If you have gone online or turned on the TV recently, you have likely seen at least one promotion for legal online sportsbooks. That’s because sports betting is now legal in 37 states and in Washington D.C., and a few other states are looking to join the party very soon. It’s impressive when you consider that Nevada was the only state that offered legal sports betting before May 2018. A major Supreme Court ruling changed that by granting states the individual power to legalize sports betting as they see fit. It’s no wonder legal sports betting has become such a big part of the norm in many places across the country in 2023.
But betting enthusiasts beware: Since rules and regulations regarding legal sports betting are very different from state to state, you have to be extra careful about keeping the rules straight. There are states that allow online sports betting, while others only allow sports betting at designated in-person locations. Some states allow fans to wager on all sports teams, while others prohibit gambling on collegiate teams. And then there’s Montana, which has sports betting parameters unlike any other state. With so many rules to remember, it’s helpful to have a guide to what is legal — and illegal — in each state.
Here’s a state-by-state breakdown of where the country stands on sports gambling, as of January 2023. And remember, if you live in a state where sports gambling is legal, check out SportsLine for expert predictions.
Alabama: Not legal.
The state has proposed multiple bills, including one in 2021, but all have been shot down. Alabama currently doesn’t have any commercial casinos.
Alaska: Not legal.
In 2020, the state put legalizing sports betting under consideration and Gov. Mike Dunleavy even showed support for the bill. However, the COVID-19 pandemic put an end to its consideration and the bill ended up expiring in May 2020.
Sports betting became legal on April 15, 2021. The legislation in place permits 20 operators in Arizona.
First official sportsbook launched in July 2021 and first online sportsbook launched in February 2022. Betting on in-state professional and collegiate teams is permitted.
California: Not legal.
There were two major propositions on the November 2022 ballot that could have legalized sports betting in California, one to legalize in-person sports betting and the other to legalize online sports betting. Both propositions broke spending records and had active ad campaigns, but both were heavily voted down by Californians. It is not known at this time if the topic of legal California sports betting will be brought back up in 2023.
Colorado became the 19th state to legalize betting and as of May 1, 2020 multiple operators allowed residents to open accounts online and place wagers. There are restrictions involving in-state college games: Betting on game outcomes is allowed, but player prop bets in collegiate games are prohibited.
In the 2020 election, Colorado expanded both the number and type of casino games it is able to offer. The state also eliminated some wagering limits.
Sports betting is officially allowed in Connecticut as of September 30, 2021.
Delaware launched legal sports betting in 2018 less than a month after the Supreme Court’s decision. Online sports betting is legal, although there are no in-state online sportsbooks. All betting on in-state collegiate teams is prohibited.
Florida: It’s complicated. Sports betting was temporarily approved and legal, but now it is awaiting another launch due to legal issues.
Just three weeks after legal online sports betting launched, a judge ruled that an agreement between the state of Florida and the Seminole Tribe was illegal and the issue has been tied up in Federal court ever since. Even though the Department of the Interior and the Seminole Tribe filed briefs in August 2022 to reinstate a new compact, discussions on the matter may not start until summer 2023.
Georgia: Not legal
A group of Georgia lawmakers filed bills in January 2023 that would have legalized Georgia sports betting in the Peach State and wouldn’t have needed to be voted on by Georgia residents. But on March 6, 2023, the Georgia Senate voted down multiple bills that would legalize sports betting in Georgia and the House failed to get legislation of their own voted on before the deadline for new bills passed.
Hawaii: Not legal.
A bill was proposed in January of 2019 that would’ve allowed for the regulation of sports gambling through a newly-established corporation, but the bill was denied.
Idaho: Not legal.
No legislation proposed.
Legislation was passed in June to allow sports gambling, though in-state collegiate games will be off-limits under the new law. It will make gambling lawful in a variety of locations both in-person (including at Wrigley Field) and online. Bets were allowed in the state as of March 9, 2020. Bets on collegiate games can only be placed in person, not online. Betting on in-state collegiate game outcomes is allowed, but player prop bets are prohibited.
