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Illinois Poker Laws: Everthing You Need to Know

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If you are interested in playing poker in Illinois, then you need to know about the Illinois Poker Laws. This article will discuss the current laws and regulations surrounding poker in Illinois. We will also provide information on where you can play poker in Illinois.

So, if you’re ready to learn more about Illinois Poker Laws, keep reading!

Where to Play Online Poker in Illinois

Looking to play poker in Illinois? Check out our list of the best Illinois poker sites!

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  • Great gaming library
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Is Online Gambling Illegal In Illinois?

When it comes to online gambling, Illinois residents have had a tough time finding legal options. The state has yet to pass any laws regulating online gambling, so most online casinos do not accept players from Illinois.

This leaves residents with few options if they want to gamble online. However, there is some hope on the horizon. A new bill (SB-0007) has been introduced that would potentially allow for state-sanctioned online casino games in Illinois.

This would provide a much-needed legal option for residents who want to gamble online. However, the bill is still in the early stages, and nothing is set in stone yet. So, for now, residents will have to wait and see what happens.

Illinois Poker and Gambling Laws

future of online poker in illinois

Illinois poker laws are some of the most comprehensive in the United States. Gambling is legal in Illinois, but there are a number of restrictions in place.

For example, Illinois poker laws only allow for riverboat gambling. This means that casinos can only operate on boats that are floating on rivers.

There are also a number of other restrictions, such as the maximum bet that can be placed and the types of games that can be offered.

However, these restrictions have not stopped Illinois from becoming one of the most popular gambling destinations in the country.

Every year, millions of dollars are wagered on riverboat casinos, and many people travel to Illinois specifically to gamble. If you’re looking to bet in Illinois, you’ll find that there are plenty of options available to you.

A Detailed Look at Illinois Gambling Law

The law in the State of Illinois as it relates to gambling is quite clear. In some states, whether or not the present law applies to playing poker, or in particular, playing poker online may be subject to at least some interpretation, however the law of Illinois speaks very plainly on the subject:

Section 28-1. Gambling

(a) A person commits gambling when he or she:

  1. knowingly plays a game of chance or skill for money or other thing of value, unless excepted in subsection (b) of this section;
  2. knowingly makes a wager upon the result of any game, contest, or any political nomination, appointment, or election” (1)

So subsection (1) would be the one that applies to poker, including online poker, as if you reside in Illinois and you are playing online poker for money then you are clearly playing a game for money.

What about the exceptions contained in subsection (b)? Well the list is a rather long one, but none of it includes playing poker unless it is at a charitable event or is specifically sanctioned by the state, which would exclude all forms of online poker since online poker is not currently sanctioned and regulated.

So basically, if the State of Illinois does not approve it specifically, it is illegal under state law, which applies to all forms of unauthorized gambling, not just poker.

I have read some people say that while state law does prohibit the setting up of gambling sites on the internet, it doesn’t specifically address whether playing on such internet gambling sites would be illegal.

However, given that any gambling in Illinois that is not officially sanctioned is illegal, and gambling online surely consists of gambling, and this is definitely not state-sanctioned, then it is very clearly not legal at all.

As is the case in other states though, just because playing online poker is against the law, this does not stop a lot of people from doing it, and they don’t worry about this as long as the law isn’t being enforced, and it’s not being enforced in any state right now, including in Illinois.

 

Illinois Gambling Law Resources

Short History of Gambling in Illinois

gambling in illinois

In 1927, the Illinois General Assembly legalized pari-mutuel horse racing for the first time. This was part of a flourishing horse racing scene at places like Arlington Park, now owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated.

In 1974, the Illinois State Lottery was one of the first states in the country to create a state-run lottery game, generating about $3 billion in yearly revenue. The Horse Racing Act of 1975 gave greater regulation and supervision to the sector.

It is one of the first states to get involved in riverboat gambling, with casinos in Illinois authorized in 1990 owing to a technicality. This was standard practice until a 1999 clause allowed the boats to operate as riverboat casinos while docked.

The Video Gaming Act of 1999 permitted the placement of gaming machines at establishments with liquor licenses, such as clubs, truck stops, and bars. In 2012, Illinois began to offer legal internet lottery play.

Finally, the Illinois legislature legalized sports betting in 2019. The bill did not extend online casinos or gambling to Illinois, but it did legalize sports betting at licensed land-based bookies.

The Future of Gambling in Illinoi

Gambling has been a controversial issue in Illinois for many years. Currently, the state has a number of laws that regulate gambling activities. For example, Illinois poker laws are some of the most restrictive in the country. As a result, many people living in Illinois have turned to online gambling sites to satisfy their gambling needs.

However, the future of gambling in Illinois is uncertain. Recently, there have been several attempts to legalize casino gambling in the state. If these efforts are successful, it is likely that other forms of gambling will be legalized as well. This could have a significant impact on the way that people gamble in Illinois.

Only time will tell what the future of gambling in Illinois will be. However, one thing is for sure: gambling is an activity that is here to stay. Whether it is done in casinos or online, gambling will continue to be popular among Illinois residents.

 

Final Thoughts

If you’re looking to gamble in Illinois, you have a few different options. You may dress up and go to a nearby riverboat casino or attempt your luck at one of the many offshore online gambling sites specifically for Illinois residents.

While both options have their merits, we think that online gambling is the way to go. You can access a lot more games and worldwide sportsbooks, as well as all of it from the comfort of your own home.

So why not give it a try? You may be pleasantly surprised at how much fun you have.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Gamble Online in Illinois? Yes, you can gamble online in Illinois only by playing at an offshore gambling site. There are no licensed online poker or casinos in the state, so players must resort to playing at an offshore site.
What Other Gambling is Legal in Illinois?

The state of Illinois is one of the more gambling-friendly states in the Midwest. So long as the gaming is provided by an authorized body or played at an offshore site online, all sorts of casino gambling are legal in Illinois.

Residents can enjoy poker, blackjack, slots, and other table games at land-based casinos. Horse racing bets and online sports betting are also legal, but dog racing is illegal in Illinois.

Can You Gamble in Illinois Right Now?

You can head to one of the ten land-based casinos or gamble online at one of the many offshore casino websites. The minimum gambling age in Illinois is 21, so as long as you are of legal age, you can enjoy all sorts of gambling activities.

Whether you want to learn about the state’s gambling laws or just enjoy some slots, you’ll be able to discover whatever you need in Illinois.

What is the Legal Age to Gamble Online in Illinois?

Gambling laws in Illinois are a bit convoluted, but the bottom line is that you can gamble online at 18 – but only on lottery games provided by the Illinois State Lottery.

You can enter Mega Millions, Lotto, and Powerball games, but that’s it as far as gambling goes in the state.

About the Author

Sadonna Price
Author Sadonna is a mom of two and an avid poker player who also enjoys online casino games. She has been part of the online gambling industry for over a decade, working as a news and blog writer. Sadonna still plays Texas hold’em in her free time while her daily job revolves around providing insights into the online gambling world using her creativity and writing skills.
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