Online Gambling in Illinois

Illinois Daily Fantasy Betting

As it stands, leading fantasy sites like FanDuel and DraftKings are opperating, though the technical legality questions are still up in the air. Officials have considered formal regulation, but nothing has materialized as of yet. Therefore, at this stage, truly lawful Illinois daily fantasy sports betting is up in the air, but players can feel free to play without risk.

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Gambling in Illinois

Although you won’t find online gambling in Illinois just yet, the state is certainly one of the more liberal ones when it comes to betting. In simple terms, Illinois gambling laws allow casino gaming on riverboats, lotteries, pari-mutuel betting on horses and bingo. In fact, as you’ll see from the timeline below, Illinois has been one of the more progressive US states in recent years when it comes to gambling. Although this attitude hasn’t yet led to Illinois online gambling, innovations such as the Video Gaming Act of 2009 have made betting more accessible to casual gamers.

However, unlike New Jersey, Delaware, Nevada and Pennsylvania, betting fans can’t access online casinos in Illinois. However, given the evolution of gambling within the state over the last 100 years or so, the likelihood is that things will change. Indeed, with the 2018 repeal of the Professional And Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) giving all states the right to consider laws of their own, we may soon see online sports betting, among other things, in Illinois.

Timeline of Gambling Legislation in Illinois

Online Casino Gambling in Illinois

Despite the fact you can play in 10 riverboat casinos across the state, online casinos in Illinois are not yet a reality. Although there isn’t an official timeline for any legislative changes, there’s hope that things could change in the future. Indeed, with online lottery betting proving a success, regulators may soon be persuaded to change the law and allow Illinois online casinos to go live.

Illinois Poker Online

In the traditional sense, online poker in Illinois doesn’t exist. Unlike New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware where you can bet and bluff like the pros, Illinois online poker is more of a social affair. In practice, this means you can access a free-play site that offers sweepstake poker. Instead of playing for real money, you can buy tokens and use them to bet. The legality of sweepstake poker is unclear as you’re not playing for real money, but it’s technically not a sweepstake. Either way, there are no legal avenues to play for money currently.

Sports Betting in Illinois

As we’ve said, a sports betting bill almost got over the line in early 2018. On that occasion, it wasn’t to be. However, there’s no doubt that something will happen in the future. When the inevitable happens, live and online sports betting in Illinois is likely to become a reality.


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