Wagering on pro and college sports became legal in September of 2019 with both mobile and in-person betting permitted at multiple locations. Betting on collegiate game outcomes is allowed, but player prop bets in collegiate games are prohibited.
Iowa legalized sports gambling in 2019, with multiple sites beginning to take bets at the end of that summer. State law allows for betting on both pro and college sports. Betting on in-state collegiate game outcomes is allowed, but player prop bets in collegiate games are prohibited.
Legal online sports betting launched in Kansas on July 1, 2022.
Kentucky: Not legal, but legislation proposed.
Efforts to get motion passed in 2022 failed. There is no word yet as to whether there are plans to propose a new plan to legalize Kentucky sports betting in 2023.
Retail sports betting launched in October 2021 in many parishes. Mobile sports betting launched in January 2022.
Maine: Not legal, but legislation proposed.
Legislation to legalize online sports betting passed in May 2022, but a launch date has not been set yet.
Maryland approved sports betting following the 2020 election, with in-person sportsbooks launching in the Baltimore area in December 2021. Maryland online sportsbooks officially launched in November 2022.
Massachusetts: Ready to launch
Massachusetts sports betting is set to launch on January 31 at three in-person locations. There is no set date for when Massachusetts mobile sports betting will go live, but legislators are aiming for March 2023 to launch online sportsbooks.
Massachusetts sports betting launched on January 31, 2023 at three in-person locations. Massachusetts online sports betting is expected to launch in March 2023.
Minnesota: Not legal.
Legislation to legalize Minnesota sports betting passed in August 2022, but a launch date has not been set yet.
The first sports bets in Mississippi were placed on August 1, 2018. The state enacted a law in 2017 that allowed for sports betting.
Missouri: Not legal, but legislation proposed.
Missouri had several sports betting bills introduced in recent years but the state hasn’t taken action on them yet. They have been stalled at the state legislature level.
Legal sports betting arrived in the state as of March 2020. Sportsbooks are regulated through the state lottery. The lottery director can decide which sports can be bet on and what kinds of wagers can be placed.
Governor Pete Ricketts legalized sports betting and put it into law on May 25, 2021, although there is only in-person betting. All betting on in-state collegiate games and events, including player prop bets, is prohibited.
New Hampshire: Legal.
New Hampshire joined the list of states with legalized sports betting on the second day of 2020. The state agreed to a six-year contract with DraftKings, so mobile sportsbooks can be utilized throughout the state. All betting on in-state collegiate games and events, including player prop bets, is prohibited.
New Jersey: Legal.
New Jersey long advocated for legalized sports gambling and was responsible for the case that led to the federal reversal from the Supreme Court. As such, they wasted no time in legalizing sports gambling after the decision, opening the state’s first sportsbooks on June 14, 2018. Atlantic City and the MetLife Stadium, among other locations, now offer legalized sports wagering. All betting on in-state collegiate games and events, including player prop bets, is prohibited.
New Mexico: Legal… kind of.
Under the current state laws, sports betting isn’t explicitly prohibited, nor is it a prohibited Class III game in the gaming compacts shared between tribes and the state. This has allowed the Pueblo of Santa Ana tribe to open their own not-outright-legal-but-also-not-technically-illegal sportsbook at its in-state casino. Sports gambling is legal at the Santa Ana Star Casino Hotel and four other tribal casinos
New York: Legal.
New York passed a bill in 2013 that made sports gambling legal at the state level, but the state didn’t open its first official sportsbook until July 2019. Mobile sports betting launched on January 8, 2022, and there are now nine live online sportsbooks in the Empire State. However, all betting on in-state collegiate games and events, including player prop bets, is prohibited.
North Carolina: Legal.
