Is sports betting online legal ?


     Legality of sports betting is one issue that does not have a straightforward answer. Online sports betting is a form of online gambling, a term coined for gambling over the internet where fixed-odds gambling is offered over the internet on the results of sporting events. Every country has its own rules and laws concerned with the legality of online sports betting.

       Sports betting is usually managed through online bookmakers or bookies. There are various forms of bets or wagers offered by bookmakers including money-line bet, point spread wager, square, proposition bets, parlays, goal line bets and future wagers. This form of online gambling is influencing almost every sport on the globe including soccer, cricket, hockey, boxing, golf, American football, baseball and even basketball.

       As per the United States federal law, the legality of sports betting is at the discretion of individual states. However, all the existing laws on gambling are limited to general gambling but are partially applicable to online activities. The only law that addresses the issue of online sports gambling in the U.S. is the Wire Wager Act. As per this legislation, use of any form of wire communication and transmission network for the purpose of placing bets or wagers on any sports event or content, thereby influencing the result is illegal. Any American individual or firm found guilty under this law could be fined or imprisoned for a maximum term of 2 years. Only three states in United States have an exclusive law that defines the legality related to online sports betting. These states include Nevada, California and Louisiana.

      Wire Wager Act does not address the problem of offshore online sports betting. These offshore online sports bookies operate from other countries such as Antigua and accept wagers from Americans. It is very difficult to legally prosecute these offshore betting services as they operate under the laws of a foreign government.

Is sports betting online legal ?





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