Florida Sports Betting: Launch News & Updates (April, 2024)

Is Sports Betting Legal In Florida?

FloridaSports betting is available in Florida via the Hard Rock Bet app and at select retail locations.

Since 2021, the state has been in legal disarray regarding the legality of sports betting.

Below is everything you need to know about what’s happening in Florida. 

Florida Sports Betting Current Status & Updates

The circumstances regarding Florida sports betting are constantly changing, but sports betting is currently available for the time being. Here are the most recent updates:

  • Jan. 13, 2024: Miami Dolphins lose to the Kansas City Chiefs 26-7 in the AFC wild card round of the 2023-24 playoffs.
  • Dec 23, 2023: West Flagler files final briefing in Florida state sports betting case.
  • Dec. 6, 2023: Hard Rock Bet officially relaunches in Florida alongside sports betting at South Florida casinos.
  • Dec. 1, 2023: Gov. DeSantis’ office asked the Florida Supreme Court to dismiss the lawsuit challenging sports betting in the state.
  • Nov. 14, 2023: The state supreme court denied West Flagler’s motion to suspend Florida sports betting.
  • Nov. 8, 2023: West Flagler submitted an urgent request to stop mobile betting offered by Hard Rock Bet and the Seminole Tribe.
  • Nov. 12, 2023: A bettor with the Hard Rock Bet app in Florida won $5.5 million on a four-leg, same-game parlay on the Houston TexansCincinnati Bengals game.
  • Nov. 7, 2023:/strong> Hard Rock Bet opened up its online sportsbook in Florida in a limited fashion. People in the state can make wagers from their phones.

Legal Status of Florida Sports Betting Today

Sports betting is currently legal in Florida. People in the state can bet on the Hard Rock Bet app and at select casinos in person. While the cases proceed at federal and state levels, online sports betting can stay in the state. The Florida Supreme Court has all the required submissions to decide on the state-level case. Meanwhile, West Flagler has until February 9, 2023, to file a petition for a writ of certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court for the federal case.

Florida Sports Betting Background

In April of 2021, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a compact with the Seminole Tribe of Florida to bring sports betting to the state. In May 2021, the state automatically moved the compact forward when the Department of Interior (DOI), namely Secretary Debra Haaland, failed to approve or deny the compact within 45 days. 

Though the legal status was somewhat ambiguous, the Seminole Tribe could move forward with sports betting offerings in the state by November 2021. It did so through the launch of the Hard Rock sports betting app. 

West Flagler Associates, who represents various casinos and racinos around the state, sued the DOI for violation of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA), claiming that the launch of a mobile sports betting app in the state authorizes gaming outside of Indian lands, which contradicts the rules of the IGRA. They also claimed several other violations, forcing Secretary Haaland to disapprove of the compact formally. The Hard Rock Sportsbook app was forced to shut down by December of 2021, starting a year-and-a-half-long legal battle that is continuing today.  

“The District Court then granted summary judgment for the West Flagler plaintiffs, finding that the Compact violated IGRA because its online sports betting provisions impermissibly attempted to authorize gaming off of Indian lands; accordingly, the Secretary had an affirmative duty to reject it,” per the case opinion.

The Seminole Tribe and the DOI filed appeals after the decision by the District Court, arguing that the Hard Rock Sportsbook app did not violate the IGRA because the sportsbook’s servers were located on tribal land. 

Eventually, on June 30, three U.S. Court of Appeals judges unanimously agreed to reverse a ruling from the U.S. District Court that declared a 2021 Florida gaming compact violated the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA). West Flagler filed a petition for rehearing en banc following the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision on June 30. The petition for rehearing en banc was denied by the District of Columbia Circuit Court on Sept. 11

On Oct. 12, Chief Justice John Roberts ordered a temporary stay of the ruling made by the District of Columbia Circuit Court.  A week later, the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) submitted a response to the U.S. Supreme Court opposing West Flagler’s request to stay the mandate. On Oct. 25, Justice Brett Kavanaugh denied West Flagler’s request for a stay of the mandate. This re-validated the initial compact, and the state’s sports betting offerings are available. 

