Is Online Sports Betting Legal in Texas?
Despite a totally enormous sports culture, sports betting isn’t legal in Texas.
Historically, the Lone Star State has maintained a firm stance against gambling in almost all types and though there are indications of a change, Texans shouldn’t hold their breath waiting for lawful sports betting to arrive anytime soon.
But, there are a couple exceptions. While standard sports betting isn’t permitted, websites providing daily dream sports, such as DraftKings and FanDuel are permitted to operate in the nation.
Early in 2019 a state lawmaker filed a brand new Texas sports gambling bill to allow in-person and mobile sports gambling and whether it looks awesome on paper, it faces a couple of huge challenges. More on that in the next section.
In this guide we’ll take a deep dive into Texas sports betting laws to answer:
When are you going to be able to wager on sports legally in Texas?
What’s the brand new Texas sports gambling bill H 1275 about?
How will people in Texas have the ability to bet on sports if it becomes legal?
We’ll also delve into the questions of whether it is lawful to bet on daily fantasy sports (DFS) at Texas and how the state’s enormous professional and college athletics culture will play to the legal sports betting industry we may one day see develop from the Lone Star State.
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Texas Sports Betting Bill Filed Feb 1, 2019 (H 1275)
On February 1, 2019, Rep. Eddie Lucio III registered H 1275, the first sports gambling bill in Texas since the US Supreme Court overturned the decades-old national ban online sports gambling known as PASPA.
We are going to lay out the bill’s most important points in a minute but first let’s go over the key reasons this bill can have difficulty passing.
First of all, it was released by a Democrat and Texas is a staunchly Republican country. Secondly, for the bill to pass, a referendum to amend the state constitution to include sports gambling must be held. The settlement will have to pass with a two-thirds majority in the House and Senate and be approved in a voter referendum. The earliest that may occur is November, 2019.
Here are the bill’s most important features:
Online and mobile sports gambling in Texas will be lawful.
A maximum of five permits will be marketed. Each license will allow two online betting site skins.
Gamblers will pay a 6.25% tax, similar to a sales tax, on all money wagered.
If the resolution and bill to amend the constitution pass, sports gambling will be legal in Texas on January 1, 2020.
The Current Sports Betting Situation at Texas
Estimates indicate billions of dollars of tax revenue could be produced from sports betting legalization which Texas would be the second-biggest sports betting state in the country.
Even without online and mobile gambling, it is projected that Texans will wager $9 billion on sports annually. A 6.25% tax on those sales would equal over $500 million.
The desire to get that potential revenue is butting up against a largely conservative, anti-gambling institution which will result in an interesting dynamic if this bill moves ahead.
A prevailing anti-gambling mindset is not the only hurdle this invoice will have to clean. Since you’ll read below, even if the state wished to legalize sports gambling it’d still need to amend its constitution to allow for gambling on sports.
All sorts of gaming, with the exception of this state lottery and dog and horse racing, is illegal in Texas.
There is but one tribal casino in the whole country and it’s not allowed to offer casino table games, only slots.
The gambling laws are incredibly stiff in the Lone Star State and bookmaking is a Class A misdemeanor.
Despite sports betting being illegal in Texas, the nation’s biggest sports team, the Dallas Cowboys, have agreed to a sponsorship arrangement with WinStar World Casino.
With the deal, the Cowboys became the first NFL team to partner with a casino.
This does not mean legalization is coming shortly to Texas, no matter how the country’s flagship sports company inking a major deal with a casino business is another portion of the puzzle that’s coming together.
Another big element is that Texas’s neighbors including New Mexico, Louisiana, and Oklahoma either have fully fledged legalized sports betting or have bills in motion to legalize it. That means Texans will have considerable chance to take their billions of dollars and bet it out of state.
Texas Betting Laws Summary
Sports betting is currently illegal in Texas.
A sports betting bill was introduced in February of 2019 that could take effect on January 1, 2020.
While sports gambling is illegal, dog and horse racing are lawful. The state lottery has been in existence since 1991.
There’s one tribal casino in Texas, the Kickapoo Lucky Eagle Casino in Eagle Pass to the Mexico border.
Daily fantasy sports gambling is lawful and DraftKings, FanDuel, and Yahoo! all accept players from Texas.
The History of Online Sports Betting at Texas
There is no real sports betting background in Texas. The nation has enforced among the country’s strictest set of anti-gambling laws and it goes way back. Dog and horse racing are all legal in Texas, however gamblers can simply put in-person wagers. OTB gambling is not allowed.
To give the present situation some context, let’s look at the most pivotal moments in Texas’s gaming history:
1933 – Texas implements its first Pari-Mutuel horse race gambling.
1937 – Four years to the country’s foray into lawful horse racing that the tracks are closed down and gaming on the races is prohibited.
1971 – Charity gaming is exempted from anti-gambling laws. Two years after this ruling is overturned after more making it illegal again.
1982 – Licenses for charitable gambling are legally sanctioned. This took an amendment to the state constitution in 1980.
1987 – Pari-mutuel horse track betting return thanks to some favorable effect in a state referendum. Simulcast betting from external racetracks is released in 1991.
1988 – Casino Cruises are available which sanction legal gaming so long as they are in international waters. Vessels depart from the Texas coast. Operations lasted for 20 years before shutting down.
