In the age of digital gambling, one question that many players ask is “is online slot gambling legal?” The answer to this question can vary depending on state laws and specific game types. Each state defines what forms of gambling are allowed within its borders, where they can be played and how old you must be to gamble in them. State lawmakers can also decide whether to allow new gaming options. Some states are far more restrictive than others. For example, residents of Hawaii cannot wager at any casino online or in person.
As the nation continues to move toward more regulated forms of gambling, state-level legislators are leading the charge. After the high court overturned PASPA, 19 states and Washington DC have passed legislation or voted to allow sports betting. Many of those jurisdictions have also approved regulated online casinos, poker and other games. However, despite the growing acceptance of online gambling, it’s still a long road to full legalization for some gaming options.
The most obvious hurdle for iGaming remains federal laws like the Interstate Wire Act of 1961, which prohibits transmission of information and payments related to sports betting across state lines. While a 2011 reinterpretation of the law opened the door to online sports betting, it’s a serious obstacle for other forms of Internet gambling, including real-money slots and iCasino games.
Another significant barrier is the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act (UIGEA), which prohibits payment processors from accepting funds for online gambling sites. This is another major hurdle for states trying to legalize iGaming, although a number of efforts to repeal the law have failed to gain traction in recent years.
A final big obstacle is that some states simply don’t have the political will to pass laws allowing for certain kinds of gambling. This is the case for some states where land-based casinos are already licensed and operating, such as Nevada, where residents can enjoy real-money iCasino games. In other cases, state lawmakers have opted to defer decisions about new gambling options to the local level. This has happened with daily fantasy sports, which weren’t available at the time UIEGA was enacted and led to some states deeming them gambling while others haven’t defined the games in any way.
With sports betting already legal in Georgia, online casino play may not be too far off. However, there are other obstacles to consider, such as the fact that the Peach State’s constitution explicitly prohibits gambling. Legislation aimed at changing this prohibition failed to gain any traction in 2020. Regardless, the state is home to multiple brick-and-mortar casinos that offer a range of gaming options, including slots and table games. This makes the state a good candidate for future legalization.