For many years, sports fans in the US were - unlike the vast majority of the rest of the world - unable to bet on their favorite sports. There were a few exceptions, but for the majority of the 20th century, sports betting was outlawed in the USA.
This ban was reinforced in 1992, when the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) became law. PASPA banned all new states from allowing people to bet on sports, though the existing exemptions for some states - Nevada, Oregon, Delaware, and Montana - were allowed to continue.
This is part of our series on sports betting laws and tips.
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However, New Jersey legally challenged PASPA in 2012, with the case eventually reaching the United States Supreme Court in December 2017. On May 14th 2018, the US Supreme Court issued a ruling that PASPA was unconstitutional, as it violated individual states’ rights to set their own laws regarding betting on sport. Since that landmark ruling, more and more states have started to embrace betting, and in this piece, we’re going to focus on four in particular: Rhode Island, West Virginia, Nevada, and New Mexico - all of which were originally impacted by PASPA but now have the opportunity to make betting on sports a part of their state’s future.
Is sport betting legal in Rhode Island, West Virginia, Nevada, and New Mexico?
Yes: all four states benefit from the Supreme Court ruling that overturned PASPA, and it is now legal to bet on sports in each state. However, there are a number of limitations and restrictions on how sports bets can be placed in certain states. Here’s how our four focus states shape up at the time of writing.
Everything you need to know about sport betting in Rhode Island
Can you bet on sports in Rhode Island?
If you’ve been wondering when is sports gaming coming to Rhode Island, then the good news is that the wait is over: it is now legal to bet on sports in Rhode Island. Legislation was first signed by Governor Gina Raimondo in June of 2018; however, the initial Rhode Island sports betting regulations remain rather narrow in their scope.
What is the start date for sport betting in Rhode Island?
There is good news; the Rhode Island sports gaming regulations were implemented in November 2018, and remain in place at the time of writing. As a result, residents of the Ocean State no longer have to worry about the sports betting Rhode Island start date, and can now bet in their home state - though not without significant limitations.
How to bet on sports in Rhode Island?
Unfortunately, while the changes to Rhode Island sports betting regulations have been welcomed, the ability to bet on sports is not yet widely available in the state. At present, only two casinos in the state are able to offer single-game sports wagering: Twin Rivers casinos in Tiverton and Lincoln. The betting options provided at the casinos are provided by IGT and William Hill, who enjoy 32% of Rhode Island sports gaming revenue, with Twin Rivers collecting 17%, as well as $100,000 compensation for their role as - at present - the only place that Rhode Island sports gaming regulations allow people to bet on sports games.
As a result of the above, those wishing to bet on sports will need to travel to one of the two casinos to place their bets. Also, players will also need to be aware of the fairly hefty Rhode Island sports gaming tax rate on winnings which, at the time of writing, was set at 51% - which is anticipated to be one of the highest in the country.
In summation, the above information suggests that there’s good and bad news for those who have been wondering when does sport betting start in Rhode Island. Simply put, it is already possible to bet on sports in Rhode Island, but has yet to become widely adopted, and online options are literally non-existent.
The Rhode Island Lottery will also be controlling the industry in the state, and the lottery already allows people to play online via an app. As a result, there may be the possibility for those looking for mobile options in future, as the implementation of the lottery app clearly suggests that such options have been seen to be beneficial - it is hoped that, in time, Rhode Island sports betting news will come to detail that online options will soon be available.
What are the best apps and websites for betting in Rhode Island?
- In Rhode Island, the ability to bet on sports via apps and websites are not provided for in the current legislation.
- As a result, it is not currently possible to use apps or websites to place sports bets in Rhode Island; anyone wishing to bet on sport would need to visit one of the two casinos where it is currently legal to bet on sports.
Everything you need to know about sport betting in West Virginia
Is sports betting legal in West Virginia?
Yes, it is legal in to bet on sports in West Virginia, and thanks to wider-ranging legislation than was passed in Rhode Island, all forms of betting on sports has been legalized. It is possible to bet on sport at casinos, as in Rhode Island, but West Virginia online sports gaming is also possible, and individuals can also use a West Virginia sports betting app if they prefer.
What is the start date to bet on sport sport in West Virginia?
As with Rhode Island, West Virginia’s start date for betting on sports has already passed, with the first sports bets taken in August 2018. Interestingly, the ability to bet on sports was technically legal before this date, with the state passing legislation to permit the practice in March 2018 - which was actually before the Supreme Court’s ruling. As a result of this earlier legislation, West Virginia was able to be one of the first states to put the Supreme Court’s decision into practice.
How to bet on sports in West Virginia?
Those looking for West Virginia football betting options, as well as the ability to bet on other sports, are relatively well served by the options in the Mountain State. The Penn National-owned casino, Hollywood Casino, was the first land-based casino to open its sportsbook, with Mountaineer Casino and The Greenbrier - a private resort - following suit soon after.
