Legal online sports betting appeals to a wide swath of people in the United States and abroad who enjoy watching sports and wagering on potential winners. Instead of driving to a physical casino, Americans can now sit on their couch and bet on whatever game is on television instantly from the comfort of their laptop, tablet, or smartphone.
Online sports betting is legal on a state-by-state basis. The first states to institutionalize online sports betting were New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Today, four states offer legal online sportsbooks, and there are several more that are in the process of rolling out this type of wagering. Clearly, there is a real desire for online sports betting, and additional states will likely follow soon.
What might be surprising is how diverse the people are who use online sportsbooks today. Since you can place bets from your home, the local sports bar, or anywhere else you happen to be, people from all backgrounds participate in online sports betting. It makes an excellent alternative for those who are nowhere near, or cannot access, a physical sportsbook.
At the time of writing, online sports betting is legal in four states and in the works in several more. The four states leading the pack include Indiana, West Virginia, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. Below is a round-up of information about how online gambling works in each of the previously-mentioned states, as well each state’s operating (and legal) online sportsbooks.
After the passage of House Bill 1015 in 2019, casinos in Indiana began to legally offer retail and online wagering for a variety of sports games, matches, and other events. September 2019 was a big month for Indiana, as it marked the birth of sports betting. By the end of the month, almost all casinos in Indiana had opened their own sportsbooks.
The introduction of online sports betting destinations took next to no time after casinos completed their retail outlets. Many different legal mobile sportsbooks were online and live by the end of October 2019. Currently, there are 15 casinos in Indiana that offer online sports betting options for state residents. Many of these casinos are partnered with major nationwide sportsbook companies that provide services in several states.
DraftKings Sportsbook is a major brand offering sports betting in several states, and it does reach into Indiana. This company is partnered with Ameristar Casino Hotel. It provides a considerable number of games to bet on and wager types, exclusive rewards, pools, and a highly-qualified support team.
Users who choose DraftKings Sportsbook in Indiana will have several promotions and bonuses to take advantage of, including a sign-up bonus for as much as $1,000. The bonus is given after your deposit and risk-free bet.
BetMGM is an extension of MGM Resorts International, a company that operates casino resorts in the United States and abroad. This sports betting service features pre-game and in-play betting, offers live video streaming options, and comes with an easy-to-use app.
Those who choose to use BetMGM Sportsbook for sports wagering online in Indiana will receive an excellent bonus through a $500 risk-free bet. There’s also a current promotion where you can bet $10 to get $10 on NCAA sports games.
As one of the most notable names in sports wagering, FanDuel Sportsbook is available in Indiana. It’s a great option for betting on basketball, baseball, football, and more. This company offers sportsbook apps for iOS and Android and has the same app across states. Everything is streamlined and straightforward to use.
This brand has an excellent promotion for people from Indiana who sign-up. When you sign-up, you will enjoy a $500 risk-free bet, so you don’t have to worry about losing money on your first bet.
BetRivers Sportsbook is a property of Rush Street Interactive. It’s one of the top choices for sports betting online in Indiana. Partnered with French Lick Resort, BetRivers allows you to wager on a massive number of sports using the betting method of your choice.
When a resident of Indiana signs-up for BetRivers Sportsbook, the company credits you with a 100 percent match for your deposit of up to $250. There are also daily promotions, bonus playthroughs, and a loyalty program.
Finally, PointsBet Sportsbook is another one of the best sportsbooks in Indiana. It’s run by a reputable brand and features unique betting options. When you sign-up for this sports wagering service, you will enjoy a wide variety of pre-game wagers. You will also enjoy in-play betting options for any game you can imagine.
Residents of Indiana enjoy a free $25 bet when signing up for the service, but that isn’t the only promotion being offered. You can also deposit up to $250 and receive the same amount in free bonuses so you can bet longer and harder on your favorite games.
As of April 2020, New Jersey has offered online sports betting for more than a year. The state has 17 sites where you can wager on sports games and matches as long as you’re a state resident. In addition, there are also 10 retail locations where you can bet on sports in-person. All these things became possible due to a bill signed in June 2018 by Governor Phil Murphy to make sports betting legal.
One of the most surprising things about the online sports betting timeline in New Jersey is how quickly it got going once it was legal. Sports wagers were taken at physical locations three days after the law was passed. This was followed by online and mobile sportsbooks, which began to reach the market in July. All racetracks and casinos in the state may offer sports betting if they have proper approval and licensing.
A name you’ve already seen on this list, DraftKings, also offers sports betting to the residents of Indiana through the Resorts Atlantic City license. This sportsbook is well-known for extending dozens of international and American sports that users can wager on in many different ways, such as live in-game betting, Teasers+, and Sportsbook Pools.
