 2022.

All this is in no small part thanks to the many excellent operators which call Colorado their home, such BetMGM and DraftKings. Currently, there are over 25 apps available in the state. Having said that, there are a couple of caveats. For instance, Colorado operators must partner with one of the state’s 33 casinos, and the state has banned college player props across all sports. But that’s about it – otherwise regular sports betting, pari-mutual wagering, and daily fantasy sports betting are all legal!

Connecticut

In May 2021, a deal was finally struck between the Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot tribes, allowing for both of them, alongside the state lottery, to run online sports betting with selected partners. Again, DraftKings and FanDuel stepped up to the plate, adding Connecticut to their gambling by state resume on October 12th of that year.

PlaySugarHouse is also available via the Connecticut Lottery. Because Connecticut is a smaller state and only has a select few (admittedly excellent) operators, and are somewhat limited in growth due to the deals with tribes in the state, they are small compared to nearby states like New York. But they are still capable of already offering an excellent online sports betting experience in the US. The passing of HB 6451 in 2021 allows for betting on almost all sports, except for in-state college sports, unless they are playing in a tournament.

We expect, considering the strength of the agreement between the state and the tribes, for the limited but high-quality selection in Connecticut to remain the same for quite some time. A change only looks possible in 2023, when the current licenses run out.

Illinois

When we look at all the options when gambling by state, Illinois ranks up there with the very best, thanks to a broad selection of world-class sportsbooks including the likes of Caesars. In-person betting was actually available in the state back in March 2020, swiftly followed by online betting in June 2020 thanks to the Illinois Sports Wagering Act.

The only key restrictions we’re aware of include no betting on elections, award ceremonies, and in-state college games (though the latter can be wagered on pregame and in-person). A more impactful restriction was that gambling in the state at this time required in-person registration.

With such a thing being made nearly impossible by the coronavirus pandemic, this essentially left Illinois’ sports betting dreams parked like a luxury sports car without any gas. It looks great but practically motionless. This all changed when the in-person registration rule was lifted on March 5th 2022 via bill HB 3136, which opened the floodgates. Things have only gone from strength to strength since then, breaking the billion-dollar sports betting handle barrier in January 2023.

Indiana

One of the biggest and most successful of any state to make sports betting legal is Indiana, boasting over a dozen sportsbooks and the fifth state to top $5 billion in handle as early as October 2021. Indiana became the ninth legal betting state in the USA on May 8th 2019, following the signing of HB 1015, pretty much exactly a year from the overturning of PASPA.

Part of the reason for the swiftness of the legalization process in Indiana is that there were relevant laws based on their legal retail casinos which provided a framework for HB 1015. The restrictions relevant to the reader include a ban on prop bets on college sports, amateur sports, and esports. Only the latter stands out as unusual.

Otherwise, we’d say that gambling by state Indiana is a great experience, whether you’re a fan of traditional or fantasy betting. While rules based around current tribal restrictions can often be restrictive, and it is true that operators must partner with current land-based casinos, up to three skins or mobile platforms provides plenty of choice.

Iowa

If you are lucky enough to live within the state line of Iowa, you can enjoy as many as 17 mobile apps including major names like BetRivers, Betway and BetMGM as just a few examples. And that number is growing.

19 casinos so far have made a home in this state, and they can have up to three online partners. This, alongside cheap licenses, means that the variety of choice in Iowa could easily dwarf that in other states.

Gov. Kim Richards signing SF 617 into law on May 13th, with the online launch unusually coming at the same time as retail in August 2019. Much like Illinois, Iowa began with an in-person registration rule made impractical by the coronavirus, which was overturned at the beginning of 2021.

There are also a few rules which make this state a little unique. You may bet on college sports but must not wager on high school, entertainment, or special events. Also, you don’t actually need to be a resident of Iowa in order to gamble here, as long as you are within state lines when placing a bet.

Finally, Iowa strictly prohibits anyone with a close affiliation with leagues or teams from wagering on that sport. However, this is not so much of a concern due to the state not having a major sports team. This is all overseen by the regulatory body Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission.

Kansas

Kansas became a legal sports betting state in 2022, following a year of debate where HB2370 turned into SB 84 and was finally signed into law by Governor Lauren Kelly. This allowed both retail and online betting to get started on September 1st of that year.