On the state level, West Flagler also sued for violating Amendment 3. The Florida Supreme Court has yet to decide on it.

Florida Online Sportsbooks

At the time of launch, Hard Rock was the only sportsbook that provided online sports betting. Now that it has been relaunched, that is still the case.

Given the tumultuous legal nature of sports betting, it remains to be seen if other sportsbooks, such as FanDuel or DraftKings, can join the state.

Hard Rock Florida

The Hard Rock brand has exploded since the Seminole Tribe purchased it in 2007. Now, with the rise of sports betting in North America, Hard Rock has built out its own online and mobile sportsbook. The app was tested in New Jersey and Iowa before a temporary launch in Florida.

When it was available, Hard Rock Florida offered some solid promotions, and the sportsbook product itself was high quality. The user interface for Hard Rock sportsbook is easy to use, and bettors generally have a great user experience. There are support functions, and deposits are quick and easy. The sportsbook generally offers everything that the major brands in the United States also offer.

Hard Rock Sportsbook Mobile App

ParlayPlay

Individuals in the sunshine state can also partake in daily fantasy sports contests on platforms such as ParlayPlay. Apps like ParlayPlay allow individuals to combine multiple parlay selections into a single betslip. As the app’s name suggests, these selections are then parlayed together and — if every selection wins — people can win up to 155x on their initial stake.

Possible Online Sportsbooks

Just about every major sportsbook will be attempting to figure out a way to get a license in Florida when the time comes. Here are a few:

draftkings sportsbook mobile app

DraftKings Sportsbook

DraftKings is the current leader in sports betting. If online and mobile wagering becomes legal within the state, DraftKings will be entering. DraftKings started out only as a daily fantasy sports platform but has moved into both sports wagering and the online casino scene.

DraftKings has one of the very best mobile applications for sports betting. It is easy to use, there are tons of promotions, and the company has some of the best odds pricing in the game.

Currently, in states with legal DraftKings Sportsbooks, you can get a welcome bonus that includes a $1,000 deposit match bonus and a $50 free bet. The deposit match is a 1 to 5 match. So, $5,000 gets you the full $1,000 match.

draftkings sportsbook apple mobile

fanduel sportsbook

FanDuel Sportsbook

FanDuel Sportsbook is another large competitor in the United States’ market. FanDuel is another company that started off as an online fantasy platform. However, after Flutter Entertainment acquired the company, FanDuel became a massive sports wagering entity as well.

FanDuel may have the cleanest and best mobile and online experience when it comes to sports betting. Everything is easy to find, and there is no clutter on the site. The technology is simply superior to most online sportsbooks. There are also plenty of ongoing promotions. FanDuel also offers one-game parlays, something rare in the sports betting world.

Most experts expect FanDuel to continue to offer its classic welcome bonus of a $1,000 no sweat first bet if it were to join the Florida betting market. This is a huge value, and you can have that first bet be of no sweat, meaning you will get money back in credit if it loses.

FanDuel Sportsbook App Mobile 2022

betmgm sportsbook apple icon 150x150

BetMGM Sportsbook

BetMGM Sportsbook is the online application launched by MGM Resorts International and Entain. These two are major players in the gambling market throughout the world. MGM is renowned for being one of the biggest gambling and hospitality companies, while Entain is a staple in the online gaming scene.

BetMGM runs a fantastic sportsbook as well as an online casino and online poker platform. The sportsbook is known for being one of the most popular with its trusted name and good value. BetMGM offers one of the widest arrays of bets in the United States sports betting market.

BetMGM’s Florida offer is projected to offer a $1,000 first bet, as this is the welcome bonus available in all states where BetMGM operates.

betmgm colorado apple screenshot

Caesars Logo Icon 150x150Caesars Sportsbook

Caesars is one of the most reputable gaming companies in the United States and with its new mobile application for its Sportsbook, it figures to put its stamp on the growing sports betting industry. In April, Caesars acquired William Hill, a British bookmaker that currently operates as a legal and licensed sportsbook in several states. This partnership has yielded one of the best platforms in sports betting.

