Whether or not online gambling is legal in your jurisdiction depends on where you live. The laws surrounding this type of gaming are governed by state and federal laws. It is important to understand which statutes apply to your jurisdiction before you decide to operate an online gambling business. Some of the statutes are criminal in nature and others are meant to keep illegal activities at bay.
The most important statute in this case is the Wire Act, which prohibits gambling on contests or sporting events. Although this statute is primarily enforced at the state level, it has been used to bring cases in the federal courts. Another statute that is related to internet gambling is the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA), which is the law that makes it illegal to receive bets or accept financial instruments in connection with illegal Internet gambling. The law has been the subject of a number of legal challenges, with questions raised about the legislative power of the Commerce Clause and the First Amendment.
There are many other laws that affect online gambling in the United States. Some of these include the Unlawful Internet Gambling and Wire Acts, the Wire Act, the Gambling and Wagering Tax Act, and the Illegal Gambling Business Act. In addition to these laws, the Federal Communications Commission also has the authority to regulate broadband and wireless internet providers. The FCC has the power to shut down facilities and discontinue leasing them. In addition, the agency has the power to regulate common carriers such as cable companies and telephone companies.
The CRS Report RS21984 is an abridged version of the report RS22749. It is the best source for information on all aspects of this legislation. It includes a brief description of the statutes it cites and their text. The report also contains citations to state gambling laws and other pertinent facts. The CRS Report RS21984 may be the best guide to what is legally available on the web.
While the UIGF Act does not mention the obvious, the statute does have the following notable features: a prohibition against accepting bets in connection with illegal Internet gambling; a prohibition against accepting financial instruments in connection with illegal Internet gambling; an age verification requirement for those who access the Internet to place bets; and a statutory definition of illegal Internet gambling.
The same statutes mentioned in the RS21984 report are cited in the CRS Report RS22749. The statutes cited in both are the same, except that the CRS Report RS22749 is a little more detailed, which is to say that it is easier to read. The report is also much better at providing an explanation of each statute, which can be difficult to find in the text.
While the RS21984 and the CRS Report RS22749 are certainly worth a look, they do not cover all of the major issues pertaining to online gambling in the United States. This is due to the fact that each state has its own attitudes about this matter.