While the majority of gamblers enjoy brick-and-mortar casinos in their local area, many of them also take advantage of iGaming to place wagers on the go. This lucrative industry continues to grow as states pass laws to legalize and regulate it, and a number of them are now accepting real-money online casino games like slots and table games. However, it’s important to understand is online slot gambling legal before you start playing.
The answer is yes, but only in a handful of states. New Jersey became the first state to launch an iGaming marketplace, with players betting money on sports and other events at NJ online casinos in February of 2013. West Virginia followed suit by allowing brick-and-mortar casinos to operate branded iGaming sites in 2023, opening up fifteen fully-legal gambling options in the Mountain State.
Michigan laid the regulatory groundwork for iCasino play in December of 2019, and iGaming went live there in January of 2021. Rhode Island joined the club in June of 2023 after seeing its neighboring Northeastern states roll out their iGaming markets, and Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf voted to approve iCasino games in October of 2017.
All of these states, except for New York and Texas, allow for iGaming at licensed land-based casinos, and they have formed interstate gaming compacts to pool player liquidity. However, the federal Wire Act of 1961 – which was signed before the commercial inception of the internet – prohibits the transfer of money between states to fund illegal gambling activity, including online casinos.
Some states have been hesitant to allow online casino play, with fears that it could lead to gambling addictions and other social ills. But an early wave of lawmakers have pushed back against these concerns, showing that online gambling is not a major threat and can actually benefit the economy in a variety of ways.
While New York is still unable to offer its residents any type of online casino action, there have been several bills introduced in recent years that would change this. And with the success of sports betting in the Empire State, it seems likely that the Big Apple will eventually join the ranks of iGaming states.
Texas, meanwhile, does not have any legalized iGaming options, but there are a growing number of online casino games that can be played for free and using virtual chips. The popularity of these sites has helped to make them more mainstream, and more people are starting to see the benefits of these alternatives to traditional brick-and-mortar casinos. This is especially true for younger generations, who have grown up in a world where these types of social casino games are already wildly popular. Whether you’re looking for a fun way to kill some time or want to win money while doing it, these alternatives are a great choice. They are easy to use and require no installation or registration, making them a good option for anyone. The best thing about these online casino games is that you can play them on your own schedule, without having to wait for the dealer or other patrons to be ready to make a decision or roll.