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A Good Bet: Your Guide to the States With Legalized Sports Betting

Sports betting. It is an industry that continues to expand and is only projected to become more and more valuable.

The sports betting industry was worth about $131 billion in 2020 and is expected to climb to a value of $179 billion by 2028.

One of the countries that bets on sports the most now is the United States. The country has sports betting legalized on a state-by-state basis.

However, over the years, more states with legalized sports betting have popped up.

So, how many states have legal sports betting? What states are on their way to doing so? And what states have specific restrictions when it comes to sports betting?

This is your guide to understanding the situation for each individual state in the country.

Fully Legal States

For those looking to get into the bookie business, these are some of the most optimal states to get involved with. The 14 states that have full mobile betting AND multiple other options are:

  • Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Louisiana
  • Michigan
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Pennsylvania
  • Virginia
  • West Virginia

New Jersey is the state that has been the face of sports betting since it was the state to bring this issue to the Supreme Court. Before 2018, legal sports betting was limited to Nevada.

However, once the Supreme Court approved this case, New Jersey was one of the first states to dive right into this. Several other states followed over the years, and the 13 other states in this group have done so with very few restrictions.

These are all states that have not only legalized sports betting online but also have retail options available.

One of the newest states to join this club was New York back in January of 2022. They have had limited retail tribal casino sportsbooks for years, but now, the state has fully launched into the mobile world.

Other states are expected to join this group soon, but for now, these 14 are leading the charge for the rest of the country.

In-Person Sportsbooks Only

With the 14 states above reaping the benefits of mobile sports betting, there are others that have legalized sports betting but require bettors to place those bets in physical casinos.

Ten specific states fit into this category. The ten states are:

  • Delaware
  • Maryland
  • Mississippi
  • Montana
  • New Mexico
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • South Dakota
  • Washington
  • Wisconsin

One of the most notable in this group is Delaware. Like New Jersey, it was one of the first states in the country outside of Nevada to legalize sports betting back in 2018.

However, ever since it became legalized, it has been limited to physical casinos, and there does not appear to be any sign that mobile betting would come to the state.

Two of the more interesting states in this group are New Mexico and North Dakota. The reason is that for both states, there is no formal bill legalizing sports betting.

However, tribal casinos in those states have been taking bets assuming it was legal to do so in physical casinos. In the case of North Dakota, there has been a bill proposed to legalize online sports betting, but it fell just short of passing in 2021.

Wisconsin is the newest state to join this group, launching sports betting in tribal casinos in early 2022.

States With Specific Limitations

You have states that are fully legal and those that only allow in-person, but there are several other states that have sports betting partially legalized. However, these come with specific rules or limitations that sportsbooks in these states have to work with.

There are six states (plus D.C.) that fall into this category. The six states are:

  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • Oregon
  • Rhode Island
  • Tennessee
  • Washington D.C.
  • Wyoming

Now, a lot of these states are facing different restrictions. When it comes to Nevada, it arguably has the loosest restrictions on this list.

That is because the state has both mobile and in-person sports betting. The only limitation with this state is that you must sign up for the sportsbook in person rather than doing so online.

Then, Tennessee and Wyoming probably have the next easiest restrictions on this list. That is because both states have plenty of mobile betting options, but neither state has physical casinos that take sports bets.

As for the rest of the states on this list, these are states that have very few mobile betting options. In the cases of Oregon and Rhode Island specifically, these states only offer one sportsbook for mobile bettors to use.

States Pending

There are currently two states that have approved sports betting but are still waiting to launch sportsbooks. These two states are:

  • Ohio
  • Nebraska

Ohio is the state that has stated the most clear timetable goal. They even have it in the bill that the sportsbooks must launch by the beginning of 2023. Ideally, the state is hoping to get the sportsbooks ready to go by late 2022.

As for Nebraska, this state only plans to have in-person sports betting. The state is hoping to have retail sportsbooks ready to launch this by late 2022.

States to Watch

With 32 states plus Washington D.C. above at least partially legalizing sports betting, the question becomes if the other 18 states will get in on the action.

One of the biggest states to watch here is Florida. This state actually had sports betting launched back in late 2021, but with the Seminole Tribe partnering with Hard Rock to launch on mobile apps, the state put this to a halt since they were doing so outside of tribal land.

Now, sports betting has taken a step back in the Sunshine State, and it could leave legalization within the next two years in jeopardy.

Massachusetts is another state to watch because there seems to be some disagreement between state representatives and the Senate. A sports betting bill was passed in this state back in July of 2021, but the Senate shot it down.

Stay Updated With States With Legalized Sports Betting

These are the states with legalized sports betting at the time of writing. More and more states are joining the legalization side by the year, so this list could be updated in the near future.

Do you want the latest updates on sports betting trends? See our Business section.

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