For many new sports bettors, the minimum age requirement for legal sports betting is one of the single biggest concerns. Underage gambling is viewed as a major offense that can prompt heavy fines or even jail time for sports betting operators, so sportsbooks are extremely strict about who they allow to gamble. Federal law provides fairly extensive guidelines for most forms of gambling, but it has always left the specificity of legal gambling age requirements to individual states. International online sportsbooks are free to set their own limits, but domestic providers are subject to state age requirements.
Legal Gambling Age in the United States Almost every major milestone in our lives is conditioned by an age requirement. To get married or go to war without your parents’ permission, you have to be 18. Before you can drive, you have to turn 16, with the exception of a few states where you can get a driver’s license at the ripe age of 14. Legal gambling ages across the US vary, with states setting the minimum age at either 18 or 21. This can however change depending on the type of gambling, as well as if you're playing in a Native. Legal Gambling Age in the US: State-By-State List December 10, 2018 There’s a wide range of opportunities to gamble in the U.S. Players can find bingo, lottery games, poker, and casinos, as well as online gaming, depending on their location.
Some states offer limited forms of gambling (bingo, charity games, etc.) starting well before the age of 18, but all states require that players be at least 18 years old to bet on sports. 35 states set their legal gambling age higher than 18, which is unfortunate for sports bettors. Thankfully, even in these states, legal sports betting is available to all players who are 18 years old as long as they use international online sportsbooks.
Betting on the ponies is generally accepted at age 18 but again, every legal gambling age is set by its own state. Only in Arizona, Delaware, Iowa, Kansas, Nevada, New Hampshire, Texas, and Wisconsin is the gambling age not set at 18 for pari-mutuel wagering.
Use Sports Betting Sites When 18 To Bet On NFL
The Houston Texans have an incredibly rough opening couple weeks. Week 1, they played the Kansas City Chiefs and got demolished, and Week 2 they’re set to face off against the Baltimore Ravens. The Texans offense looked much worse without Deandre Hopkins, who got off to a great start in Arizona. They’ll have a lot to handle on that end facing off against the Baltimore defense, and the Texans defense showed no real ability to stop Patrick Mahomes, which makes them questionable against Lamar Jackson. This is an interesting game, but the Ravens are deserving favorites.
Sports Betting Ages By State
Each of the states with sports betting is different, but the legal sports betting age by state is almost always 21, while the legal lottery and pari-mutuel betting age is usually 18 (except for Alabama, where all gambling ages are 19 for some reason). The following age minimums for sports betting are what you should stick to, listed alphabetically by state. (Note: The states with an age range indicate areas where there is a different limit for commercial vs. tribal casino gaming and betting, and you can typically err on the side of the lower age.)
- Alabama Betting Age – 19
- Alaska Betting Age – 19
- Arizona Betting Age – 21
- Arkansas Betting Age – 21
- California Betting Age – 18-21
- Colorado Betting Age – 21
- Connecticut Betting Age – 21
- Delaware Betting Age – 21
- Florida Betting Age – 21
- Georgia Betting Age – 21
- Hawaii Betting Age – 18
- Idaho Betting Age – 21
- Illinois Betting Age – 21
- Indiana Betting Age – 21
- Iowa Betting Age – 21
- Kansas Betting Age – 21
- Kentucky Betting Age – 18
- Louisiana Betting Age – 21
- Maine Betting Age – 21
- Maryland Betting Age – 21
- Massachusetts Betting Age – 21
- Michigan Betting Age – 18-21
- Minnesota Betting Age – 18-21
- Mississippi Betting Age – 21
- Missouri Betting Age – 21
- Montana Betting Age – 18
- Nebraska Betting Age – 21
- Nevada Betting Age – 21
- New Hampshire Betting Age – 21
- New Jersey Betting Age – 21
- New Mexico Betting Age – 21
- New York Betting Age – 21
- North Carolina Betting Age – 21
- North Dakota Betting Age – 21
- Ohio Betting Age – 21
- Oklahoma Betting Age – 18-21
- Oregon Betting Age – 18-21
- Pennsylvania Betting Age – 21
- Rhode Island Betting Age – 18
- South Carolina Betting Age – 21
- South Dakota Betting Age – 21
- Tennessee Betting Age – 18
- Texas Betting Age – 21
- Utah Betting Age – 18
- Vermont Betting Age – 18
- Virginia Betting Age – 18
- Washington Betting Age – 18-21
- West Virginia Betting Age – 21
- Wisconsin Betting Age – 21
- Wyoming Betting Age – 18
Legal Sports Betting Age At Land-Based Sportsbooks
Generally speaking, the legal sports betting age at land-based sportsbooks is 21 years old. Now that the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA, 1992) has been overturned, each state is allowed to set its own age minimums for its own sports wagering industry. Most states have chosen 21, as this aligns well with their existing gambling policies at the venues where new sports betting lounges are opening. In some ways, it’s silly to sort out any legal sports betting age by state, as almost all of them seem to be in agreement on this one point (and only this one point, truth be told).