1992 – A referendum passes permitting for a state lottery that includes pulls and scratch-off games.
1996 — 2002: Tribal/state compacts come to a head as bingo halls and casinos on tribal lands are closed and reopened several times. Just one tribal casino remains to date which is possessed by the Kickapoo tribe just south of San Antonio near Mexico.
2013 – Many bills are introduced to expand gaming in the state but do not see the light of day. Plans comprised offering video lottery terminals at racetracks and eight state-licensed casinos.
Which Online Betting Sites Are Legal in Texas?
As of this moment, no online sports betting websites are lawful. Looking at the present sports betting bill, however, it’s apparent that the future of authorized Texas sports gambling will include online and mobile gambling options.
The Lone Star state is unique as it just has one tribal casino, and it is located near the Texas/Mexico border. It is a fantastic bet that this business will attempt to become involved with a land-based sportsbook and an internet gaming program.
Other physical infrastructure so far as casinos is scarce so we anticipate the majority of the action to occur online.
Like we mentioned previously, the WinStar World Casino made an official deal with the Dallas Cowboys which can be an indicator that it’s interested in going into the market.
We also expect based online sports betting sites which are already working in different states to apply for licenses. Including brands like BetStars, 888sport and many more.
If legalization will happen, check this page for expert reviews on all of the best online sportsbooks in Texas.
Which Sports Can You Bet Online in Texas?
Texas is among the most sports crazy states in the entire country, with just two NFL teams, three NBA teams, two MLB teams, two MLS teams, and also an NHL team.
And that does not even tap into their huge collegiate match footprint, together with high ranked teams coming from colleges like Texas, Texas Tech, SMU, Vanderbilt, and Texas A&M.
If and when legal sports betting comes to Texas, gamblers will be able to bet on popular North American sport and nearly anything else found anywhere in the world.
A Normal menu of sports Texans will be able to bet on includes:
Soccer (MLS, Premier League, Champions League, La Liga, International Competitions and more)
The Way to Bet on Sports Legally in Texas
Gambling is presently extremely limited in Texas, with a single land tribal casino in the whole country and no physical sportsbooks.
The sports gambling legislation that’s currently in the works gives us a sign of how things will probably work later on.
In other countries that already allow online sports gambling, the practice of registering for an account, depositing cash and placing legal wagers is actually straightforward.
First browse reviews of all the best online sports betting sites in Texas, find one you like and then sign up for an account. You can usually make an account from anywhere but you must be in Texas to really make bets.
You’ll need to provide some personal information and after your account is set up, you can deposit cash using tons of popular banking options. You may frequently get in on particular welcome bonuses as well as other supplies when you deposit.
When the cash is on your account, just find the game you need to wager on and place your bet.
Are Daily Fantasy Sports Legal in Texas?
Players can place wagers at favorite DFS gaming websites including FanDuel and DraftKings, however there is a small legal grey area in regards to whether it’s actually legal or not.
While the state doesn’t press charges against daily fantasy websites, there were ineffective invoices to fully legalize DFS in the past.
The two FanDuel and DraftKings accept Texas players and the country seems content with letting this play out at a state of legal flux until it completely considers their next steps on sports betting.
In terms of safety, the Fantasy Sports Trade Association and the US Gambling Commission are responsible for many DFS action so at the close of the day, funds on the sites are 100% secure.
What’s the Future of Online Sports Betting at Texas?
While a dark place for legal gambling, Texas’s potential as far as sports betting goes has gotten a bit brighter.
There is still a ways to go but with the debut of a new bill to legalize sports betting we are beginning to see a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel.
Estimates range, but the American Sports Betting Coalition believes legalized sports betting could inject almost $2 billion dollars into the local economy and produce over 9,000 jobs. With Texans already gambling on sports and in other states, new laws may really have a chance of passing.
On the other side of the debate are groups such as the General Baptist Convention of Texas which consists of approximately three million Texans. Not only are they contrary to legal sports betting, they wish to eliminate the whole state lottery.
Rob Kohler is a lobbyist for the Baptist Convention and states the tax on sports gambling will hurt the poorest people in the country the most, like the lottery.
„It’d make a sales tax blush with its regressivity. So, is it smart for us to finance our government together with the folks that we’re giving money to assist? No,” said Kohler.
However, the State lottery did create $1.3 billion in 2017 for the state’s education system. The tax revenue from legal sports gambling will be even bigger.
Questions Remain for Legal Texas Sports Betting
Whether sports betting is finally legalized in Texas depends upon lots of different variables and no one can predict precisely how it’s likely to play out.
Our best guess is that it will happen but it might not be the current sports gambling bill which gets the work done.
But if all goes perfectly and H 1275 passes with an amendment to the state constitution, Texans would have the ability to start gambling on sports legally as early as January 1, 2020.
The sheer size of the potential sector and gains, literally tens of thousands of dollars, is the largest reason we may observe this laws fast-tracked.
In the meantime, sports bettors in Texas can bet on DFS, or make the trip to one of a couple of nearby states which are already legalizing full-on sports betting.
2019 will be a significant year for online sportsbooks in Texas and we’ll post big developments as they happen on this particular page.
Additionally, browse our country by state guides to legal sports betting in the united states for more info on other parts of the country.