The current promotion offered to New Jersey residents who sign-up for DraftKings is one of the best available. Through an up-to $500 deposit bonus and a $500 risk-free bet, you can get started without breaking the bank.
BetMGM, another top sportsbooks in the United States, is an option for New Jersey residents who are of age. This online sportsbook service provides a variety of betting options, including point spread, moneyline, points total, and parlay bets, so you can choose the option that works best for your style.
New customers to BetMGM in New Jersey can take advantage of a risk-free bet of up to $500, so you get credits back if your first bet fails. This is a decent choice for someone who wants to enjoy a significant stake to start out with the system.
FanDuel, one of the best sportsbooks in New Jersey, offers fantasy sports, casino games, and race betting. It provides a considerable number of options for betting on all major United States sports, including basketball, baseball, football, boxing, soccer, and more.
Within New Jersey, you can take advantage of two different promotions right now. The first is a $5 bonus when you make your first deposit, and the second is the option of a risk-free bet of up to $500.
Fox Bet Sportsbook is a newer sports betting service that currently offers legal wagering on sports in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The company provides a massive number of sports to wager on, including football, basketball, soccer, hockey, NASCAR, boxing, and more.
For residents of New Jersey, this sportsbook offers a substantial sign-up bonus that consists of two parts. When you make your first deposit, it gets doubled up to $500. On top of that, you also get a risk-free $500 bet to get started.
PointsBet Sportsbook is a newer addition to the sports wagering world and offers services in New Jersey and Indiana. One of the things that sets it apart from other sportsbooks is that the more often you win bets, the more rewards you get. This means you can stack up cash quickly.
PointsBet Sportsbook offers sign-up promotions that help you ease into sports betting. When you sign-up, you will enjoy up to $1,000 in risk-free bets, which is higher than most other sportsbooks.
Pennsylvania legalized sports betting in land-based casinos and online in late 2017 with the introduction of a comprehensive gaming expansion bill. The sports betting industry falls under the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, which focuses on responsible gambling enforcement and compliance. Wagering is allowed on college games, international games, and professional games for those over 21 and located inside of the state.
You should also be aware of the restrictions in place for Pennsylvania when it comes to betting, so there aren’t any surprises. Right now, betting is allowed on sports and not on things like awards, there is no access to betting on eSports, and those who are part of sports leagues cannot bet on the sports they are a part of. Otherwise, residents of the appropriate age who are in the state can wager on games.
DraftKings has been offering sports betting online for Pennsylvania residents since November 2019 and operates under the license of Penn National Gaming. This sportsbook company has more than 10 million players on a worldwide basis, is located in the United States, and makes it simple and easy to withdraw your winnings.
When you sign up for DraftKings Sportsbook from PA, you can also enjoy a sign-up bonus composed of two parts. Whatever you deposit will be matched up to $500 to give you more options in your wagering, while you’ll be provided with a risk-free bet for up to $500, as well.
Only available as a sports betting platform for those in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, Fox Bet Sportsbook is easy to sign up for, and from there, you can find the ideal bet and follow along live with the game or match. This company also offers videos from Fox Sports analysts to help you understand various types of betting allowed using the site or mobile app.
Any new customers from Pennsylvania can take advantage of an exclusive promotion that equals a $1,000 sign-up bonus. Half of the amount comes from matching your deposit (up to $500), while the other half is a risk-free bet, so you get credits to make a new bet if you fail on your first.
FanDuel is one of the largest sports betting companies in the United States and offers online legal sports betting in Pennsylvania as well as an assortment of other states. The site and app are well-designed and provide a section where you can access betting guides and rules to get you through your first bets using the system.
As a new member of the FanDuel Sportsbook, you are offered an initial risk-free bet of up to $500. That means the first bet you make of whatever size up to the maximum will be refunded to you with site credit if the bet is a losing one.
BetRivers Sportsbook is available in Pennsylvania and has a license through Rivers Casino Pittsburgh. The brand offers a vast selection of sports wagering options, including standard options like basketball and football, as well as less common options like table tennis and cycling.
For residents of Pennsylvania, BetRivers Sportsbook features a matching deposit when you sign up for up to $250. In addition to that, the betting service also offers a rewards program so you can win more and get extra rewards by wagering on the sports you like the most.
When you choose to use SugarHouse Sportsbook, you can bet on a wide selection of sports as long as you are of the proper age and located in the state of Pennsylvania. The brand offers many perks like bonus rollovers, a large selection of betting lines, live betting, and a single wallet.