The caveat here comes when the entirety of a state’s gambling market is tribal in nature, with casinos located totally on sovereign tribal land (i.e. reservations). In these states, there are often added challenges to getting new sports betting laws passed, as the tribes tend to have sweeping exclusivity deals as part of their state compacts. It is conceivable that in such states, where sports wagering is limited to tribal venues, that the sports betting age would be 18, in line with most pari-mutuel and lottery age minimums nationwide.
Legal Sports Betting Age At Online Sportsbooks
The legal sports betting age at online sportsbooks can be different depending on where you live. For example, Rhode Island, Oregon, and New Hampshire only require people who are using online sportsbooks to be 18 years old or older. However, in places such as New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia, you have to be 21 years old or older in order to use legal sports betting sites. A general rule of thumb to follow is to check your state’s casino gambling laws as those are the ones usually used to define the required sports betting age.
When it comes to using online offshore sportsbooks, those sites usually require users to be 18 years old or older. However, if your state’s sports betting laws require bettors to be 21 years old or older than you will have to follow that guideline before using offshore options. This will ensure that you are totally safe when using these sites, otherwise, you may run the risk of running into trouble down the line. These offshore sites take underage gambling very seriously and those that are caught betting as a minor will have their winnings confiscated and their account terminated.
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Betting Age To Bet On College Football
When it comes to betting on your favorite college team, online sportsbooks will have all the games that players would like to choose and bet from. There are plenty of prop bets that you can choose and most of the time these games are close and could turn out to help players win a lot of money. The age requirement is one thing that is very important and when it comes to online sportsbooks, all players have to be is 18 and older to sign up. So as exciting as it is to bet on your favorite college football team, make sure you’re old enough to place big wagers.
Betting Age To Bet On Basketball
With the NBA Season starts just weeks away, knowing the legal NBA betting age in your state is incredibly important. While it varies from state to state, most states requiring bettors to be at least 21 years old or older in order to wager, knowing the legal gambling age is a great way to be fully prepared to go into the NBA season. International sportsbooks operate legally in every state, even those that have yet to regulate legal sports betting in their legislations. With online sportsbooks, you can bet on your favorite NBA team by being at least 18 years old. Underage sports betting is prohibited and bettors who attempt to bet on the NBA while not being old enough could run into some trouble. It is important to know the legal age to bet on the NBA in your state before you try and wager.
Age To Bet On MLB Baseball
All American players must be at least 18 years old to bet on MLB baseball games, while bettors in some states have to be at least 21 years old to bet with state-licensed sportsbooks. With the coronavirus limiting the capability of most brick-and-mortar sportsbooks, most MLB betting will take place online during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. You will be required to provide proof of valid, government-issued ID before you can withdraw winnings from betting on baseball.
The Risk Of Underage Sports Betting
Underage gambling is strictly prohibited, and the act of such can result in real legal troubles. This is why knowing and understanding your state’s gambling laws is incredibly important. If you are caught attempting to bet on sports while under the required betting age by your state, then you run the risk of being permanently banned from the sportsbook, fined by the courts, or legally persecuted. Illegal gambling of any kind can result in misdemeanor or even felony charges. It Is an unnecessary risk to take place in underage gambling as the negatives are life-altering. Waiting until you are in the legal gambling age in your state is the best way to go.
