Is Online Gambling Legal in Mississippi?
States with strong pro-gaming lobbies, like Mississippi, tend to shy away from lotteries, on the theory that people will gamble less if state lottery games are available. Social gambling is not legal in the state of Mississippi.
Since no provision at all is made for the practice of placing wagers in the privacy of a home or business, these games are implicitly illegal. As far as we can tell, no one has ever been charged with a crime related to a home poker game or private wager at work, but we wanted to share the facts about state gaming law, and the fact is, social gambling is not lawful.
Charitable gambling is heavily-restricted in Mississippi, no doubt for the same reason that the state runs no lottery games. Recognized charitable groups in Mississippi are allowed to host bingo games as fundraisers — and only bingo games. No raffles, giveaways, casino night games, or other fundraisers are allowed.
Even these bingo games are heavily-restricted, with limits on how much can be rewarded in prize money and how many games per year a charitable group can host. As far as we can tell, online gambling is illegal in the state of Mississippi. Instead, online gambling is implicitly illegal — meaning the law implies that the practice is unlawful without coming right out and saying so.
The most obvious way that online gambling is explicitly illegal is the fact that it is unregulated. Remember — in Mississippi as in much of the United States , unregulated games are by definition illegal.
We think Mississippi may be able to accuse an online gambler of committing the crime of using an illegal device. Our favorite laws to try to apply to the practice of online gambling are found in state regulations governing the use of illegal gambling devices. This charge has been used in some US states to prosecute gamblers when no other charge existed to cover the game they were playing. While this law is hilarious for its antiquated language and opinion of popular gambling games, we think it could still be used by an overzealous law enforcement agency to refer to any smart phone, tablet, or computer used to place an online wager.
But we also want to point out that Mississippi has never charged anyone with a crime for placing a bet over the Internet. Because Mississippi law includes an explicit description of what legal gambling looks like, our best interpretation of that law says that all forms of online betting are technically illegal in the state. That means your online gambling options in Mississippi are extremely limited.
Pay attention to recent amendments to charitable bingo law, especially if you plan on hosting or participating in charitable bingo in Mississippi. Included on this page are links to other state-produced FAQs, some on related topics. This page was infinitely useful to us as we prepared and researched this article, since legislative changes can be tough to track and confirm.
A second offense requires an identical charge. A third offense is a low-grade felony. It is legal, under the right conditions, to own a slot machine or other gambling machine. Our research turned up no examples of a person in Mississippi being arrested or charged with any crime related to the act of placing an online wager.
Mississippi citizens have been calling for a state lottery system and the right to participate in multi-state lotteries for years. Mississippi is a hotbed of casino gambling, with tourists travelling to the area from all over the country to visit the dozens of casinos and resorts that have popped up since Though the state is deeply conservative, with legal precedent and traditions regarding gambling going back more than a century, when it comes to regulating games of chance and skill, the state is progressive.
Legal Horse Racing Betting: Not Legal Dog Racing Betting: Legal Daily Fantasy Sports: Not Specified Charitable Gaming: SBTech plans further expansion. Penn National announced Thursday that it will commence sports betting at five Mississippi properties starting Friday.
Sports betting is one of many legal forms of gambling legalized by Mississippi. The state has a long-standing reputation for gambling, dating back to the founding of the country. Before Mississippi was even created, settlers and Native Americans were engaging in card games and betting on horse races and other sports. The Gulf Coast eventually emerged as a destination for music, food, sports and gambling. The state formalized its gambling industry in with the passage of the Mississippi Gaming Control Act , which allowed riverboat casinos in coastal counties.
The first casino opened two years later, floating down the river from Iowa to its permanent home in Mississippi. Gambling breathed new life into the region before Hurricane Katrina came to town in The superstorm brought ruin to Biloxi and Gulfport , damaging or destroying nearly every casino along the shore.
With owners vowing to rebuild their properties, the law was changed to allow them to move onshore within feet of the water in the hopes of avoiding a repeat disaster. Gambling is limited to water- and land-based casinos in Mississippi, and that restriction extends to sports betting, too.
Any current gaming license holder can apply to offer sports betting. There are around 30 of them in the state. As written, current laws limit gambling to those physically present in a licensed casino. Electronic sports betting is permitted, but only if conducted on-site. No mobile or online wagering can take place off the grounds of a casino. After a day review period, those regulations went into effect and licensed gaming operators began applying to offer sports betting.
Regulators spent the next few weeks preparing for the launch of sports betting and MGM won the race to come to market. Beau Rivage and Gold Strike accepted the first sports wagers in Mississippi history on August 1, In , Mississippi legalized daily fantasy sports.
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