State by State Guide
Is Sports Betting Legal in the US? We have the full details in our updated State by State guide. Find legal and safe online betting sites in your state along with the with best Sportsbook promo codes that give new users free money up to $1,000.
Pennsylvania Betting is Live!
Pennsylvania sports betting is legal and live! See full details on the top PA online sportsbooks. Claim our #1 bonus offer with the FanDuel Sportsbook Promo Codes. Lineups has exclusive sign up bonus offers for free bets.
We are serious about verifying online betting sites we promote. We perform a 3-Point Check to verify sites are Legal, Licensed and Safe. When you see this image on a sportsbook review page, you know it’s Safe and Legal to play on the site.
Sports betting is conducted at a Sportsbook and the online version looks very similar to a land based Sportsbook. The primary difference is one of convenience and fun. With online sports betting, you can bet in a matter of minutes from anywhere and don’t have to sit in a cloud of smoke to redeem your winning ticket. Sports betting legislation is being introduced on a state by state basis. So, be sure to check the status of your state and only play on the books that have been 3-Point Check Verified by our Editor.
At this point, the states in which daily fantasy sports is legal far outnumbers the states in which there are no laws. However, one of the largest states still fighting the pointless fight is Texas. In our opinion, DFS is set to morph into quasi-sports betting and as long as the traditional formats are maintained, that’s fine by us. DFS is one of the greatest games ever invented and can be played for free or money. Why any state would want to stop tax revenue and block residents is beyond us. As it is, we must cover the state by state legislation and legality. See our Is DraftKings Legal? and Is FanDuel Legal? pages for full legal breakdown to see if you can play in your state.
Our goal is to become a leading voice and betting news provider in the space. Particularly, we are interested in online forms of betting. We also cover eSports news. We’re compiling an authoritative group of writers that are passionate about the space. Learn more about our writing team and our mission. We specialize in editorials on the daily news that impacts state legislation, sports leagues, bettors and fans alike.
Lineups has an affiliate relationship with the top Sportsbooks and Casinos online. We vet their online offerings thoroughly and have done the due diligence for you. Read our detailed reviews.
The future of lotteries nationwide is likely to vastly change in the next 5 years. While only a handful of states are offering online lotteries, they have been considered successful. Michigan has led the way with an organized and technically sound approach. The structure is there and the games are fun. The Michigan Lottery promo code is a necessity when signing up and Lineups Betting has you covered.
Instant Games pose an interesting angle and we could see the future determined by a lawsuit in Pennsylvania. After seeing the outstanding result for Michigan Lottery, the Pennsylvania Lottery released a PA iLottery bonus code to entice new users to join. States are increasingly looking at online lotteries as another source of revenue. We expect this to spread to more than the handful of current states with online lotteries.
Latest Betting News
New Jersey Online Betting is Legal and Live!
New Jersey led the charge for legalzing betting on a national level and after the victory, gaming companies did not waste any time. DraftKings launched a mobile app and desktop site named: DK Sportsbook. There is a new user promo offer that you can get by clicking on our links. Read our review and don’t sign up without getting our free bet offer. We provide free Live DraftKings Sportsbook odds for the major sports. Wherever DraftKings is, you know FanDuel isn’t far behind. FanDuel Sportsbook launched shortly there after and will soon and we have the top promo code for FanDuel Sportsbook, plus a complete review of the technology and product.
Online betting refers to any or all of the following gambling: Sports (including Horse Racing), Casino (Slots, Blackjack, Craps, Roulette, etc), Poker, Daily Fantasy Sports and Lottery (Lotto, Instant Games).
What’s the next best thing to traveling to Vegas and putting $100 down on blackjack? Doing it without the $2,000 in expenses from your couch. Online casino gaming in the US is going to have a serious paradigm shift in the next 10 years. Vegas will still be Vegas and we think online gaming will only help the land based casinos grow in patronage. Online casino covers the classics like blackjack, slots, bingo, craps, roulette as well as a slew of modern games.
