When Will Online Gambling Be Legal in Massachusetts?

when will online gambling be legal in massachusetts

Massachusetts sports betting began its operations despite not having legal online casinos on January 31st 2023; online operations started operating March 10th of that year due to legislation passed in August by Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) that established regulations for its betting market.

Massachusetts residents were delighted by the launch of sports betting, yet some questions still linger; among these are when real-money online casino gambling will be legal in MA and what its appearance will look like. This article will address these and other issues about Massachusetts’ future in gambling.

Massachusetts offers both licensed and unlicensed offshore sportsbooks; these unregulated sites are unmonitored by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) and can be extremely dangerous to players. Therefore, only use licensed casinos and apps when betting in Massachusetts.

Though Massachusetts does not permit online gambling for real money, several reputable options provide free-to-play games to Bay Staters such as BetMGM, DraftKings, FanDuel and WynnBET Casino. The Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) works to promote responsible gambling through innovative tools like PlayMyWay and GameSense which help players reduce harm from gambling while supporting responsible play. Furthermore, $15-20 million per year goes into their Public Health Trust Fund which supports research, prevention and treatment of problem gambling in Massachusetts.

MGM Springfield, Encore Boston Harbor and Plainridge Park casinos unveiled retail betting locations on Jan 31 and two simulcast facilities at Raynham and Suffolk Downs were made available as pari-mutuel simulcast locations on March 10. In addition, MGC approved 15 online sports betting licenses; eight of which are tied to land-based partners while seven licenses can be freely bid upon competitive bidding processes.

College sports were an essential focus of the legislative process, with its goal being to allow in-state bettors to place wagers on their teams at retail and online sportsbooks at a rate of 24% federal tax, just like other gambling winnings. There are some caveats though; local bettors are only eligible to place bets during tournament games for their home schools.

Esports and virtual gaming are two popular forms of gambling in Massachusetts, having both been approved for regulation through Governor Deval Patrick’s Expanded Gaming Act of 2011. Esports betting has grown increasingly popular across the nation, raising concerns over its social effects and potential link to increases in problem gambling. Regulated online esports betting may not yet be legal in Massachusetts; however, its success could open the way to legal online casino gaming in Massachusetts in the future. Indeed, neighboring Rhode Island recently legalized online casino games which may prompt legislators in Massachusetts to address this issue as well.

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