US State Poker Guide

March 31, 2015
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US Legal State Poker Guide

About Legal US Online Poker

  • • Online poker remains unregulated in most states.
  • • There is no federal law that makes playing poker illegal online.
  • • No one in the country has ever been charged with playing online poker.
  • • Several states are preparing to launch fully regulated poker sites very soon.

Legal online poker in the US is far from simple. The events of Black Friday, when some of the biggest poker sites on the net disappeared overnight in 2011, reminded everyone that online poker is still legally ambiguous in the United States. This controversial topic is such a grey area because there are significant differences between the federal regulations and those that some states have passed. In fact, many states do not even have legislation directly aimed at online gambling! Basically, online poker legality in the US is no longer a simple "yes" or "no" question. That's where we come in - to help you make sense of everything you need to know in our US states poker guide.

US Real Money Poker Issues

Some online poker rooms know which states prohibit online poker (and use this information to keep restricted players out) but you cannot rely upon them to be completely up to date. In fact, many of them don't have any protections in place at all! Only you can protect yourself from breaking your specific states' laws.

These issues include playing for real money, using your credit card to deposit, how old you must be to gamble, and what obligations you have for paying taxes on your winnings. Your US state's online poker laws cover a lot of bases and even ignoring one of them could lead to serious legal troubles in your future. Do the research now and play with some serious peace of mind.

What do you need to know about US online poker:

  • Is it legal in your state and will there be official legislation soon?
  • Can you play for real money, play money or both?
  • Who are the legislators that are pushing to get online poker sorted out in the state?
  • What penalties are there (if any) for playing online poker in the state?
  • Do online poker sites accept players in the state?

And those are the answers we are going to bring you.

US Poker Laws

Getting the Answers You Need

It is important to know what is going on in your state because you may or may not live in a US state that prohibits online poker. US states' online poker laws vary greatly and ignorance is no excuse - if you break the law, you may be held responsible someday. In our US states poker guide, we can show you everything you need to know to navigate these murky waters. We have examined each and every one of the individual states to see exactly where online poker is legal and where it is not. Then, we take all of this raw information and explain the details so you see which restrictions apply to you and why. Basically, this is required reading for anyone that wants to play legal online poker from the US.

American legislation doesn't just affect poker. With online gambling so popular across the States, it's important to know where and how can you can bet on real money games online. Our casino experts have reviewed the best, 100% legal USA online casinos so you can gamble safely and securely whenever you want.

Online Poker is not Illegal!

Although a couple of states have outlawed internet poker, there are no federal statutes in the United States that make it illegal to play online poker. The infamous UIGEA does not make it illegal to play at US poker sites, and in fact only addresses banking issues. Americans cannot own online poker sites, and payment processors have some hoops to jump through, but normal players like you don't have to worry about Uncle Sam - well, except for tax purposes. Even after the US justice department seized Full Tilt poker, they made a deal to make sure each and every US player got their money back! If your state is giving you a green light, then you have nothing more to worry about.

Deciding Where to Play

Once you know the legal situation of poker in your state, you still have some research to do - then it's time to track down a great online poker website that will accept you! We have a great list of poker site reviews that list sites that accept US players and have thoroughly checked them out to ensure that we are only bringing you the most solid sites out there. Online poker in US states is alive and well and you know that you can count on us to help you get the ball rolling with this state by state legal online poker guide.

Check out our list of state online poker pages and find out whether or not you can play online poker legally. If so, we can show you the best online poker sites that accept players from your state and help you get started the right way today.

And don't forget, no matter where you are there is probably a live casino nearby where you can play poker. Check out our list of the Top 5 Offline American Poker Rooms.