Unfortunately, for US Poker fans, the wait for the return of online poker nationwide hasn’t materialized yet. However, WSOP.com is live in a number of states. WSOP is a trusted and know entity, which makes the painful memory of Black Friday a bit more unlikely to repeat. If there ever was a game of skill, it’s Poker and applying the DFS legality argument, perhaps Poker should be as widely available as DFS. As it is, we’re tracking the legality of Poker in each state, so stay tuned and get ready to start going all in.
- 1 State by State Guide
- 2 Pennsylvania Betting is Live!
- 3 Editor Verified
- 4 Online Sports Betting
- 5 Daily Fantasy Sports
- 6 Betting News
- 7 Sportsbook Reviews
- 8 Sportsbook Promo Codes
- 9 Online Lottery
- 10 Latest Betting News
- 11 New Jersey Online Betting is Legal and Live!
- 12 Online Betting
- 13 Online Casino
- 14 Online Poker
- 15 A Look at the History of Betting in the U.S. and How it Impacts Americans Today
- 16 Gambling in the American Colonies
- 17 1800s: Gambling Moves West
- 18 Restrictions on Gambling in the East
- 19 Legalization of Gambling in Nevada
- 20 Federal Attempts to Restrict Gambling
- 21 Rebirth of State Lotteries and Atlantic City
- 22 Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and Expansion
- 23 PAPSA
- 24 The Internet and UIGEA
- 25 Murphy Legalizes Sports Betting
A Look at the History of Betting in the U.S. and How it Impacts Americans Today
For practically as long as there have been Americans, those Americans have been gambling in some form or another. Gambling was a part of Native American culture even before the settlers arrived in North America. Cultural traditions often times involved some sort of games of chance which were passed down through the generations. Native American culture even featured a sort of game that is similar to craps, and Native Americans also wagered on stickball.
Gambling in the American Colonies
The American colonies had attempted to make gambling illegal once settlers began to arrive. Settlers had brought over the English love of gambling on anything and everything. The Puritan influence over New England made a myriad of activities illegal, as perceived public morality prevailed over popular individual pastimes such as gambling. At the same time, gambling was seen as a problem in Colonial Virginia, and John Smith attempted to ban gambling.
Nevertheless, gambling took hold in the Southern colonies in the 1700s and grew exponentially. There was a variety of activities that saw wagers placed, including horse racing and cockfighting. Horse racing especially was a major pastime, and race days were major events for the gentry and aristocracy. It was in the south where horse racing earned its national reputation as the sport of kings.
State lotteries began in the colonies around the turn of the 18th century. Ironically, early settlements were funded with the proceeds of lotteries conducted in England. Like lotteries of today, colonies used proceeds of lotteries to fund public aims. For example, much of the growth of the City of Philadelphia was funded by lotteries. The city used lottery funds to pay for public works programs, including wharves, streets and buildings. Like today, where education in funded by lotteries, many institutions of higher learning were funded through the proceeds of lotteries. For example, Princeton, Harvard and Yale were all built or developed in part through the receipt of lottery funds.
The prevalence of gambling in American was not to last. England passed The Gaming Act of 1710 to prevent excessive gambling, and the authorities soon attempted to apply the law to the colonies, which caused tensions with their subjects in North America. Additionally, states began to limit gambling in order to rein in its prevalence and popularity. Further, social opposition to gambling spurred changes in laws that restricted gambling in many places. State lotteries began to disappear, and gambling was driven underground in many places in the United States.
1800s: Gambling Moves West
In the 1800s, gambling became associated with the Wild West and riverboats. As gambling was restricted in both the Northeast and the South, newer territories opened their doors to gambling. New Orleans became a mecca for gambling, and there were more gambling establishments in the city than there were in several Northeastern cities combined. Even when gambling was outlawed in Louisiana in general, gambling in New Orleans was excepted from this ban. As an aside, at the same time that gambling was being outlawed throughout the country, a casino opened in Washington, D.C. in 1832 that catered to politicians.