This astonishingly fast legislative turnaround showcases the enthusiasm for making sports betting legal in Kansas. It was great timing too, considering that this was achieved just before the 2022 NFL season. In an even more fortunate turn of events, the Kansas City Chiefs went on to win the Super Bowl, leading to football fans in the state to place close to $25 million in Super Bowl bets that fateful Sunday.

This is thanks to several great operators licensed by the Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission already among their ranks, including FanDuel and DraftKings. The future looks bright, with Kansan law currently overseeing up to 12 online sportsbooks, and native tribes also having the option to offer online gambling if they wish to partner up.

Louisiana

Residents in Louisiana potentially have over 40 apps to choose from, with licenses being made available from the Louisiana Gaming Control Board to 20 locations. All this was made possible following a trio of bills signed by Gov. John Bel Edwards in June 2021.

Online sports betting in Louisiana become available in January 2022. However, this is only the case for 55 out of 64 parishes who voted to legalize sports betting. Beyond gambling by state, Louisiana law left it up to individual parishes, meaning you actually have to be within the right part of the Pelican State to make a bet, with geolocation software used to verify these facts.

Having said all this, those who are lucky enough to live in legal parishes are in for a treat, with many of the greatest names in the industry, from BetRivers to Caesars, making a net here. All major sports are included, as well as college and fantasy sports, making for quite a liberal environment in comparison to other legal betting states in the US.

Maryland

In the 2020 election, 67.1% of the Maryland population voted to allow sports betting3. In the longest ever period between the voting to allow gambling by state and launch, bookmakers finally launched on November 23rd 2022. Even this wasn’t without hiccups either, as they migrated online on Monday, went offline Tuesday, and then were officially released Wednesday morning.

Good things come to those who wait, however, as Maryland has the capacity to allow for a whopping 60 online sportsbook and seven launched on day one. So, we’ve no doubt that those slots will all soon get filled, with the likes of Betfred and BetMGM having already joined them.

Plus, the sports selection is broad too, as the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency only places prohibitions on high school sports and certain other non-sporting events. Everything else is market-ready.

Massachusetts

On the morning of March 10th 2023, Massachusetts residents woke up to find some of the world’s greatest fantasy and traditional sports betting sites already available, including the mighty FanDuel and DraftKings. This came about following a compromise on H5164, known as the Massachusetts Sports Wagering Act.

While there was much back-and-forth before eventual legalization, this wasn’t much of a surprise considering that State Senator Eileen Donoghue actually pre-empted the Supreme Court overturning of PASPA with the first sports betting bill in Massachusetts being introduced in January 2018.

Although three years went by between these, the bill was passed by a huge 156-3-1 margin in July 2021. Important caveats here include a ban on in-state college teams, except when they are playing in tournaments with more than four teams, and a ban on credit cards being used for deposit. That said, the law allows for the potential of 15 online sports betting licenses from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission.

Michigan

The first official go-ahead for betting in Michigan was with the launch of the MGM Grand Detroit on March 11th 2020.

And things come a long way since then, with 15 licenses available from the Michigan Gaming Control Board. They are also one of the top 10 gaming by state in terms of monthly betting handle. This success is unsurprising, given Michigan's population of over 7 million adults aged 21 and above, their passion for sports, and the presence of renowned teams like the Detroit Lions and Detroit Pistons.

The journey towards legalizing sports betting in Michigan was lengthy, however, starting in 2015 and culminating in the signing of the Lawful Sports Betting Act by Governor Gretchen in 2019. The Great Lakes State officially joined the online sports betting community on January 22, 2021, with few restrictions on betting options, except for high school and entertainment events (excluding the Oscars).

Mississippi

Despite being one of the earlier states to adopt legal sports betting, and having a whopping 28 casinos and sportsbooks, Mississippi hasn’t seen much movement since its launch on August 1st launch following the passage of HB 967.

There are two casinos, BetMGM and Pearl River Resort, with apps that you must be physically within the casinos to use. With no movement since then, it looks likely to stay that way. Nonetheless, technically, sports betting is possible.

Montana

Although it is technically legal to bet on sports online in Montana, there is only a single option here, owing to the sports betting market being run by the state lottery as was laid out in the Montana Code and bill HB 725.

