Online gambling in the USA does have two sides. Online gambling is regulated on state basis meaning that different states do have different laws. Right now you can enjoy gambling in Nevada, Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania. In most states you can play lottery and racetrack betting. Make sure the casinos have a license and proven fair in independent audits.
Gambling has a vast history in the United States, and it has been present in one form or another ever since the country’s inception.
Throughout the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, horse racing, dice, and card games were the game of choice for illegal gambling activities of elite members of society as well as the working class. Gambling regulations were minimal to non-existent, and owners of gambling establishments would often resort to bribery as means of “licensing” their on-going operations.
The Great Depression – 1929 to 1932 – took a heavy toll on the majority of countries across the globe, including the United States. In an effort to combat its effects and bring about an economic boost, the state of Nevada legalized many forms of gambling in 1931.
However, it wasn’t until the 1950’s that gambling in Nevada truly started picking up steam, particularly in Las Vegas. The city’s quick proximity to key states such as California led to an influx of gambling enthusiasts and a subsequent boom in gambling.
Yet, due to the country’s history of illegal gambling, the majority of Vegas’ gambling establishments were owned by shady figures and thus linked to criminal activity. In the 1960s, however, reputable businessmen started investing and purchasing the most popular casinos and hotels in Vegas, ridding the city of its links to organized crime.
The current state of gambling in Las Vegas today needs no further explanation, as everyone is aware it is the de-facto gambling capital of the Western world. In 1977, New Jersey legalized gambling in Atlantic City, which revitalized tourism in the city and brought about a spiral of positive economic effects. To date, Atlantic City remains a highly sought after tourist destination in the US, primarily because of its gambling establishments.
Many forms of land-based gambling are widely legal across the United States, but Atlantic City and Vegas’ are the main gambling hubs. Nonetheless, it is comforting to know that no matter your location in the states, a gambling establishment should be a few hours ride away, at worst. Some popular US land casinos are Caesar’s Palace, The Bellagio, the Ameristar Casino & Hotel, Blue Lake, Bally’s Atlantic City Hotel & Casino, and so forth.
As the regulation of gambling and gambling itself has a rich history in the United States, we will focus on the more recent history of issues of gambling legality on US soil.
Land-based gambling, as the majority of residents are well aware of, is widely legal in the States. However, Internet gambling was a legal grey area up until very recently.
Before we give you a brief explanation about the legality of online casinos for US players, we will give you the short answer: it is not illegal to place bets in online casinos, as long as the online casinos are not physically located on US soil. This means that online casinos serving US players that are based off-shore with an off-shore license, such as Costa Rica, Panama or Curacao, are perfectly safe for US gamblers to place online bets and receive payments.
With more recent changes to legislation, several US states have also legalized Internet gambling, leading to 100% legal US-based online casinos. However, you must consult your state laws on this matter, as the rules vary by state.
In 1992, congress passed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, which aimed to regulate sports betting in its many forms. In 2018, however, the act was deemed constitutional and sports betting was legalized on a federal level.
In the early 2000s, Internet gambling started picking up steam as well. However, the legality of online gambling for US players was highly ambiguous. Fortunately, in 2011, the Federal Wire Act of 1961 was challenged by Virginia Seltz, which led the Department of Justice to constitute that the act only applied to sports betting. The effect of this had a groundbreaking impact on online gambling in the States. What followed next was a resolution that proclaimed that online gambling was now legal on a federal level, but it was up to the states to define their online gambling laws.
Several states, such as Nevada, Delaware, and New Jersey quickly acted on this monumental change and aimed to capitalize on the ever-growing market of Internet gambling. At the time of writing, legislation regulating online casinos is still pending in several states, but the process is going slow, and there may be some time before US-based online casinos become truly mainstream across the country.
Nonetheless, the future's looking bright. What is a slow process, is also an inevitable one. In our minds, there is no doubt that US online gambling will boom in the States in the years to come.