Riverboat gambling started as friendly games among passengers on the burgeoning industry of transporting goods and passengers up the Mississippi River. Soon, passengers began to ride riverboats solely for the purpose of gambling. Card games flourished in this medium. By the time of the Civil War, riverboats were at the height of their popularity.
Gambling achieved mythical status as it spread in the Wild West. Those found in the Wild West in general were more willing to take chances, hence their move to the frontier and away from the cities. This manifested itself through gambling. The image of the card dealing, drink swilling Wild West outlaw captivated the country and it helped drive social mores in the Western territories. Gambling soon became an integral part of the culture of the Western frontier. What soon became the American version of poker began to take hold in the Wild West.
The Gold Rush sparked a large influx of people to California as a wave of prospectors sought their fortune chasing riches buried in the ground. Gambling soon became a favorite pastime of the prospectors. A large casino in San Francisco became the center of activity in the city. As the Gold Rush spread to Nevada, so did gambling. In response, the Nevada Legislature outlawed gambling in 1861 before legalizing it in 1869.
Meanwhile, new forms of gambling began to take hold. A beloved game played by Native Americans, roulette, was discovered and became popular. Additionally, around the time of the Civil War, bets began to be placed on baseball games. Later in the nineteenth century, slot machines were invented. Finally, later in the century, craps began to be developed before blackjack was introduced early in the twentieth century.
Restrictions on Gambling in the East
At the same time that gambling was spreading out west, it was being restricted in the east. After a series of scandals, many public lotteries began to be outlawed.
Gambling was being driven underground by being publicly restricted. Even pari mutual horse racing, a popular form of gambling, was curtailed to the point that only two states had legal horse wagering in the early part of the twentieth century. The restrictions on legalized gambling soon made gambling fall within the purview of organized crime. Another form of gambling that occurred largely in the shadows was the riverboat that traveled outside of territorial waters to avoid the application of gambling laws.
The early part of the twentieth century saw a resurgence of Puritan-type sentiment that elevated public morality over individual vice. The Black Sox Scandal of 1919, in which gamblers attempted to fix the World Series, resulted in a large backlash and turned public opinion against gambling. Alcohol was outlawed through probation and gambling was restricted as well. Like drinking, which was rampart behind closed doors, so was gambling. Illegal casinos and speakeasies went hand in hand in the early part of the century. The new forms of gambling mentioned above made it all the more popular.
Legalization of Gambling in Nevada
In 1931, a momentous event in American gambling history occurred. After many vacillations, the Nevada Legislature finally made gambling legal in the state for good. Shortly after legalization, casinos began to spring up across the state. In 1935, Harold’s Club became the first major casino in Nevada, and it was followed by several other casinos. Although gambling in other parts of the country was prevalent at church events, many of the developments with regard to gambling occurred in Nevada.
Back east, the Mafia and other forms of organized crime still controlled gambling. At the same time, the Mafia moved into Las Vegas in the form of Bugsy Siegel. Business was already booming at the casinos in Nevada at the time that Siegel opened his casino. Soon, casinos began to offer other forms of entertainment to draw in gambling customers.
Federal Attempts to Restrict Gambling
Still, the federal government attempted to curtail gambling outside of the state of Nevada. The Interstate Wire Act of 1961 targeted the operation of betting businesses, specifically in the area of sports. The Wire Act made it illegal to use wire communications to transmit bets or wagering information in connection with wagering on sporting events or any other contest.