This essentially made sports betting legal but only as a government-run enterprise in the lowly rated, rather unimaginatively titled Sports Bet Montana. To use the latter, you also have to register at one of the state’s physical casinos, and there is a strict limit of $1000 for a single bet. Furthermore, Montana is one of the few states that specifically ban fantasy betting.

Nevada

It’s strange that Nevada, considering that they have long been the standard bearer for what can be expected from in-person betting, is in such an awkward position when it comes to online mobile betting.

Basically, bettors in Nevada have to physically go to a casino and register in person before they can bet online. To be clear, you have to download the relevant app, visit an actual casino owned by the app’s partners, complete your application, and then make your first deposit in-person (a minimum of $100) and in cash.

It is stranger still when you consider that Nevada was ahead of the curve when it came to online gambling by state, being the first of all online legal betting states back in 2010. That’s right – this came eight years before PASPA was overturned, thanks to the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992.

The law is vague, however, prohibiting amateur non-college sports, including high school and some Olympic sports. Entertainment betting and daily fantasy sports are also banned. That said, despite the confusing legislation, there are approved traditional sportsbooks regulated by the Nevada Gaming Control Board, making it worth the effort.

New Hampshire

New Hampshire legalized sports betting in 2019 with bill HB 480, which was then further refined by bills HB 330 and HB 354 in 2021. Unlike other states with multiple options, New Hampshire has only one sportsbook: DraftKings. The latter stands out as a top candidate because they agreed to provide 51% of revenue to the state.

Beyond the singular option, things are pretty easy for betting online in New Hampshire, which requires a minimum age of 18 in order to legally bet. However, betting on college games within the state, New Hampshire teams, and high school sports is prohibited. Hopefully, more options will emerge, with five licenses are available through the New Hampshire Gaming Regulator Oversight Authority.

New Jersey

All hail New Jersey, who deserve credit for challenging and overturning PASPA, leading to the legalization of sports betting across the USA. In fact, they were the third state to legalize sports betting in 2012, and in June 2018, they signed their sports betting bill into law after a decision made by the Supreme Court.

New Jersey now offers over 20 top-notch online betting options, including bet365, thanks to favorable laws and minimal restrictions. Prohibited bets include wagering on in-state college events, high school games, and events with athletes under 18. Overall, though, the so-called Garden State is considered a pioneer, even offering a wide range of traditional and fantasy sports options on top of everything else already mentioned.

New York

They may have been late to the party, but to the surprise of few, New York has surpassed the overwhelming majority of other online sports betting states since they launched on January 8th 2022. BetRivers, FanDuel, Caesars, and DraftKings all already call the Big Apple their home.

This came about after Governor Andrew Cuomo included a plan to allow for sports betting in the 2022 budget legislation. There’s little doubt that part of the incentive to make sports betting legal was due to the massive success of their neighbor New Jersey since legislation. In fact, it is estimated that the state may have lost as much as a billion dollars for not taking advantage of gambling by state legislation back in 2018.

Regardless, there’s plenty of great operators already licensed with the New York State Gaming Commission and only basic prohibitions, such as bets on high school and youth sports, entertainment events, and elections.

Ohio

We at TPP expect Ohio, one of the newest legal betting states, to become highly popular for online sports betting due to its immensely passionate sports culture. Things officially launched on January 1st, 2023, with notable operators like Betfred and bet365 already available.

The sports betting law HB 29, signed by Governor Mike DeWine in December 2021, followed a lengthy process since 2019, involving bill S 1111, bill SB 176, and subsequent amendments.

With 25 available positions, Ohio presents significant opportunities for gambling. The absence of restrictive taxes or laws, along with legal daily fantasy sports since 2018 and a low $10,000 maximum annual licensing fee, make the Buckeye State an attractive destination for fantasy betting.

Moreover, betting on college sports is permitted, reflecting the aforementioned rich college sporting culture in Ohio. However, there are restrictions on politics and entertainment/award ceremonies.

To get started, look for the Ohio Casino Control Commission for the appropriate license, and you are good to go!

Oregon

Oregon, like New Hampshire, has only one online sportsbook available: DraftKings. Despite being a legal betting state since August 2019, the options here are limited to this single provider.