For new users of SugarHouse, you get up to a $250 match on your first deposit. In addition, this sportsbook offers an online rewards program so you can get additional perks for joining.
The final state that has legalized online sports betting at this time is West Virginia, which also allows retail sportsbooks to operate in the state. While mobile betting started a bit rough, it has been fully live since the middle of 2019. The original decision to offer the service happened only three months after the federal ban on sports betting was officially lifted.
While there are no professional sports teams in the state, it offers a selection of online sportsbook apps and websites where sports enthusiasts can wager on their favorite teams and athletes. As long as residents are within the state, they can wager at any of the sportsbooks associated with West Virginia.
One of the largest sportsbooks in the world, DraftKings Sportsbook, offers services to those in West Virginia and allows residents the option of betting on dozens of sports and events. Partnered with Penn National Gaming, DraftKings allows residents of West Virginia to wager on both professional and collegiate games.
If you are signing up with this service for the first time, DraftKings offers a promotion for a matched deposit of up to $500. Conversely, a risk-free bet option is available for a maximum of $500.
The second of the three major online sportsbooks in West Virginia is BetMGM, which also offers its services in New Jersey and Indiana. The sportsbook has a sleek look on the website and app, as well as being easy to use for those who are new to online sports betting or wagering on events as a whole.
All new customers in West Virginia can sign-up for a promotion for a $500 risk-free bet on any game. If you lose, you’ll receive credits for free wagers for the amount you lost.
The last of the top sportsbooks that offer online access in West Virginia is FanDuel Sportsbook, which provides a selection of betting options like spreads, single bets, five-team parlays, moneylines, and more. The number of sports is also impressive and includes all the typical choices, as well as a few of the lesser-known games seen internationally.
One of the promotions for those who are new to FanDuel Sportsbook is a $5 bonus added on top of whatever your first deposit it. You’ll also receive a risk-free bet up to $500, so you get a second chance if the first bet you make goes wrong.
Colorado has offered the ability to gamble on slots, video poker, and table games in certain mountain towns for several decades as a way to bring tourists to those locations. However, up until now, the state has not allowed legal sports betting at those casinos or through websites and mobile applications for tablets and phones. That all changed in November 2019 when Proposition DD passed with just 51% of the vote.
Colorado online sports betting launched on May 1, 2020. Physical sportsbooks will begin operating when casinos reopen. Right now, there are fourteen casinos that have licenses to operate sports betting, and more will likely pop up in the next few months as legalization becomes the norm.
Right now, there are four states that are in the process of bringing online sportsbooks to their locations. Some have already passed all required bills to introduce legal online sports wagering, while others are still working through the legislative process. We’re going to give you a brief explanation below of precisely what is happening in each of the states and what to expect going forward.
On June 2, 2019, new legislation made sports betting legal in Illinois. The bill passed the House and Senate and was ratified on June 28 by Governor J.B. Pritzker. The bill made it possible for sports venues to offer betting kiosks and would also make it possible for those in Illinois to wager using online sportsbooks like FanDuel and DraftKings.
The first physical sportsbook in Illinois opened in March 2020, but the state’s residents are still waiting for online sportsbooks to be introduced. The law guarantees physical locations an 18-month head start against competing online sportsbooks. In the meantime, you can find physical sportsbooks at Argosy Casino in Alton and Rivers Casino in Des Plaines.
Gambling laws in Michigan are set out in the Michigan Gaming Control and Revenue Act of 1996, which authorized gambling in casinos in Detroit. While this law permitted many forms of gambling, it did not include sports betting. For that reason, more specific legislature would be required. In December 2019, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed a bill into law legalizing sports betting in Michigan.
This law would make it legal for tribal casinos, commercial casinos, and mobile sports betting to occur in the state. The first forms of legal sports betting started in early March 2020 at several physical casinos, including MGM Grand, Greektown, and MotorCity. Unfortunately, at this time, an expected date has not been set for the launch of online sportsbooks.
The last state that is in the final steps of introducing online sports betting options is Tennessee. It became legal in May 2019 thanks to Governor Bill Lee. Unlike other states where sports betting is legal, Tennessee’s law applies only to online sports betting and doesn’t include casinos.
Online sportsbooks could start operating in the state as early as July 2020. However, that date may change. It’s still unknown exactly which sportsbooks will enter the state. Some notable names have shown interest including DraftKings, FanDuel, BetStars, and more.
The short answer to the second question is a resounding yes, but understanding how bonuses work takes a bit more explanation. There are many different types of bonuses available on legal online sportsbooks, and all of them work in unique ways. Below, we’ll go over the most common bonus types, how they work, and precisely what they offer when choosing online wagering.
