Is Betting Online Legal?

In the United States, the legality of betting online and gambling appear as a complicated issue. Until now, there are some disagreements with what the law says and until these issues are still not cleared, the whole scenario is always a bit cloudy. To have a better understanding about the legality issues, this article will look back at the history of anti-gambling laws.

The Interstate Wire Act of 1961

For a couple of years, the residents of the United States have argued the legality of betting online because of the Interstate Wire Act of 1996. This law is about the prohibition of sports gambling through the use of telephone and other wire-containing devices. However, this law was created when the Internet was not invented, for this reason, many legal experts are questioning if it talks about the Internet or not.

The Justice Department sees it differently and claimed that this Act is related to Internet gambling and all its various forms.

The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006

Before the Congress took a recess in 2006, they passed an act called SAFE Port Act. This was written for the increased security of the ports in the US but there is an additional attachment called the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act. This act prohibits all Americans from using checks, credit cards or electronic fund transfer to finance gambling activities on the Internet.

The most important aspect to take note about this act is that it deals about funding of Internet gambling accounts and do not pertain about the actual betting. One of the gambling law attorneys said that this act is not about the activity of a player but is mainly focused on specific financial transactions. Also, this law does not make Online gambling illegal, what makes it illegal is how you fund the wager. In simple terms, the state of playing is not the criminal offense but the financial transaction.

The laws explained above have loopholes and do not clearly state that betting online is illegal. This makes the online gambling industry more interesting as the years to come.