Initially, sports betting was restricted to tribal casinos and the state lottery's Scoreboard app. However, with the passage of bill HB 2127, DraftKings became the sole sports betting app in Oregon starting January 2022.

While the state has a high interest in sports and sports betting, the lack of options is frustrating, especially considering the record-breaking $62.3 million sports betting handle in January 2023. Bettors residing in the Beaver State can sign up for DraftKings, though bear in mind that college sports and fantasy betting are both against the law.

Pennsylvania

While perhaps not as synonymous with gambling as some other states, there’s no doubt that Pennsylvania is one of the best online sports betting states available right now. They got off to a flying start, managing a 2019 online launch following the passing of bill HB 2171. Since then, they have consistently placed in the top five sports betting handles.

Surprisingly, they’ve managed this with an upper limit of 14 operator licenses and high taxes, issues which typically slow down the growth of legal betting states. From a consumer perspective, the enthusiasm here isn’t that much of a surprise. After all, those 14 licenses from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board do include the delights of BetMGM and FanDuel, to name just a few.

The accepted markets are broad, with high school, entertainment related and college prop bets being your standard restrictions. Bill HB 271 even included specific allowances for online poker, mini-casinos and tablet gaming, which is far more advanced than many other gambling by state legislation. In fact, you don’t even need to be a Pennsylvania state resident to get in on the fun. You just need to be within the state lines.

Rhode Island

Joining the small selection of states which have legalized betting but only have a single provider is Rhode Island. And this time it is William Hill, recently purchased by Caesars, who have the monopoly here.

Rhode Island were actually one of the first online sports betting states, with Governor Gina Raimondo signing offering legislation S2045 a mere month after passing the repeal of PASPA. Revenues are small because, well, Rhode Island is small. And partially for that reason, there appears to be little in terms of a push for broader legalization.

That said, William Hill is a great operator, as is the platform they provide to Rhode Island residents online and through its perfectly serviceable app. However, the stale lack of advancement since its launch does provide evidence of the need for competition. Still, they are the only game in town, with standard rules, such as no betting on in-state school with the exception of tournaments.

Daily fantasy sports remain unavailable in legal terms, but this may change as it is subject to ongoing debate among The Rhode Island Lottery Group, which acts as the gaming commission for this state.

Tennessee

Tennessee is the only state that exclusively offers online sports betting, as they lack physical casinos. Representative Rich Staples introduced bill HB 0001 in 2019, with online sportsbooks becoming available in November 2020. Despite the state's conservative nature, Tennessee has a history of passing open gaming laws, such as the Fantasy Sports Act of 2016.

However, some of the tentative governmental sentiments towards online gambling can be seen via the 10% hold that the Tennessee Sports Wagering Advisory Council demands operators hold. A typical hold can be half that, and this does sometimes mean worse odds for Tennessee residents than other states, as betting sites push to make the percentage4.

Nevertheless, operators like DraftKings and BetMGM strive to offer the best odds possible. The only other real notable restrictions are a ban on betting on in-state schools, along with live prop bets during college games and on individual college athletes.

Virginia

Now boasting over a dozen great online sportsbooks, including the mighty bet365, with more set to come, Virginia has come a long way since those first legal bets were made in January 2021. This road began with legislative discussions in 2019. The result of this was a study which showed that sports betting had the potential to drive up to $400 million in revenue for the state.

And so it went to the voters of Bristol, Danville, Portsmouth, and Norfolk, who helped pass SB 384 and HB 896 in March 2020. Physical casinos were also voted through at this point. All this marks an astonishingly fast turnaround the last few years, especially for a state which historically offered no legitimate gambling options.

Via this legislation, the Virginia Lottery is able to provide up to 12 online licenses. Fantasy, professional, and college sports betting are legal, with the exception of in-state teams. Alongside Tennessee, the so-nicknamed Old Dominion is one of the few jurisdictions where sports betting in the USA launched solely online.

Washington D.C

Washington D.C. has a limited online sports betting market, with the sole operator, GamBetDC, run by the state lottery. This, unfortunately, offers less favorable odds compared to other states.

The only other options – Caesars and BetMGM – require you to be within a short radius from their retail locations in order to place any bets.