As you might guess by the name of this bonus, your receive credits equivalent to your wagered amount, so you won’t lose money if your first bet goes wrong. Newly registered users of online sportsbooks enjoy this benefit as a form of guaranteed security during their first bet. It lets a user get a feel for how a platform works while they make an initial wager and see how things pan out.
The first bet is risk-free in the sense that you aren’t going to lose funds if the bet fails. However, once you use the bonus bet to wager on another game, you can still lose money if the bet fails a second time. So it isn’t risk-free forever, but it does offer the chance to make two bets for the price of one if you lose on the first wager.
FanDuel is one of the online sportsbooks that offers the highest risk-free bets, sometimes with maximums of up to $500.
Known interchangeably as “match bonus” or “deposit bonus”, many companies offer this bonus as a way to encourage large initial deposits from new online sportsbook players. Essentially, up to a specified maximum, whatever you deposit into your account will be doubled with site credits so you can make more wagers.
For example, if you were to sign up to a sports betting website and deposit $20, you’d then get another $20 in site or app credits. On the other hand, if you deposit $300, you will receive an additional $300 in credits that you can use for wagering. What it all boils down to is that the more you deposit (up to a specific limit), the more credits you get, which leads to free wagers or larger bets on wagers you care about.
DraftKings is a good choice when it comes to deposit bonuses as they often offer up to $500, which is a large sum of extra betting money when you start using the app or website.
One of the worst feelings is losing on a bet, but it’s going to happen at times when you take part in sports betting, whether you’re online or in a physical location. The good news is that a loss rebate can help you keep your money when you lose wagers, assuming you choose an online sportsbook that offers them. However, the way these bonuses work can vary, so we want to look at the options.
In some cases, you will need to make a specific deposit during a specified period and be a regular user of a sportsbook to qualify for loss rebates that can range from around 10 percent to 100 percent of what you lost in your wagers during that period. However, there are other sportsbooks operating online that will simply refund your losses during a specific period up to a maximum amount regardless of your history with the brand.
PointsBet Sportsbook is an example of a legal online sportsbook that sometimes offers loss rebates. You place certain types of bets, and if your overall wagers lead to a loss, you will have that amount refunded up to $1,000.
The final popular bonus you can find with many online sportsbooks is a VIP program, which can offer a variety of different perks to members of the club. Finding a sports betting app that offers this bonus is an excellent option, but it’s just as essential to determine which brands have the best rewards from their VIP programs. Some of the things you can expect from VIP programs include free entries into sweepstakes, complimentary merchandise, cashback, better bonuses, and waived fees on payouts.
Everyone is going to have their own priorities in terms of which of these things are the most essential, so you should find a program that matches your needs. Some of the things to look for are the best rewards, who is eligible for a VIP program, and how often you’ll use the perks that these programs can offer.
FanDuel is one of the betting sites that offers a VIP program with a variety of perks. Members can enjoy a personal account manager, access to promotions, extra FanDuel merchandise, and more.
Each sportsbook that operates online has a selection of wager options. Some are more common than others. The three below can be found at most legal sportsbooks. Here you can learn about how each of them works. Online betting sites also have other advantages, which we’ll outline later in this article.
A moneyline wager is one of the simplest kinds of wagers you can make at an online sportsbook. Basically, this wager involves betting on a specific team or individual to win a sports game or match. There are other wagers that focus on both who wins and by how much they win. However, moneyline bets are more simplistic and focus only on the person who wins.
For example, DraftKings offers moneyline wagers on table tennis based on the correct score, point spread, total points, total games, or winner of a listed point.
Prop bets, also known as proposition bets, are prevalent on an international level. They are quickly growing in the United States with the introduction of online sportsbooks. Essentially, a prop wager means you bet on a specific player or a particular event that will occur in a game or a match. In some cases, you can bet on only one of these things, while in other cases, both will be available to wager on.
FanDuel, as an example, offers prop betting for the NFL championship. A user can look at a table and bet on an underdog or a favorite getting a certain number of points.
A parlay bet is more complicated than the two wagers above. It has a focus on two or more teams winning. One of the reasons this is a popular wager type is because it typically has a more significant payout than you would get when you select a single team to take a win. The payouts are more significant because of its difficulty since choosing several teams to win (and getting it right) is more challenging than selecting a single group or player.
BetMGM is one of the sportsbooks that offers this wager. You get a more substantial amount of money for each extra team that you guess correctly will have a specific point spread.