Gambling in North Carolina used to be run exclusively through the Cherokee tribe, and the state passed a bill in July 2019 that permitted sports gambling (including horse racing) to be part of that monopoly. In-person sports betting launched on March 18, 2021, in three designated locations. North Carolina sports betting expanded when an online sports betting bill was signed into law on June 14, 2023, which also opened the market to new sportsbooks. A launch date for online sports betting is expected to take place in 2024.
North Dakota: Not legal, but legislation proposed.
Tribal casino betting only. The last effort to legalize North Dakota sports betting was in 2019 and was unsuccessful.
Sports betting was legalized in Ohio in December 2021 and officially launched on January 1, 2023. In-person and Ohio mobile sports betting are allowed.
Oklahoma: Legal, not yet launched.
Effort to get sports betting in Oklahoma legalized in 2022 failed. There is no word yet as to whether a new motion will be proposed in 2023.
Oregon didn’t need to pass new legislation because they already had limited sports betting legality established at the state level, but they didn’t officially start taking bets until August of 2019. All betting on collegiate games and events, including player prop bets, is prohibited.
Six months after the Supreme Court reversal, Pennsylvania took its first legal sports bet at a casino sportsbook in 2018. Additional licenses have since been handed out and mobile/online wagering is also accepted in-state.
Rhode Island: Legal.
Rhode Island also opened its first sportsbook six months after the U.S Supreme Court’s decision and currently offers sports gambling exclusively at two in-state casinos before online betting launched on September 4, 2019. All betting on in-state collegiate games and events, including player prop bets, is prohibited.
South Carolina: Not legal, but legislation proposed.
Gambling in South Carolina is restricted solely to casino riverboats but state legislature has proposed bills in consecutive years that would open the door to sports gambling. No action has been taken yet.
South Dakota: In the 2020 election, South Dakota approved sports betting.
Four casinos in Deadwood began accepting sports bets on Sept. 9, 2021. In 2021, legislators passed legislation that legalized sports betting in Deadwood. However, bettors must bet on the property of those four casinos. There’s no word when mobile sports betting will be available in the state. All betting on in-state collegiate games and events, including player prop bets, is prohibited.
The Tennessee state legislature approved a sports betting bill in the spring of 2019 that will only allow betting online and on mobile apps. The state began allowing mobile sports betting on Nov. 1, 2021. Betting on collegiate game outcomes is allowed, but player prop bets in collegiate games are prohibited.
Texas: Not legal.
One senator pre-filed a sports betting bill ahead of the 2023 legislative session that would amend the Texas constitution to legalize Texas sports betting. The bill calls for legal sports betting in Texas at a limited number of facilities. Texas sports betting will be legalized if the amendment receives a two-thirds vote from the legislature and approval from state voters in November 2023.
Utah: Not legal.
And very unlikely to happen.
Vermont: Not legal, but legislation proposed.
A proposed bill to legalize mobile sports wagering in-state passed through both the Vermont House and Senate in June 2023. The bill now needs to be approved by the governor, who has already hinted at planning to sign the bill into law.
Sports betting launched in 2021, both in person and online. Betting on in-state collegiate games and events, and player prop bets on all collegiate games, is prohibited.
The state passed legislation in early 2020 to permit sports gambling at tribal casinos in-state. The state does not allow for mobile/online wagering. All betting on in-state collegiate games and events, including player prop bets, is prohibited.
Washington D.C.: Legal.
The Sports Wagering Lottery Amendment Act of 2018 became effective as of May of 2019, and the city has launched its sports wagering app and website that is run by the DC Lottery. All betting on collegiate games and events, including player prop bets, is prohibited.
West Virginia: Legal.
In August of 2018, West Virginia became the fifth state to legalize sports gambling. The state offers both in-person and online sports wagering.
Wisconsin: Retail authorized.
Governor Tony Evers signed an agreement allowing for in-person and mobile app betting while at Oneida Nation’s gaming locations. All betting on in-state collegiate and amateur games and events, including player prop bets, is prohibited.
On September 1, 2021, legal sports betting went live in the state.