Legal Horse Betting Age
The legal horse betting age is the same as it is for sports betting on the list above. Horse betting is one of the reasons that legal gambling ages exist in the first place, so it is no wonder that they use the same laws as casinos and sportsbooks. Overall, if you are 21 then you can bet on horses and are old enough to bet on sports anywhere in the world. If you are over 18, then you are only old enough to bet on horses in these states.
Alabama – California – Hawaii – Kentucky – Michigan – Montana – Oklahoma – Oregon – Rhode Island – Tennessee – Utah – Vermont – Virginia – Washigton – Wyoming
Why Is There A Minimum Age Limit To Bet On Sports?
When it comes to betting on sports inside of a casino sportsbook, there is often an age restriction because the sportsbook will serve alcohol on the premises. In order for the casino to keep their liquor license and comply with the federal law, everyone in their building must be 21 or older. Certain states, such as Rhode Island, have sportsbooks that accept bettors as young as 18 because the sports betting laws will allow them to. When it comes to betting on sports online most of the sites in the US will set their age restriction according to the state that they are based in. When using on offshore sports betting site, most of them will set their minimum age at 18 because that is the legal age to gamble in the country that they are based in.
How Do I Verify My Age To A Sportsbook?
With both land-based and online sportsbooks, you will need to provide legal documentation that shows you are legally old enough to bet on sports. This can be a standard government-issued ID. It is also a requirement at international sportsbooks, with online sports betting operations requiring ID in order to prevent you from making multiple accounts as well as ensuring they are sending the payments to the correct person. It is not a difficult process to prove your age at sportsbooks and if you are looking to bet on sports you must have documentation proving your age.
Is There An Age Limit To Go Inside Of A Sportsbook?
Yes, and as of right now, almost every legal land-based sportsbook in the US requires anyone trying to enter the venue to be 21 or older. Only Rhode Island, New York, and Montana will allow bettors as young as 18 to enter their sportsbook. Some casinos have their own betting apps or post their odds on their website so you can view lines from there, but in order to physically enter the casino or racino you must meet their age requirement.
Will I Get In Trouble If I Am Sports Betting Underage?
Yes, and the penalties range by state and by the sportsbook. If you are caught betting on sports underage at a land-based sportsbook you could, at the very least, be charged with a misdemeanor, forfeit your winnings, and pay a fine to the state. If you’re caught betting underage through an online offshore sportsbook you will forfeit any winnings in your account and potentially be banned for the site for life.
Where Can I Bet On Sports Under 21?
As of right now, your only land-based options would be in Rhode Island and New York. Once Montana launches their sports betting operations those would become an option as well. The same goes for sports betting in New Hampshire. Oregon will let those 18 years old or older to use the lottery’s mobile sportsbook known as Scoreboard. Some states that are working on sports betting legislation are aiming to set the legal gambling age at 18 as well. We will update you as soon as we have confirmation on which states do so. Online offshore sportsbooks will normally accept members 18 or older, but it is best to comply with the age requirement set by your state. If you take a look at the list above, we have laid out which states you can start online sports betting under the age of 21.
What Is The Legal Age For Horse Betting?
Most states have set the legal age for horse race betting at 18 or older. This includes betting on live races and simulcast races. However, there are a handful of states, such as Arizona, that require pari-mutuel bettors to be 21 or older. There are even some states that say you have to be 19 or older to bet on the ponies, so be sure to check your state laws. Most online racebooks will require their users to be at least 18 or older in order to bet on the races.
Which Online Sportsbooks And Betting Apps Do Not Check Age?
The answer is none, and in the off chance that you do find one that doesn’t check, we suggest that you steer clear of it. Online sportsbooks that do not check age show that they lack the care to abide by their countries laws and could be an outright scam. If you are under the age of 18 or 21 we suggest that you wait and study the industry so that when you become of the legal age in your state you will be well-versed in sports betting and ready to start winning.