Rebirth of State Lotteries and Atlantic City
As Las Vegas flourished as one of the only means of legalized gambling, state lotteries soon began once again to operate. New Hampshire became the first state to legalize its lottery in 1964, and it was soon followed by many other states. After New Hampshire reaped large financial rewards from its lottery, twelve other states, mostly in the Northeast, soon had lotteries of their own. New York became the largest of these states in 1975 when it authorized its state lottery. Additionally, other forms of wagering soon commenced. Included among these was New York’s legalization of Off-Track Betting, meaning that gamblers no longer had to wager at a physical racetrack.
While Nevada had a monopoly over legalized betting, that hegemony was ended in 1976. In a statewide referendum, New Jersey voters approved legalized gambling. This approval was limited to only Atlantic City. Soon, the resort city had a burgeoning casino industry with major national chains opening locations there. The casinos were hugely profitable, and there were large monetary benefits for the state of New Jersey.
Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and Expansion
Gambling achieved another large stimulus in 1988 with the passage of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. This was the first piece of federal legislation that addressed legalized gaming as the statutes previously restricted gaming’s legality. The law authorized the establishment of the National Indian Gaming Commission. Native American tribes had begun operating bingo parlors and other gaming halls on their tribal lands. They had fought several legal battles, asserting that tribal sovereignty allowed them to operate gambling establishments, notwithstanding any state laws to the contrary. The IGRA allowed for the expansion of the Native American gaming industry. Soon, there were hundreds of casinos operating that were run by Native American tribes.
At the same time that Native American gaming was expanding, states were legalizing gambling on a limited basis. In 1989, South Dakota authorized gambling in Deadwood. Several states also legalized riverboat casinos, primarily in the Midwest.
The advent of the internet soon caused a further increase in gaming, both through online casinos and sports betting. Soon, establishments that were domiciled offshore began to market their games to U.S residents. Americans could now wager on sports games from their living rooms if they had a computer and a dial-up modem.
In 1992, Congress passed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act . This legislation largely banned sports betting nationwide, with the exception of a few states that were recognized under PAPSA. Still, the offshore entities coming into Americans homes through their computers served as an outlet for Americans to bet on sports regardless of PAPSA.
The Internet and UIGEA
As the internet gained in popularity so did online wagering. Soon, full-fledged online casinos were operating, offering games such as poker and blackjack. Online poker became a hugely profitable offering for online casinos, and many players were making a living gambling online. In addition, fantasy sports surged in popularity and operated in the gray area of legality.
Congress attempted to provide some clarity to the situation at the same time attempting to crack down on the proliferation of online wagering. The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 made it illegal to accept payments in connection with a wager that was made over the internet. It legalized fantasy sports as a game of skill that it did not deem to be gambling. The legalization of fantasy sports led to an entire industry known as daily fantasy sports that immediately surged in popularity before it too became the subject of efforts to restrict it.
Based on the authority that it received from UIGEA, the U.S. Government began to crack down on online betting. In April 2011, several online poker operators were indicted and accounts were seized. Many millions of dollars in customers’ accounts were seized, and the industry was effectively shuttered. Still, it was not long before efforts began on the state level to legalize online gambling. Before long, New Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania had all legalized online poker. Many other states seem poised to follow suit.
Murphy Legalizes Sports Betting
2018 saw one of the most major developments in U.S. gambling history. Several states, including New Jersey, had been seeking to legalize sports gambling, challenging Nevada’s hegemony in this area. Soon, this led to a legal challenge that made its way to the United States Supreme Court. In Murphy v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, the Supreme Court struck down PAPSA as unconstitutional. Essentially, the Court reasoned that PAPSA was an attempt to force states to enforce federal laws regarding sports gambling. Since that is restricted by the Constitution, the Supreme Court negated the law. In the wake of Murphy, states have been rushing to legalize sports betting.
Today, gaming is a thriving industry across the entire country. Gambling revenues have increased each year for the past the ten years and now stand at roughly 77 billion dollars. Lotteries and other gaming revenues help fund state budgets, and countless jobs are provided by the gaming industry. We think it highly likely that the state governments protect their tax revenue and attempt to further shut down offshore gambling operations.