Online Gambling in Colorado

Colorado Daily Fantasy

Instead of treading water on the issue, Colorado seized the initiative in 2016 and officially legalized daily fantasy sports betting. As per the rules, daily fantasy in Colorado allows players to speculate on all sports except college events. In the wake of the 2016 legislation, FanDuel released a statement praising the move. FanDuel, DraftKings and other popular sites are all legal and available.

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Gambling in Colorado

As with multiple industries and innovations over the last century, Colorado historically had a liberal attitude toward gambling. Before there was regulation, gambling in Colorado was thriving. Thanks to the Gold Rush, money and people poured into the region. Looking to capitalize on this, entrepreneurs opened Brown’s Saloon in 1822.

Although the venue eventually closed, it managed to operate fairly unimpeded for many years despite the lack of regulation. Fortunately, future gambling establishments didn’t have to worry about law enforcement officers kicking down the door. Thanks to legal changes in 1991, almost all forms of live betting are permitted in Colorado.

The one black mark against the state is that Colorado online gambling sites are banned. In fact, in contrast to its generally liberal attitude, Colorado is tough on the virtual industry. As per the statutes, the block on Colorado online casinos, poker rooms and sportsbooks is backed by a clause that punishes anyone active in the gaming industry for working with internet betting sites.

Timeline of Gambling Legislation in Colorado

As a general rule, Colorado gambling laws permit the following: pari-mutuel betting on horse racing and greyhound racing, lottery gaming, social gaming and casinos. However, as you’ll see from the timeline below, gambling legislation didn’t gain serious momentum until the 1980s.

Online Casino Gambling in Colorado

Colorado is a liberal state, as shown by its timeline of gambling laws. However, Colorado online casinos are still illegal. Fortunately, if you can rely on any state to move with the times, it’s this one. Although it’s not clear exactly when or if things will change, online casinos in Colorado are far from a longshot.

Colorado Poker Online

Under the state’s legal framework, poker games and tournaments are permitted as long as they fall under the definition of “social gaming.” This basically means that people can play whatever they want as long as it’s for small stakes and they have a social relationship. Based on this, it’s not a stretch to say that online poker in Colorado could happen in the coming years, though it's not legal now.

Sports Betting in Colorado

The 2018 repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) could signal the start of Colorado sports betting. Although there aren’t any active bills at the moment, the Denver Post has already written about the possibility for future change and the state's attorney general has ruled a sports betting bill wouldn't require a constitutional amendment. Given the more progressive attitudes in the state we may see sports betting in Colorado within the next few years.


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