Legal Online Casinos & Online Gambling
Online casinos are legal in most parts of the world. Many world governments have written laws specifically addressing the legalities of online gambling; others like the United States depend heavily on state law and an existing legal vacuum to keep online gambling in check. The legality of an online casino has something to do with that casino’s proper operations and something to do with the legality of online gambling where you live. Finding legal online casinos isn’t hard, you just have to know what you’re looking for and shop around a little.
Comparing legal online casinos is a matter of first finding out if casino gambling online is legal where you live, then doing a little bit of work browsing online casino sites and comparing their features.
How to Find Legal Online Casinos
If you’re shopping around for a legal online casino, a place to play online slots or casino table games, there are a few things to consider. Your first concern should be finding a legitimate casino that operates legally and pays out winnings fairly. Once you’ve found a few legal online casinos, other factors become important. Here are two questions that should help you find a good legal online casino.
Does this casino have a good reputation?
You don’t have to ask yourself this question with some of the bigger names in the online gaming industry. A big casino gambling site like Bet365 or Betsson that has been accepting wagers since long before they launched a website, is obviously a legitimate business, sometimes even a household name.
If an online casino is operated by a publicly-traded company, displays valid gaming licenses prominently on their website, and does not bring up a ton of red flags when you Google the name, it is probably a site with a good reputation.
Not all casino sites have the same experience in the casino business, and you’ll need to test their reputation on your own. Again, browsing around the website and reading online reviews should tell you enough to know if the site is legit or not. You want to see gaming licenses and auditing certificates posted prominently on the site along with an active customer service department. Online casino gambling forums are also good sources for information about fraudulent or illegal online casinos.
Does this casino accept wagers from citizens of my country?
Remember that online gaming laws vary from country to country and region to region. The result is that not every online casino is able to do business with people from all over the planet. Depending on the gambling laws in the country where you live, you may find a number of sites that simply don’t offer gambling to people from your country.
The best example of this comes to us from North America; people living in the USA and Canada have had the doors of many online casinos shut in their faces, thanks to tighter regulation of online gambling and rumors of future legislation against online casinos operating in the US or Canada. To find out if players from your country are restricted, check the site’s FAQ page or contact customer service.
Are All Online Casinos Legal?
Unfortunately, there’s no easy answer to this question. Federal and local laws exist all over the world that restrict online casino gambling, while other governments explicitly state that online casino gambling is legal; some even tax and regulate online casino play to raise revenue. The worldwide legal status of online gambling is too much to take all at once, so concentrate instead on gambling laws where you live.
To figure out if there are laws against online gambling in your country, state, or region, you’ll need to spend a little time researching. It doesn’t matter where you get information about the legality of gambling online, just that the information is accurate. A few websites have popped up directly addressing the legality of online gambling in different parts of the world, and the best of these provide sources for their information.
Sometimes you’ll luck out and find out about the legal status of gambling where you live through a gambling website. Try to access an online casino site from a restricted country and you’re likely to see a pop-up explaining that citizens of your country aren’t allowed to gamble for real money at that particular site. Restricted access to online casinos is not always due to laws against online gambling; American gamblers are shut out of many online casinos because the casino chose to avoid future legal problems, fearing new laws in America to make online gambling illegal. It’s confusing, but any industry that does business with hundreds of different countries and legal traditions is bound to be confusing. If you live in the United States, you might be interested in our laws section, which reviews the current legal status of gambling within each state. This includes Colorado, Hawaii, New Jersey, Delaware, Nebraska, and New Hampshire – among others.
If all else fails and you’re still not sure if online casino gambling is legal in your area, your best bet is to consult a legal professional. If you can’t figure out from other sources if there are laws against playing at online casino sites, it’s best to avoid potential legal troubles by talking to a lawyer.
A final tip when hunting down legal online casinos: contact a casino’s customer service department and ask them all your legal questions. Online casinos make customer service available for a reason: they want to answer your questions about the casino’s website site, help you with banking or gameplay problems, and assist potential customers in figuring out if their casino is a good fit. Any decent online casino site will post contact information clearly, usually under a tab like “Contact Us.”
If the online casino you’re researching has a live chat program, where you use something similar to an instant messenger service to talk to customer support staff, you’re in luck. Talking to customer service about the legality of the site for people in your country using live chat is the fastest and easiest way to get an answer to your question. Talking to a casino site’s customer service team gives you the chance to find out if your country is restricted and to ask any other questions you have. Use this opportunity to test the services offered, including how long you have to wait for an answer and the amount of knowledge the support staff has. A good customer service staff at your online casino is invaluable.