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  • Friday, December, 2023| Today's Market | Current Time: 09:11:45
  • For the past few years, many US states have started the process of legalizing sports betting, whether online or at brick-and-mortar sportsbooks. The change in policy is due to some shifting in laws that prohibited US-based operators from functioning. The primary law in question is the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA).

    Since PASPA was passed, US citizens interested in betting on sports had two options. The first option was to physically go to one of the states whose laws were established before PASPA and were grandfathered in. The other option was to visit an offshore online sports betting website. Everything changed in May 2018 with a specific decision from the US Supreme Court.

    Murphy vs. NCAA

    Through the years, many cases have been brought against PASPA. One of those lawsuits eventually drew the attention of the Supreme Court. On the 14th of May 2018, the US Supreme Court ruled that PASPA violated the rights of every state (except Nevada, which until that date, was running a monopoly).

    The Murphy vs. NCAA case was a win for the state of New Jersey. Later, it turned out to be a nationwide win, as the case ruling meant that all states could start regulating sports betting as they deemed acceptable. It was not long before dozens of states created local sports betting regulations. While some have gone all out, U.S. states still have taken things slow and are legalizing one sports betting type at a time.

    U.S. States That Have Legalized Online Sports Betting

    Nevada was the only state to have legal sports betting before the PASPA ruling. However, since then, there have been about 20 states that have legalized online sports betting, including:

    • Arizona
    • Arkansas
    • Colorado
    • Connecticut
    • Illinois
    • Iowa
    • Louisiana
    • Michigan
    • New Hampshire
    • New York
    • Ohio
    • Oregon
    • Pennsylvania
    • Rhode Island
    • Tennessee
    • Virginia
    • West Virginia


    As soon as the federal law was struck down, New Jersey moved quickly to unseat Nevada as the king of US sports betting.Today New Jersey is the leading sports betting state based on monthly betting revenues.

    In January 2022, New York joined the sports betting market. Just one month after the regulated market was established, it was crowned the best sports betting state based on monthly betting revenues. The first months saw over $1 billion in betting revenues.

    States That Only Have Land-based Sportsbooks

    A few states didn’t want to fully dive into the sports betting market. These are states that have legalized sports betting but not online sports betting.

    • Delaware
    • Maryland
    • Mississippi
    • North Carolina
    • South Dakota

    Delaware was the first state, after PASPA was dismissed, to open a retail sportsbook. Brick-and-mortar sports betting is legal in Delaware and regulated by the state’s lottery authority. However, that authority does not allow online sports betting.

    North Carolina has begun discussions for the legalization of online sports betting. While the discussions are in the early stages, officials are confident that by 2023, online sports betting will also become fully legal.

    Positives From the Legalization of Sports Betting

    There are strong opinions concerning legalization. Many argue that legalizing sports betting can only create problems and that more people will start to gamble. However, the other side of the argument notes there are significant upsides for the states who legalize. Some of the benefits include:

    • Increased tax revenue
    • The downfall of illegal gambling
    • Increased employment
    • Growth of other related Industries

    The tax revenue is what drives most state governments to push legalization. The additional revenues can be utilized to implement healthcare, education, or other discretionary spending. New Jersey, the first state to legalize online sports betting after PASPA, reported close to $30 million in taxes from sports betting.

    Upcoming Legal Sports Betting States

    There are also a few states in the process of legalizing their sports betting industries. These states include:

    • California
    • Florida
    • Kansas
    • Maine
    • Nebraska

    Out of these, Kansas has already legalized online sports betting, and about 12 sports betting sites will go online very soon.In one way or another, almost every U.S. state has legalized sports betting, and it is only a matter of time before you can place a bet anywhere in the US.

    Currently, the only state that hasn’t opened any talks or isn’t considering implementing sports betting laws is the state of Utah. The Mormon majority state is highly against gambling. With 90% of the state’s representatives, Mormons dominate Utah state politics. The state isn’t expected to change any time in the near future.


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