While you can find these kinds of bets at physical sportsbooks, there are reasons to consider an online sportsbook instead. In fact, there are benefits to choosing to bet from your own home rather than visiting a specific location:
If you’re new to using online sportsbooks, you might wonder whether they’re fair and safe to use. The short answer to that question as it relates to legal sportsbooks is yes, they are. However, rather than forcing you to take our word for it, we’ll explain exactly why this is the case.
Legal online sportsbooks offer many things that illegal or black market sportsbooks simply can’t and don’t. We’ve listed five of those reasons below for you to learn more about.
When you places bets with a legal sportsbook, you get peace of mind knowing that every game has been thoroughly tested. Unfortunately, illegal or unlicensed websites or apps with free sports betting are much more dubious. Choosing a legal sportsbook means that you know what you’re getting into since thousands of people have used the same service in the past.
In addition to user testing, these games are tested in-house extensively before release. This means you get double the testing and can trust the offerings from top legal sportsbooks online.
The heavy licensing requirements for legal online sportsbooks is another factor that ensures user safety. This isn’t the case with illegal sportsbooks, which make their own decisions on pretty much everything. As you can expect, unlawful sportsbooks will do anything to put themselves in the best position.
Organizations and departments, which vary depending on the state they service, regulate online sportsbooks. This means that the sportsbooks are accountable to regulating entities. When you choose a legal sports betting website, you know exactly what to expect because the brand adheres to specific rules.
Legitimate online sportsbooks will have some way for users to bring up disputes if problems occur. That means you have some sort of recourse if you feel that you have been wronged. This is not going to be the case with most other sportsbooks, which are primarily in the market for themselves.
When using avenues for recourse on legal online sportsbooks, you work through disputes with a regulator. You get the benefit of a neutral party who can look into things without taking one side or another. If you have been wronged, it will be discovered, and action will be taken on your behalf.
When you go to a random sports betting website, do you know who is actually holding onto your money? Chances are pretty good that you don’t. You wouldn’t have any idea what to do if your money were to disappear without a trace. This is what makes legal online sportsbooks different. You always know where your money is and who is responsible for it.
Legal sportsbooks are typically large companies that are accountable to their regulators, the casinos they partner with, and their clients. There is little to no chance that they’ll lose your money. If they do, these companies will have an interest in making things right immediately.
When it comes to free or illegal sports betting sites, you never know when they’re going to pop up or randomly close. The difference with legal online sportsbooks is that they have regulations and requirements. Hearing that one has shut down is very uncommon. You don’t have to worry about the site closing without warning and take your hard-earned money with it.
Even when a legit online sportsbook does close, the company will have plan to ensure you get your deposited money.
It’s essential to consider a number of things when we choose the online sportsbooks we will showcase. We only want to bring attention to legitimate sportsbooks that treat their customers well. Each below factors goes into whether or not we list a sportsbook and is individually significant:
Online sportsbook services may not be legal in your state. Currently, only a few states have legalized mobile and web-based sportsbooks. If you aren’t located in Indiana, West Virginia, New Jersey, or Pennsylvania, legal sportsbooks won’t be available for your use. If you are located in Colorado, Tennessee, Illinois, or Michigan, you can expect to have the option soon.
In short, this form of identification helps verify that individuals are who they say they are. The government regulates online sportsbooks. It requires them to identify and log SSNs under the Bank Secrecy Act and the Patriot Act. To adhere to anti-money laundering protocols, your social security number, name, address, and other important information has to be provided.
Each state in the United States is able to regulate sportsbooks available within the state. When the Supreme Court overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, it gave states the option to offer legalized sports wagering. However, many states have not yet done this, and some face hurdles to offering sports wagering in their location.
There are many options to deposit money at online sportsbooks. However, the most popular method is by credit card. Many sportsbooks also allow the use checks, bank wire transfers, eWallets, and PayPal. There are also sportsbooks that let you deposit using a check or through some popular types of cryptocurrency.
A risk-free bet is a a type of wager. If you make a bet and lose, you will receive credit for a bonus bet equivalent to the original wager. The risk-free distinction means that you aren’t going to lose your money if your initial bet fails. If the bonus bet fails, however, you will lose whatever money you put down.
The answer to this question largely depends on the sportsbook and its partner casino. In most cases, the sportsbook website or application will send your money to your bank account. However, some sportsbooks will have other options available. For example, you can elect to have your check sent to your home. At that point, you can deposit it in your bank account yourself.
Yes. It’s largely safe to bet at legal online sportsbooks, but you should take precautions. Be sure to select a regulated and reputably-licensed company that has been in the business for years. It should have a history of positive reviews and few complaints.