Where is Fantasy Sports Legal? A Comprehensive Guide

Daily fantasy sports sites have become increasingly popular in recent years; however their legality varies from state to state. Learn more about where daily fantasy sports is legal in this comprehensive guide.

Where is Fantasy Sports Legal? A Comprehensive Guide

Daily fantasy sports sites have become increasingly popular in recent years, and the legality of these sites varies from state to state. Federal law specifically exempts fantasy sports contests from the prohibitions of the Illegal Application of Internet Gambling Act (UIGEA). At the state level, legislation and regulation vary from state to state. In recent years, many state legislatures have passed laws that confirm and clarify the legality of Daily Fantasy Sports contests.

DraftKings is a global sports and entertainment technology company whose daily fantasy sports contests are governed by federal and state law. As laws change or regulations are implemented, DraftKings will take steps to ensure their continued compliance, and changes may occur on this site to reflect any new laws or regulations. Daily fantasy sports (DFS) is a rapidly growing subcategory of fantasy sports. Several companies, such as DraftKings, now organize DFS contests and tournaments where participants can win money.

So where is DFS legal? DFS is fairly new, so a lot of things are changing and changing, such as the introduction of DFS for esports. Its youth, together with the fact that it takes elements from sports betting and gambling, has made DFS illegal in some countries. Whether people can legally participate in it often depends on where they are located. The answer to where DFS is legal in different countries is a bit complicated.

Unlike the United States, most DFS games in the rest of the world are aimed at soccer. The countries that allow daily fantasy sports also differ, as each has different sets of laws that regulate them to varying degrees. There are many European countries where DFS is legal, such as the United Kingdom, Croatia, Greece, Poland and more. Some European countries that haven't done so include Switzerland, Ukraine, Belarus and Macedonia.

It should be noted that countries outside the United States may not allow the use of US sites such as DraftKings, as some have their own domestic services. In the United States, DraftKings is legal in 43 states. DraftKings has increased its operations significantly lately, expanding access to its bookmaker to 13 more states two years ago. Now, even though it's legal in 43 states, that doesn't mean things are going perfectly well.

Some states that allow daily fantasy sports, such as New York, have had legal controversies with the DFS in the past that have left the picture a bit murky. The seven states that have banned DraftKings DFS services are Washington, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Hawaii, Arizona and Louisiana. Of the seven, the strictest on DFS are Arizona, Washington, Idaho and Hawaii. The other three have interesting situations.

Nevada considered DFS to be a form of gambling and prohibited companies from operating without a license. As expected, this shut down all DFS sites including DraftKings. Louisiana is the most likely of the states that have banned the DFS from changing its stance; in fact it could be said that it already has many parishes that have pressed for its legalization. Now it's just a matter of establishing additional regulations before sites like DraftKings can reach the state.

The debate over whether or not DFS should be considered a sport game is still active and it is likely that there will be no consensus in the short term. Even so there's no denying the momentum of the DFS and while its possible classification as a sports game may change things; the DFS will continue to move forward with more states and countries legalizing it over time. Companies like DraftKings have made some changes to make DFS more favorable in the eyes of the law; such as adding legal sports bookmakers by DraftKings to its fantasy services which has allowed them to expand their services and capabilities; this should further legitimate the DFS.

Célia Leaverton
Célia Leaverton

Incurable burrito practitioner. Subtly charming tv scholar. Award-winning beer lover. Freelance music practitioner. Typical food scholar.

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