Regulated Sports Betting - A Guide To Understanding Online Sports Betting Regulation And What Sportsbook Options Are Legally Available

Online sports betting is one gambling venue which has not been able to gain legal traction here in the US. Following an extremely successful launch of their new online gambling platform, New Jersey has recently attempted to pass legislation in their state legalizing sports betting online, however they have thus far been shot down by the courts. There are land based sports books in the major gambling regions which allow betting on sports, but by and large it is frowned upon by the government and faces strong opposition by professional and collegiate sports leagues such as the NFL, NBA and NCAA. That being said, you're not going to find any type of state regulated sportsbook options anytime soon in the US.

Where can I find reputable and regulated online sports betting opportunities?

Legal and licensed online sportsbooks are available for both USA and international players. We have taken the industry's leading brands and put them through our review process to determine their quality, legitimacy and value to the industry. The ones which met or exceeded our stringent standards are included in this guide. We have made a notation by each one that is USA friendly, and have included their current welcome bonus information so that you can perform an initial comparison at a glance. We highly encourage you to only consider brands which are verified to be regulated sports betting sites that are subject to strict regulatory oversight. All of the sites listed below fall into this category. By limiting your sports wagering participation to sites which are government regulated, you are ensuing that you only access the safest and most trusted options possible. Should you consider betting at a non-regulated sportsbook, you are opening yourself up to significant risks of identity theft and other cyber crimes which could directly impact a thief's access to your money and personal information, as well as the risk of simply being swindled by an undesirable online gambling destination. Government regulatory oversight can keep the wagering environment safe and secure for you.

Most Trusted Regulated Online Sportsbooks Legally Operating Within the Industry

Bovada Sportsbook Is Regulated In Kahnawake

Is online sports betting legal in the United States?

There are several select destinations in the United States that are permitted by law to offer sportsbook wagering from brick and mortar sportsbooks or retail locations. Other than those exempted locations, US based sports betting online and offline is prohibited. US sports bettors are not without options however, as several legally licensed offshore sportsbooks have stepped in to fill that void without violating any US federal gambling laws. Learn more on our page dedicated to providing insight into US sports betting laws.

Do US players have access to legal sports betting sites?

Although there are no US based legal online sportsbooks at this time, American players do have access to legally licensed and certified online sports betting sites which are located, licensed and regulated outside of the United States. These websites have been providing their services to USA players for years, and I personally am a registered bettor at several of them. There are no federal laws which prohibit players from participating in legitimate and legal offshore internet sports wagering businesses that are subject to genuine regulatory oversight. This means that I can legally participate in regulated online sports betting as long as I'm conscientious about ensuring the site is operating legitimately within the industry. This is for my own benefit as well as regulated sports betting sites are the only really safe options as they are subject to stringent government oversight and accountable for maintaining a specific level of integrity and service. Naturally these are the types of sports books you want to visit.

Why isn't state regulated online sports betting available in the US?

The DOJ has taken a strong stance regarding the Federal Wire Act, interpreting the law as prohibiting the operation of sports betting in general except for those areas which were grandfathered in as an exception, such as Nevada and a few other states. The DOJ's interpretation is arguable as it is believed by many that the original intent of the law was to specifically gain access to mob run illegal gambling operations which were rampant at the time the law was passed. Opponents also argue that the Internet was not yet invented; hence the law was not specifically attempting to outlaw anything related to betting on sports online. The Federal Wire Act is the basis by which New Jersey has been denied the opportunity to offer state regulated sports betting to its residents and visitors. While the DOJ's statement is controversial, it is still the law of the land at this time.

Are online sports betting sites located outside of the US safe?

While we cannot speak for every operation out there, we can speak for those brands listed below which we endorse. Before an online sportsbook brand lands on this page, it is placed through an intense review process, and the very first thing we do in this process is verify a site's legitimacy concerning their licensing and compliance certifications. After all, if those components are not in place, we do not consider them for inclusion in our guide. We don't just politely ask them if they are legally licensed, we obtain documentation and then we verify the authenticity of that documentation with the government entity which issued the licenses. Once we verify this information, we move on to evaluate their security profile to ensure that they have well exceeded licensing requirements and industry standards to offer a wagering environment that effectively protects bettors and their sensitive data. We only endorse the most reputable and trustworthy brands which are subject to unannounced compliance certification auditing on a regular basis. So the brands you see here are very safe and will always protect your identity and your money.

Do legally licensed online sports betting sites offer bonuses and incentives to their bettors?

The online gambling industry is highly competitive, and each brand is clamoring to get your attention and get you to visit. They are well aware that free money is one of the best methods for achieving this. Each of the brands you see in the table below offers new players a welcome bonus, which is usually formatted as a deposit match bonus. They also offer existing players reload bonuses and special seasonal promotions and contests to participate in. In the special offers, bettors are often awarded free money and sometimes additional prize packages. I participate in sports betting online several times a week, and the sportsbook I frequent the most sends me emails with additional bonus offers in it regularly so that there is some type of free offer nearly every time I visit. These bonuses often have wagering requirements attached to them, and we have examined the offers at the brands below to ensure that their terms are fair and reasonable.

Are the betting lines, odds and pay lines competitive at online sportsbooks?

One of the critical elements of our review process includes comparing the betting lines, odds and paylines offered at each brand to ensure they line up with industry standards and are competitive with other online sportsbooks and the land based brick and mortar sports betting destinations. We have found that the Internet based sports books and their offerings are highly competitive with and comparable to each other and the land based sports wagering options. We advise that you open multiple accounts so that you always have the opportunity to shop lines from site to site and take advantage of the most favorable situations. Line shopping is a very effective strategy when attempting to access the best possible odds and paylines.

What sports and events are covered at internet sports betting sites?

In the majority of cases, the range of betting lines at Internet sportsbooks far exceeds those available at physical sports betting options, usually covering all major sports and collegiate leagues, such as football, basketball, baseball, soccer, hockey, tennis, golf, Nascar, mixed martial arts, rugby, cricket, and many others, as well as a number of minor leagues, European leagues, and even some entertainment reality shows and competitions, current events, celebrity gossip and politics. This type of menu provides something for the players who enjoy betting, but are not necessarily sports fans. Along with your standard wagering options, you will also have access to 'props' bets, which are supplemental wagers created on teams and/or players that involve individual components of a game or match. One example would be a prop bet that has you wager on how many points will be scored in the first 10 minutes of the game, which team will suffer the first interception, or how many times a famous player's girlfriend will be seen on camera. These bets are fun and can add some extra excitement during a game.

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