Since the legalization of sports betting in March 2020, there has been little progress with the passing of bill HB 2638. Having said that, if you do care to bet online in Washington with the limited options available, you can wager on almost any type of event, including college sports, esports and Olympic sports. In that way at least, they have proven themselves rather forward-thinking.

West Virginia

West Virginia prioritizes quality over quantity when it comes to sports betting online. Discussions began in 2017, with one of the earliest legal sports betting markets launched in December 2018 through the bill SB 415. Initially limited to five casinos, partnerships with BetRivers, DraftKings, and Caesars, along with the potential for three skins per casino, expanded the options.

The West Virginia Lottery oversees the industry, and licenses are valid for five years, allowing for potential changes in the future. So, the future landscape could potentially morph into something quite different.

However, with a small but quality selection of great operators, and no serious restrictions (the ban on esports was repealed with the passing of HB 4826 on April 2022) beyond the common ban on high school sports, there’s plenty of reason to be happy just as things are. You can even enjoy what West Virginia has to offer as a visitor, as you merely need to be within state lines to remain in the reassuring arms of legality.

Wyoming

Our final entirely legal state was also the last to allow online betting before any retail sportsbooks were available. Wyoming launched sports betting online in September 2021, with the first bets being placed on DraftKings and BetMGM. This followed Governor Mark Gordon signing bill HB 133 into law, thereby approving a surprisingly unrestrictive set of rules.

The minimum age to bet in Wyoming is 18, with gambling extended also to non-residents. You merely need to be in the state in order to place any wagers legally. Fantasy and college bets are also included.

FanDuel States Map Screenshot
FanDuel Map Homepage (Source: FanDuel)

The process of legalizing sports betting in each US state is unpredictable and challenging. While we cannot guarantee anything, the information we've compiled below indicates that things are about to change, and for the better too.

Maine

This one should be pretty straightforward considering that right now, online sports betting is legal in Maine. This came about following the signing off of bill LD 585 by Governor Janet Mills in May 2022, with the law becoming active a few months later in August 2022.5

However, they are taking their time getting all the details finished up, with the licensing and regulatory body Maine Gambling Control Unit suggesting that things should be ready by January 2024. This will allow for four online sportsbooks. And while there are many possibilities, the usual suspects such as those found on our top bookmakers list continue to be the most likely.

The law restricts betting on Maine college teams, although it is possible to bet on tournaments which include Maine teams so long as the individual game itself does not include a Maine school. Daily fantasy betting has been legal since 2017 with the passing of LD 1320. Because of this earlier date, you can actually enjoy this form of betting right now, without any additional wait.

Nebraska

If anything, the situation in Nebraska is even more frustrating because there’s no clear suggestion of when sports betting will resolve, despite the signing of bill LB 561 back in October 21st 2022. Even the Nebraska Racing and Gaming Commission Executive Director Tom Sage stated that sports betting became legal when the State Office published a set of approved rules and the Nebraska Racing and Gaming Commission voted to approve them.

Any exact dates are anybody’s guess. Rules are pretty standard, including no high school sports or in-state college sports, while daily fantasy is somewhat of a legal grey area (though some operators like FanDuel do operate there). Esports, simulated games, sports drafts, general college sports, international and professional games, and sports awards would also all be legal under the approved laws.

Image of gavel
Picture Of Gavel (Source: Pixabay | © Arek Socha)

For the states we have listed below, there is no official confirmation of sports betting legalization; however, there is hope that things will take a promising turn in the near future.

Alabama

Although the signs may initially look bleak for Alabama, considering that they don’t even have a legal lottery at the time of writing, there have at least been multiple attempts at legalization in 2019, 2021, 2022, and 2023 to give some semblance of hope. Plus, there are reports that legal sports betting in principle does have the backing of Governor Key Ivey. That said, none have come close to passing thus far.

In the meantime, both fantasy betting and horse racing are legal.

California

Following the failure of both proposition 26 and 27 at the ballet boxes in November 2022, it looks unlikely that legal sports gambling will come up again until 2024. However, due to government stakeholders and Native American tribe lobbying groups, even that date for legalization looks unlikely.

Because a constitutional amendment would very probably be needed, a successful trip to the polls would likely be required. Still, efforts are continuing, and it’s certainly possible in 2024/25.