What Is The Legal Betting Age At Bovada?
Bovada only requires that users be at least 18 years old, no matter what state they might live in. But, Bovada does not accept any players from Maryland, New Jersey, Delaware, New York or Nevada. Players in all other states should still consult the betting age in their state and know if their age limit is higher. Though it is good to understand your local betting age, there has not been any reports of a single person arrested for underage gambling online. There are, however, consequences for someone who fails to meet minimum betting ages at Bovada or any other online sportsbook.
There’s nothing quite like the rush of playing poker for real cash, but there is always a minimum gambling age involved. It can be really embarrassing to get turned away at the door while your friends go on to have a night of fun playing their hearts (and wallets) out, so doing your homework can really pay off. There is a bit of study required, as the legal gambling age to play poker in each state varies.
At domestic venues, the US legal poker age by state is typically set to a minimum age of 21 years old, but there are some 18 and over poker rooms located across the United States, as this age restriction is not federally mandated. There are also 18+ poker sites that are available to USA players. Below, we detail the minimum gambling ages for regulated domestic poker as well as each state’s age requirements for offshore gambling for real money.
Minimum Age To Play Poker For Real Money In Each State
- Alabama – offshore 18
- Alaska – offshore 18
- Arizona – 21 poker, offshore 18
- Arkansas – offshore 18
- California – 18 poker, offshore 18
- Colorado – 21 poker, offshore 18
- Connecticut – NO POKER (Thumbs down or sad face emoji?)
- Delaware – Poker 18 – Offshore 18
- Washington, D.C. – Offshore 18
- Florida – Poker 18 – Offshore 18
- Georgia – Offshore 18
- Hawaii – Offshore 18
- Idaho – Offshore 18
- Illinois – Poker 21, Offshore 18
- Indiana – 21 poker, offshore 18
- Iowa – 21 poker, offshore 18
- Kansas – 21 poker, offshore 18
- Kentucky – offshore 18
- Louisiana – 21 poker, offshore 18
- Maine – 21 poker, offshore 18
- Maryland - 21 poker, offshore 18
- Massachusetts – poker 21, offshore 18
- Michigan – 18 poker, offshore 18
- Minnesota – 18 poker, offshore 18
- Mississippi – poker 21, offshore 18
- Missouri – 21 poker, offshore 18
- Montana – 18 poker, offshore 18
- Nebraska – offshore 18
- Nevada – poker 21, offshore 18
- New Hampshire – 18 poker, 18 offshore
- New Jersey – 21 poker, 18 offshore
- New Mexico – 21 poker, 18 offshore
- New York – 18 poker, offshore 18
- North Carolina – 21 poker, 18 offshore
- North Dakota – 21 poker, 18 offshore
- Ohio – 21 poker, 18 offshore
- Oklahoma – 18 poker, 18 offshore
- Oregon – 21 poker, 18 offshore
- Pennsylvania – 21 poker, 18 offshore
- Rhode Island – 18 poker, 18 offshore
- South Carolina – 18 offshore
- South Dakota – 18 poker, 18 offshore
- Tennessee – 18 offshore
- Texas – 21 poker, 18 offshore
- Utah – offshore 18
- Vermont – offshore 18
- Virginia – offshore 18
- Washington – 18 poker – NO OFFSHORE
- West Virginia – 21 poker, 18 offshore
- Wisconsin – 18 poker, 18 offshore
- Wyoming – 18 poker, 18 offshore
States Where 18+ Online Poker is Legal - State-Regulated
These states have specifically passed legislation allowing state-regulated poker gambling within their borders:
- New Hampshire
- New York
- Rhode Island
- South Dakota
With the exception of CT and WA, there are no states that legally prohibit players who are 18 years old and up from enjoying online poker games at offshore poker sites. Players in all other states are free to play real money poker as long as they are 18 and over. Here we’ve listed the industry’s leading online poker sites accepting 18+ players, as well as what their current bonus offers are.
|Poker Site||Bonus||Rating/5||USA||Visit Site|
|1||100% Max $500||4.7|
|2||100% Max $1,000||4.3|
|3||125% up to $1,250||4.3|
|3||100% Max $1,000||4.2|
How Are Minimum Ages To Play Poker Determined?