However, those wishing to take advantage of good West Virginia sports odds online may find they have to wait awhile. While one of the headline events of last year’s incredible West Virginia sports gaming news was that the law provided the opportunity to bet online and via apps, the legislation is yet to be enacted. So, for the moment, those wishing to bet on sports in West Virginia will have to visit one of the land-based casinos to do so, though this looks likely to change soon.
What are the best apps and websites for betting in West Virginia?
- Sports betting apps and websites West Virginia residents can use may be legal but, at present, there are no online sportsbooks currently in operation.
- However, this looks set to change: in December 2018, DraftKings Sportsbook announced their intention to offer an app in the near future,
Everything you need to know about sport betting in Nevada
Is sports betting legal in Nevada?
Yes - and, in fact, betting on sports has been legal in the Silver State for quite some time. For much of the 20th and 21st century, Nevada was the only state where it was possible to bet on sports.
What is the start date for sport betting in Nevada?
Sportsbooks have been part of Nevada’s history for a very long time. Gaming was legalized in Nevada in 1931, with sports bets legalized in 1949. The long-standing history of betting on sport in Nevada meant the state was exempt from the 1992 PASPA legislation. Given Nevada’s long, uninterrupted history in providing options for betting on sports to its residents, the state is ahead of the game when it comes to the betting industry, and Nevada sports betting regulations are being seen by other states as a reliable framework on which to build their own legislation following the Supreme Court’s ruling.
How to bet on sports in Nevada?
If you’re looking for Nevada football betting, racetrack betting, NHL betting, or anything else besides, you have plenty of options. Sportsbooks are available at a number of physical sites, including Westgate casino, the Wynn Las Vegas casino, and various Caesars entertainment casinos - in fact, you’d be hard-pressed to find a casino in Nevada that doesn’t offer a sportsbook!
What are the best apps and websites for sports betting in Nevada?
If you’re looking for options for online betting in Nevada, downloading an app to the device of your choosing is by far the best choice. Thankfully, those seeking a Nevada sports betting app will find there are plenty of apps available from the biggest names in the industry, including:
- Wynn sportsbook apps, the app version of the famous sportsbook casinos
- PlayMGM app, produced by the company behind casinos Bellagio and Luxor
- NV Sports app, which is backed by both the South Point Casino and Rampart Casino
- Caesars Sports, provided by the same company who run the famous casino chain
- STN sports, part of the Stations casino brand
- Westgate, provided by the same company who run the land-based casino sportsbook of the same name
- Golden Nugget, from the same company that owns the independent land-based sportsbook of the same name
- William Hill, a UK-based brand with a strong international reputation and excellent sportsbook pedigree
Other Nevada betting apps include:
- B Connected
- Treasure Island
- CG Technology
Thanks to all of the above, anyone hoping to place a sports bet in Nevada will find themselves very well served!
Everything you need to know about sport betting in New Mexico
Is sports betting legal in New Mexico?
Yes, it is legal to bet on sports in New Mexico thanks to the Supreme Court decision to repeal PASPA. New Mexico has not yet sought to introduce state legislation to specifically legalize sports bets. However - and importantly - betting on sport is not specifically outlawed in New Mexico, either.
As a result of this gray area of the law, the Pueblo of Santa Ana tribe were able to introduce a sportsbook to their Santa Ana Star Casino & Hotel via a gaming compact with the Land of Enchantment. Such a move was possible because the gaming compact between the tribe and New Mexico expressly permits “Class III Gaming”, which also legalizes sports bets. With PASPA repealed, the casino have been able to open a sportsbook as there is no state law that expressly prevents it from doing so.
What is the start date for sport betting in New Mexico?
In truth, those wondering when does sports gaming start in New Mexico cannot find a particularly definitive answer. As discussed, technically, betting on sports in New Mexico has already begun: the Santa Ana Casino & Hotel opened their sportsbook on October 16th 2018, ensuring that there are options for legal sports betting New Mexico residents can engage with if they wish.
However, sports bets as a whole - and outside of gaming compacts - has yet to start, and there seem to be no particular plans in place for sport betting regulation New Mexico locals can utilise - outside of the Santa Ana Casino - in the near future. However, this may be subject to change.
How to bet on sports in New Mexico?
- For New Mexico residents, the only option is to visit the Santa Ana Casino & Hotel, which is located around 10 miles north of Albuquerque in Bernalillo, NM.
- At this point, there are no websites or apps that allow sports gaming in New Mexico, so those wondering where to bet on sport have one option - the Santa Ana Casino.
While the options may be rather limited - Nevada excluded - for the moment, initial signs suggest that all four states will have a role to play in the future of sportsbook betting in the United States.