Florida

For a fleeting moment, Florida saw Bill 2-A ratifying the tribal compact in the state, with Hard Rock Sportsbook accepting their first bet in December 2021. This lasted for about a month, though, since courts ruled that Florida sports betting violated the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and decided to vacate the 2021 gambling compact.

At the time of writing, things are going through an appeals process, so upcoming elections could have a big impact on whether or not we’ll find sports betting legal in Florida in the near future.

Georgia

Similar to California, Georgia suffered two recent failed attempt to push forward positive gambling legislation. Both sports betting bills SB 57 and HB 380, alongside the amendment SR 140, all failed in 2023.

However, there are positive signs. Sports betting bills have passed through Georgia Legislature as recently as 2021, for instance. Even more pressingly, the Georgia Senate Economic Development and Tourism Committee inserted sports betting language into an unrelated bill, and it was advanced. This has created a new bill HB 237, which does not require a constitutional amendment, and could be passed this year.6

Hawaii

It’s fair to say that Hawaii has one of the longest paths towards legalizing sports betting in the USA, but it would be possible in 2024/25. Part of the reason for the wait is that they are completely without any kind of big gambling entity, and are one of two states with no gambling at all. So, they’re pretty much starting from scratch. Several bills were put forth in 2022 without any success, and this continued into early 2023.

Kentucky

In 2022, Kentucky saw the legislative process became unglued due to a disagreement on racetracks, which would yield over online markets. However, another bill – HB 106 – has been introduced, which could see gambling in the state become a reality in 2023. Having said that, 2024 is more likely, with regulatory frameworks needing to be settled.

Of course, this is only true if the bill passes the senate. Considering that studies suggest that Kentucky residents support legalized sports betting by a two to one margin, many will be hoping it will. What's more, both sports and daily fantasy sports betting would also be legal.

Minnesota

Another close call came from Minnesota in 2022, with Representative Zach Stephenson gaining tribal support for a bill. HF 778 came close to passing that year and would have seen the issuing of 11 mobile sports operator licenses. We expect similar legislation to be put forward in 2023.

It would be entirely possible to see sports betting legal in Minnesota by the end of the year. After all, horse racing is already allowed in the state and is regulated by the Minnesota Racing Commission. And, although daily fantasy sports sit in an unregulated environment, they are nonetheless broadly accessible without consequence to operators such as DraftKings and FanDuel.

Missouri

2023 is looking like a potentially huge year, as we could certainly see Missouri pass a sports betting bill that would provide up to 39 sportsbooks. Although it came close to being authorized, the bill ultimately collapsed in the senate, coming as a legitimate surprise, with most expecting it to pass.

Nonetheless, two new house bills, HB581 and HB556, are looking to pick up where previous legislative efforts failed.

North Carolina

Residents of North Carolina have to travel to one of two tribal casinos to enjoy legal sports betting, with both venues quite far off from the major cities, making this a huge inconvenience.

However, things are looking pretty positive, as Bill HB374 has made its way through three house committees. That said, previous similar hopes have been dashed, such as SB 688 which fell at the House of Representatives. But it’s entirely possible that things could turn around, especially since daily fantasy sports via DraftKings and FanDuel are legal already.

Oklahoma

The chances of Oklahoma becoming a legal betting state for sports gambling does look relatively slim, despite multiple efforts. For instance, Representative Ren Luttrell introduced bill HB 1027 which would allow tribes to partner and open online operators. However, the huge gap between the politicians and the tribe may be too large to see Oklahoma join online sports betting states anytime soon. Early 2024 is possible, but unlikely. But, where there is a will, there is a way.

South Carolina

Of the many attempts to get sports betting legal in South Carolina, bill HB 5277 came the closest, enjoying bipartisan support. The fact that this fell apart so quickly means that many consider this to be a done and dusted issue for the time being. However, we’ve seen unlikely candidates succeed before, and even though legislation of the state’s bills may be a poor indicator, it does show a desire to get the job done. We expect further efforts in 2023.

Texas

The idea that Texas would legalize sports betting seemed completely impossible in the past. However, things have been slowly moving in that direction, with bills in February 2023 flirting with the idea of moving past a lengthy history opposing sports gambling. That said, Republican governor Dan Patrick is publicly against sports betting, presenting a huge hurdle. We'll just have to wait and see how things pan out.