Each state is its own self-governed territory. They each set their own rules and regulations when it comes to poker, both online and off. One of the many considerations for every state includes setting the minimum age for poker play, which usually aligns with its minimum legal gambling age.
Federal gambling laws do not provide a minimum age to play poker for real money. Thus, it is up to each US State to determine the age at which they will allow for real money poker at their domestic rooms or at their online venues (if such are regulated and allowed for by law).
Ages for domestic poker play begin at adulthood, or 18 years old, with most states requiring a legal age minimum of 21. Some US states may offer differing minimum gambling ages depending on the poker room in question. Alcohol sales and whether or not the venue is located on tribal land are usually the determining factors.
Legal Gambling Age In Usa
Why Are There Different Poker Gambling Age Minimums In The Same State?
It would be nice if each state declared a legal minimum poker age requirement that would govern all facilities located under its control. Well, in fact, they do, and land-based commercial poker rooms must adhere to these regulations. So how do facilities located within the same region offer different age minimums for poker players?
Native American lands are sovereign, and the tribal leaders are allowed to operate businesses in these regions (mostly) as they see fit, including the building of exotic casino resorts. Because these lands are sovereign, the local tribal governments can set their legal minimum gambling age limits. There are scenarios across the USA where the state’s minimum poker age is set to 21 while tribal poker rooms allow poker and tournament poker play beginning at just 18 and up.
There are some instances where states allow for 18+ poker play at local gambling venues, but some facilities within that same region require gamblers to be 21 or over. This is almost always due the poker room or card room offering alcohol as one of their many services. Because 21 is the legal drinking age in the US and is set by federal law, many facilities that offer alcohol prohibit 18- through 20-year-old gamblers from entering, simply to avoid any potential operational issues. Many bars and clubs that serve alcohol restrict entry to 21+ customers for the same reason.
Developing 18+ Poker Laws
State legislatures meet annually and have the full capability to alter poker laws within their borders as they so choose, including changing minimum gambling age requirements. Federal legislative bodies also have the ability to impose laws that are enforceable across all territories that the United States governs. Changes can affect the industry positively and negatively, so additional regulation is not always a bad thing.
Offshore poker rooms most often allow 18 and over bettors to be dealt in, but we’ve seen a few that require minimum poker ages of 21 and up. Read through the terms and conditions of your chosen offshore poker gambling site before attempting to become a member.
Legal Gambling Age In Us
Additionally, if your state has a minimum poker age limit of 21 and older defined in its lawbooks, you may wish to err on the side of caution and wait until you’re at least that old before signing up with an online gambling site operating offshore. We’ve never heard of any 18 and up poker players getting in trouble for playing over the Internet in such states, however.
Depending on where you are in the country, the legal minimum poker age to play for real cash at a domestic poker room can be as low as 18 years old. The most common age requirement to enter and play at a poker room is 21 years old. In some US states, there are poker rooms that have different age requirements. This is often tied to whether the establishment offers alcohol as one of its perks.
There are a few states that offer online poker through their domestic casinos, and the legal minimum poker age to play will be the same age that is required at the physical locations they’re partnered with. That legal gambling age varies by region but is typically 21 years old. For those that don’t live in one of the US states where online poker is legal, then an offshore betting site is the best option.
Online poker is typically not legal to play across state borders, but this is a state-by-state matter. There is no federal law that bars the pastime in this way. While the UIGEA law prohibits the electronic transfer of funds across state lines for unauthorized gambling purposes, states that offer domestic online poker (Nevada, Delaware, New Jersey) have agreements allowing for interstate online play.
That said, most all states fail to address offshore poker sites in their lawbooks, allowing for legal play for 18+ gamblers online. Players that have yet to reach adulthood are advised to refrain from playing Internet or in-person poker for real money, as the penalties for playing under the legal minimum gambling age vary from hefty fines to potential jail time.