Gambling has always been a notable part of US culture, and many Americans consider gambling as an entertainment activity they resort to on a semi-regular basis. The booming land casino industry speaks well of this fact. Casino, hotel and restaurant resorts are mega popular across US soil, and they can be found in nearly every state. There, players can enjoy a wide range of casino games that all have their fair share of popularity. Slot machines are by far the most popular casino game for US players, and some US land casinos boast thousands of physical slot machines for players to bask in.
The same can be said for online casinos as well, as these games often comprise the lion’s share of a casino’s gaming selection. The fast paced, fast paying nature of these dazzling machines of luck make them attractive to play and easy to pick up, as all one has to do is spin and enjoy the rush of dopamine.
Table games are also enjoyed by US players a great deal. Blackjack and Craps are highly popular due to their large factor of skill, and frequent portrayal in media such as TV shows, movies and the general pop culture. Baccarat, known as the “high-roller” game, is extremely simple to play, but it is so popular that many land casinos have separate Baccarat VIP rooms for the most ambitious players. Poker, in many of its variants such as Casino Hold’em and TXS Hold’em, is enjoyed both casually and professionally in the US, with frequent televised tournaments that bring about high entertainment value.
As a US gamer, it is perfectly safe to gamble at off-shore licensed US online casinos or local state casinos regulated by state legislation.
As per US laws, generally all income is taxable. This means income gained from overseas as well, regardless of its source.
Gambling winnings have a 25% flat tax in the United States. However, online casino play is not easy to track down, and potentially you may get away with not paying taxes on your online gambling winnings if you avoid an audit – but we strongly recommend against it.
The best way to keep track of your taxable winnings is to keep a personal record of your gambling activities by writing down your winnings and losses of each gaming session. Fortunately, many US online casinos also keep record of your betting history which you can access yourself or request via customer support.
It is important to note that you must only pay taxes on net winnings, meaning your winnings minus your losses. For instance, if you’ve won $500, but lost $400, only $100 are liable to taxation.
Absolutely, all US online casinos allow the use of USD for deposits, withdrawals and gameplay. In many US casinos, you can also gamble with cryptocurrency, which has a myriad of benefits of its own.
Yes. Most US online casinos let you try out their selection of games via “Fun Play”, meaning free gameplay with no time limits. This is a good chance to try out any games you may like before digging in with real money action. In some cases, you will need to create an account before playing for free.
Yes, and plenty of them. Bonuses are one of the main advantages of online casinos over land casinos, and operators use these high-value promotions to entice newcomers and retain existing players. Welcome bonuses, reload bonuses, no deposit bonuses, cash back bonuses, free spins bonuses – these are the primary types of bonuses you can expect at US online casinos.
In some cases, your withdrawal will be subjected to fees, depending on your withdrawal method, but also the casino in question.
In general, withdrawals to e-wallets and via cryptocurrency have no fees. Payments via Cheque and Bank Transfer usually have a fixed fee and higher minimal withdrawal limit, such as $100. Our review section contains all the details on fees and payments, as this varies on a case-by-case basis.
All you need to do before you can claim your winnings is verify your identity. This is a security measure that is a requirement at all respected online casinos.
Generally, this process can be completed by sending photos or scans of your personal ID and/or a utility bill to your name no older than 3 to 6 months.
Identity verification usually takes a day or two, and is mostly a mere formality.
The waiting time for your requested withdrawal to reach your wallet will depend on the payment method you’re using.
Withdrawals via Bank Transfer, Credit/Debit cards and Cheque payments may take a week or two to process. In contrast, payouts to e-wallets and via cryptocurrency are usually completed within a few business days.
US Online Casinos give players a fair choice of payment methods, ranging from Credit and Debit Cards, to E-wallets, Bank Transfer and Cheque payments. It's up to players to choose which providers suit their needs the most.
Most common US online casino payment methods:
As a general rule of thumb, US online casinos prioritize sending your payout to the same method you used to deposit, so keep this in mind before playing for real money.