Vermont

The only forms of online gambling currently legal in Vermont are horse racing through FanDuel and TwinSpires, and daily fantasy sports which were passed in 2017. That said, steps have been taken in 2021 and 2023 to move closer to making sports betting legal.

Bill H 127, put forth by Representative Matthew Birong, would allow for up to six sports betting apps. A major change from the previous bill is that this increases the legal age of betting from 18 to 21. This fact helped gambling legislation in that state to clear for the first time, and it will not be read in the senate.

However, there’s no guarantee it will pass in the senate, and there are doubts that should such a law be passed, online wagering would not be included. So, while we could see sports betting become legal, there would still be a way to go. However, there’s still hope, with the current bill still under consideration.

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DraftKings error page (Source: DraftKings)

Certain states in the USA allow physical betting, but not via the internet. Even so, these states are closer to legalizing online sports betting at the time of writing, providing indicators for potential future developments. This is because the way in which the in-person legalities are laid out often gives us a handy indicator of what things would look like should sports betting be legalized online.

Delaware

Legally speaking, online sports betting is legal in Delaware. The groundwork was actually laid with bill HB 100 which made sports betting generally available in the state back in 2009. It was agreed following the overturning of PASPA that it was not necessary for any new legislation to make online sports betting legal.

However, terms have not been agreed with the three major retailers, so the Delaware Lottery has still not launched online. Right now, there’s little expected timeline for them to do so either.

New Mexico

The situation in New Mexico is both simple and disappointingly unwavering. There are five tribal locations who own the state sportsbook, and they are pretty much happy to keep things as they are. There was an attempt with bill HB 101 to make sports betting legal in 2021, but that failed to gain any sort of headway, and there’s been nothing to speak of since.

Basically, for most of your sports betting needs, New Mexico has five retail options for you and little online. We say little because online horse betting is available – just so long as the race doesn’t take place in that state. Daily fantasy sports are also available, and both these options are offered by FanDuel.

North Dakota

You can currently bet on sports via three tribes in North Dakota, with the first bet being taken in December 2021. However, that same year, lawmakers in the state rejected legislation which would have provided a ballot option in December 2022. This means that there can be no vote until 2025 at the earliest.

In other words, although you can enjoy sports gambling in the state of North Dakota in some casinos, they are quite far away from joining other online sports betting states. Daily fantasy betting exists in a legal grey area, but is nonetheless offered.

South Dakota

Sports betting is legal in South Dakota, specifically at a Deadwood casino following the amendment to the South Dakota Constitution under bill SJR 501 in 2020. The strict city limits actually make this more restrictive than other states with solely retail options.

There are further restrictions on high school, in-state college, and prop bets on college athletes. In 2022, a ballet proposal to allow mobile sports betting was voted down by a house committee, and there has been little legislative noise since.

Washington

With the passing of bill HB 2638 and the signature of Governor Jay Inslee in March 2020, sports betting officially became legal. However, it specifically provided Native American tribes with the option of offering sports betting on reservation lands. There’s now over a dozen retail casinos which provide exactly this, with the approval of the Washington State Gambling Commission.

This includes sports betting in all forms, including college and esports, meaning online sportsbooks are technically allowed in-person, although most are set up for a standard retail offering. There have been no significant advancements in the law since then.

Furthermore, they are one of the few states to explicitly outlaw daily fantasy sports, with the state viewing them as a games of chance. This even extends to office and March Madness pools, making them among the strictest in the nation when it comes to certain forms of betting.7

Wisconsin

In a somewhat strange situation, Wisconsin lacks specific laws that legalize online sports betting. Nonetheless, the Oneida Indian Nation operates casinos in Green Bay and plans to open another in Milwaukee, as recognized tribes can modify state compacts.

In a nutshell, gambling in Wisconsin is only legal within tribal jurisdiction. Availability beyond this is highly improbable, as the Oneida Indian Nation, currently regulating it, has shown minimal interest in expanding the scope.