For those of you who like betting on European sports, Caesars is a great option. Not only does it have all the American sports wagers, but due to William Hill’s European roots, it has tons of bets for European soccer, Formula 1, European golf, and more available on its platform.

Caesars offers the Full Caesar Promo — a $1,250 first bet on Caesars + 1,000 Caesars tier credits + 1,000 Reward Credits® — for new users in all states, and Florida will have access to this offer if Caesars Sportsbook launches in the state. Use our exclusive promo code “LINEUPSFULL” to access this offer.

Caesars Sportsbook mobile app preview 2022
pointsbet app

PointsBet Sportsbook

PointsBet is an Australian bookmaker that also only operates in states that it is licensed in. In America, it is partnered with NBC Sports. The sportsbook is known for offering tons of different ways to wager, like using its invented PointsBetting system.

PointsBet not only offers tons of unique ways to wager, but it also has one of the best platforms available. The mobile app, as well as the desktop site, are designed beautifully and function very well. It is very easy to find the perfect wager for you on PointsBet.

PointsBet has one of the best welcome bonuses as it offers $2,000 worth of bonus wagers for new users in states that it currently operates in.

pointsbet mobile app il

Florida Sports Betting Questions & Answers

Frequently Asked Questions

Is sports betting legal in Florida?

No. Despite being legal for a month in 2021, their online sports betting market was forced to halt operations following a lawsuit that favored the plaintiffs. In June of this year, the ruling was reversed in the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, and SCOTUS recently upheld that decision.

Is FanDuel sports betting legal in Florida?

FanDuel is watching the progress of legislation in Florida legislation very closely. Like other sportsbook apps that seek to be a part of a potentially lucrative Florida betting market, FanDuel hopes to be legal when partnerships are offered with tribal casinos.

Is DraftKings sports betting legal in Florida?

DraftKings is not one of the legal sports betting options in Florida. Until legislators address the concerns of the state’s tribal casino industry, there are no legal sports betting options written into Florida law for anyone inside the state’s borders.

What is the tax rate on online lottery winnings in Florida?

Like Texas, Florida is one of the six states in the country that does not assess an income tax. There is no official tax amount on any lottery winnings in Florida. However, all winnings above $5,000, online or retail, must be reported as income to the IRS.

What is the tax rate on sports betting in Florida?

There is a proposed tax rate for Florida sports betting of 15 percent. This would be administered as an excise tax on the total sportsbook handle. Sports betting by individuals is still illegal in the state. Winnings from outside sports bets would be taxed at the 24 percent federal amount.

Do Indian Tribes control betting in Florida?

Similar to the situation in California, the Native American tribes have a stronghold on the gambling industry in Florida. This stronghold is the very basis of the conflict over sports betting in Florida.

Who has the final say on gaming in Florida?

The residents of Florida have the final say on all gaming expansions in the state per Amendment 3 – a 2018 vote where the voters gave themselves this power in Florida. This means that despite the tribal casino powers, the voters in the state have a significant say in the matter.

Can I play daily fantasy sports in Florida?

Yes, Florida has daily fantasy sports. Several options exist, including Underdog, DraftKings, FanDuel, and Yahoo Daily Fantasy Sports, to play within the state. Daily and season-long fantasy sports are fully legal in Florida. The profit made from playing is taxable income.

Can I bet on casino games in Florida?

You can play at tribal casinos in Florida, but currently, there are no online casinos available in Florida. If Florida were to legalize sports gambling, it is also very likely that online casino games could follow and be legalized. Right now, only in-person casinos are legal.

What is the size of the Florida sports betting market?

The size of the Florida betting market could be massive. Many experts project a sports betting handle passing $2 billion monthly in the state. However, seeing what New Jersey could do in 2020, passing $1 billion, this estimate may be considered conservative.

Sam Shefrin is the founder of Lineups.com, Inc. Before Lineups, he started Daily Fantasy Cafe, Inc. in 2014. Armed with a passion for sports and every Atlanta team, his journey continues with the goal of making Lineups a premier sports analytics destination. He has been quoted on Forbes.com for industry insight and his websites featured on NBATV, Yahoo! Sports, Fantasy Pros, Bleacher Report and SB Nation.