In today’s world of hundreds of online casinos it is more important than ever to highlight the standout brands from those that are making the least effort in satisfying customers. This is why our team of experts examines every US online casino from head to toe, leaving no stone unturned, in order to help you make a well-informed decision on where you want to play. Nonetheless, you can’t make a wrong turn on our website. The US casinos we recommend are all safe and recommended for play, but, inevitably, some brands excel more than others, and personal preferences also come into play. Therefore, it’s best to look at our reviews first, and then decide on where you’d most feel at home during your gaming sessions.
As you read below, we will give you a rundown of the key elements of each online casino and how they fare in the general US market.
As online casinos serving US players must acquire an off-shore license such as Panama, Costa Rica or Curacao, this limits the selection of available software providers to US online casinos in comparison to European brands. Microgaming, NetEnt, Yggdrasil, Play N Go and similar leading providers are largely unavailable across US online casinos, but the choice of games at US casinos is still impressive and brimming with quality. Betsoft, Rival and Real Time Gaming are the most popular US casino gaming providers, offering hundreds of well-paying, 100% fair games ranging across a swath of categories: slot machines, jackpot games, table games, casual games, and so forth.
What’s more, most US online casinos will let you choose how you want to play: Instant Play via web browser (mobile, desktop), or by downloading the casino software to your desktop (Windows, Mac) for convenient access. In some cases, the download casino offers an even higher range of games. In our US online casino reviews, we undertake a thorough vetting process of the casino’s gaming library, highlighting all the good parts as well as any deficiencies that may hinder your enjoyment.
Slot machines are by far the most popular US online casino game. They range in the hundreds, coming with various themes and bonus features. You have your Classic 3-reel slots, also known as fruit machines, Video Slots – the best, modern editions of slot machines and Progressive Slots, video slots with a chance of winning a massive life-changing jackpot.
Video Pokers are wildly popular among US players in online and land based casinos alike. Titles such as Aces and Faces, Deuces Wild, All American, Joker Poker, and many others are typically available at US online casinos with excellent payout rates and gameplay qualities.
Table Games are an essential aspect of each US online casino’s gaming library. Titles such as Blackjack, Roulette, Baccarat, Craps and Poker are the least minimum you can expect. Many US online casinos kick it up a notch and offer unique table game variants you are unlikely to find at a land based casino.
If you’re aiming to replicate the immersive gaming experience of a physical casino, then live casinos are your best bet.
These games are brought to you through live high-definition streams, where you are face to face with the presenters. You can place bets, chat with the presenters, and enjoy a wide variety of innovative table games that will add extra spice to your gaming sessions.
All US online casinos are naturally available in US English. This includes the casino interface, account settings menus, customer support and the games themselves.
On a global level, customer support is one of the most essential factors that make up a good online casino. Having access to quick, professional customer service is monumental to having a good time while gambling online. This is why most US online casinos offer 24/7 customer support via live chat. Typically, you will receive a response to your live chat query within a few minutes of your request. Customer support gets special attention in our reviews. Besides live chat, telephone support is also a plus. Email support is the bare minimum an online casino can offer in terms of customer support, and it earns no special mention.
Welcome bonuses are the best bang for your buck you can get from an US online casino. These bonuses are exclusively offered to newcomers and are generally available on your first deposit, or first several deposits. Typically, a welcome bonus will match your deposit by 100% i.e. 100% up to $300, doubling your bankroll.
Free Spin bonuses are pretty self-explanatory. They offer you a set amount of bonus spins on a single slot machine or several slots. Your winnings will then be converted to bonus money that will need to be wagered before it can be withdrawn.
No deposit bonuses are highly popular among US online casino players. They require no deposit on your part, and are as close to “free money” as it gets in the online casino world. No deposit bonuses typically have a cashout limit, usually $100, and higher wagering requirements.
Cashback bonuses are rare among online casinos, but some US casinos still offer them as a way to maintain regular players. Typically, a casino will give you a cashback on 10% to 25% of your previous day or week’s losses. As with all other bonuses, cashback bonuses must be wagered as well.