There are a couple of states which have had no movement whatsoever, and we’ve no evidence to suggest will legalize online sports betting states any time soon. These are:

  • Utah: Not only is there no online sports betting in Utah, but it’s also the only state without any form of legal gambling at all. So right now, the chances aren’t looking good.
  • Idaho: A little more advanced than Utah, Idaho at least allows for horse racing. But that’s about it. The state laws are very anti-gambling in all its forms, and even fantasy gambling is entirely banned.
  • Alaska: If there’s one state that’s never going to legalize gambling, it’s a toss up between Utah and Alaska. There’s just no political movement or appetite to legalize sports betting here, at all.
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We go into much further detail in the above article, but here is a summary for which states can you legally bet in.

StatusStatesTotal
Legal in person and onlineAZ, AR, CO, CT, IL, IN, IA, LA, MD, MI, MT, NV, NH, NJ, NY, OR, PA, RI, VA, WV.
+ Washington DC
21
Legal online onlyTN, WY2
Legal in person onlyDE, MS, NM, NC, ND, SD, WA, WI.8
In the process of legalization FL, ME, NE, OH.4
Illegal AL, AK, CA, CZ, DC, GA, GU, HI, ID, KS, KY, MA, MN, MS, OK, PR, SC, TX, UT, VT, VI, 21

While it may be disappointing if your state has not yet legalized sports betting online, the good news is that things are progressing all the time. There might be the odd setback, but there’s no doubt that the overall trajectory is a positive one.

Just think – within the space of a few years, we’ve gone from a federal ban to millions of American having access to some of the best sportsbooks in the world. And things are just getting started, so be sure to stick with us for all the latest legal information and the best bookmaker recommendations!

1 Perez, A.J. (n.d.). What it means: Supreme Court strikes down PASPA law that limited sports betting. [online] USA TODAY. Available at: https://eu.usatoday.com/story/sports/2018/05/14/supreme-court-sports-betting-paspa-law-new-jersey/440710002/ [Accessed 6 Apr. 2023].

2 fantasy sports betting; event wagering. State of Arizona House of Representatives Fifty-fifth Legislature First Regular Session 2021 HB 2772 AN ACT AMENDING SECTION 5-554, ARIZONA REVISED STATUTES; AMENDING TITLE 5, CHAPTER 6, ARTICLE 1, ARIZONA REVISED STATUTES, BY ADDING SECTION 5-605; AMENDING TITLE 5, ARIZONA REVISED STATUTES, BY ADDING CHAPTERS 10 AND 11; AMENDING SEC-TIONS 13-3301 AND 13-3305, ARIZONA REVISED STATUTES; RELATING TO AMUSEMENTS AND SPORTS. (TEXT OF BILL BEGINS ON NEXT PAGE). (n.d.). Available at: https://www.azleg.gov/legtext/55leg/1R/bills/HB2772P.pdf.Chicago Tribune

3 Maryland Question 2 Election Results: Allow Sports Betting. (2020). The New York Times. [online] 3 Nov. Available at: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/11/03/us/elections/results-maryland-question-2-allow-sports-betting.html [Accessed 6 Apr. 2023].

4 Play Tenn. (n.d.). Analysis of Tennessee’s 10% Sports Betting Hold Requirement. [online] Available at: https://www.playtenn.com/sports-betting/hold-requirement [Accessed 6 Apr. 2023].Virginia.gov

5 Maine Public. (2022). Bill allowing tribes to offer online sports betting becomes law. [online] Available at: https://www.mainepublic.org/politics/2022-05-02/bill-allowing-tribes-to-offer-online-sports-betting-becomes-law [Accessed 6 Apr. 2023].

6 AP NEWS. (2023). Georgia sports betting plan brought back to life in Senate. [online] Available at: https://apnews.com/article/georgia-sports-betting-gambling-8026e0537e906919ae77582a4df848c2.

7 S.T. (2009). State: Office betting pools for NCAA basketball tournament illegal. [online] The Seattle Times. Available at: https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/state-office-betting-pools-for-ncaa-basketball-tournament-illegal [Accessed 6 Apr. 2023].

WRITTEN BY Ben Gibson
View all posts by Ben Gibson

Ben has been writing professionally for over a decade. His articles are a great outlet for his inexhaustible supply of sporting facts and enthusiasm. He resides in Yorkshire, where his work is powered by the ever-present sound of a kettle.

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