IS IT ILLEGAL TO PLAY ONLINE POKER IN THE US?
Poker has been part of American society for as long as almost 200 years. There are multiple casinos standing nationwide and many cities have their fame based entirely on how popular casino businesses and poker industry is there.
The popularity of poker all over led to the great trend of online poker. There was a time when online poker was famous all over however a bill was passed in 2006 commonly known as UIGEA. This stands for Unlawful Internet Gambling Prohibition Act. This law passed in 2006 created many difficulties for the online poker setups. It also made many grey areas for the people playing poker individually.
What Was The UIGEA Law?
The UIGEA was passed for multiple reasons. It is difficult to go in the depths of the reason behind this law. However, what it did was, make it illegal to offer online gambling services to the citizens of the US. This led to the ban of many famous online poker websites such as FullTiltPoker.net, AbsolutePoker.com and PokerStars.com. This law but did not elaborate on the status of legality of playing poker individually.
In the beginning, it was very strictly implemented and citizens were not allowed to even have poker software on their computers. Many operators were federally prosecuted to offer gambling sites to US citizens.
Does UIGEA Law Still Stand Today?
The law of UIGEA generally stills stands today nationwide however in 2011 it was reversed by the US department of justice. This reversal declared that it was only illegal to bet on sports and made online gambling a matter of intrastate affairs.
Is Playing Online Poker In US Legal Now?
It is difficult to answer this question with a simple yes or no. There is no federal law that makes it illegal to play poker on an individual level or partake in gambling individually. However, ever since it became a state matter, different states have different rules for it.
Online Poker Is Illegal In Which States?
While most states do not have laws against individual gamblers, some states do categorize it under criminal offence. For example, in the states of Washington, the law is pretty strict and one can even be prosecuted for it. The states of Utah and Louisiana also have laws against individual gamblers and playing online poker is criminalized under this law.
In Which States Is It Legal To Play Online Poker?
It is good to be aware of the local laws of your state and be aware of them, however, it might be worth mentioning here that even in the states that ban online poker zero arrests have been made for playing it till date.
There are some States, for example, New Jersey, Delaware, Nevada, and Pennsylvania where it is absolutely legal to play online poker. Online poker is well regulated in these states and players will face no problems for playing poker here online. However, it is important to ensure that the sites offering online poker are authentic and regulated.
Players are encouraged to look up the local laws of their state regarding individual gambling before indulging in it.
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