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PennsylvaniaPennsylvania is one of the US states that only started legalising gambling options late in the game. Despite this, the land-based and online casino industry of Pennsylvania is rapidly rising.
Land Based GamblingAllowed in Casino, Sports Betting, Poker, Bingo, Lottery, Horse Racing Online GamblingAllowed in Sports Betting, DFS Min Age18-21 Number of Land Based Casinos12 Number of Poker Rooms10 Popular Land Based CasinosHarrah’s Parx Casino Rivers Casino Sands Bethlehem Sugarhouse Casino Pari-MutuelYes Smoking BanYes Estimated Tax Revenue from Gambling$2.8B Estimated Gambling Revenue$6.8B
Land Based Gambling
Regulated Since: 2004
Gambling Age: 21
Regulated Since: 2017
Gambling Age: 21
Regulated Since: 2010
Gambling Age: 21
Regulated Since: 1981
Gambling Age: 18
Regulated Since: 0
Gambling Age: 0
Regulated Since: 1963
Gambling Age: 21
Online Sports Betting
Regulated Since: 2019
Gambling Age: 21
Regulated Since: 0
Gambling Age: 0
OverviewPennsylvania is one of the US states that only started legalising gambling options late in the game. Despite this, the land-based and online casino industry of Pennsylvania is rapidly rising.
Pennsylvania like any other state in the US has had a long road to walk before reaching the gambling. The state has had a long outstretch of struggles in trying to legalise many forms of gambling in particular online gambling.
As a resident of Pennsylvania, you will get to enjoy every form of popular gambling legally. The key thing to remember in this state is that each form of gambling is regulated differently. That being said you can safely enjoy legal horse racing, lottery, bingo, slot casino, table games and more in this state.
Like many other states, Pennsylvania was late to the party when legalizing casinos and racinos. But today they have over 13 casinos in the state and derive over $6.8,000,000,000 in revenue from gambling. Furthermore, the high taxes applied to legal gambling options have ensured the state rakes in an estimate of $2.8,000,000,000 in taxes a year. Their tax revenue is said to be among the highest annual tax revenue in the US casino market.
Gambling has become a big business in the Keystone State (Pennsylvania). Their attempts to regulate online casino gambling was met with some major backlash but after many struggles, the state finally managed to legalise most forms of online gambling.
You will find legal online casino, online poker and online sports betting options in this state. Of course, there are heavy regulations in place for all online gambling activities to keep the industry secure and on track.
In Pennsylvania, you will find that there are very little restrictions on the games available in casinos, racinos and online sites. You can enjoy all forms of slots, video poker and table games. This state has had its many ups and downs especially in its attempts to legalize online gambling.
After online gambling laws were passed it took nearly two years before any forms of legal online gambling options became available in the state. It’s clear that while Pennsylvania is a state open to the many avenues of gambling it is also one facing many issues in the legislation process.
Keep reading to find out all about the current laws and regulations of land-based and online gambling activities in the state of Pennsylvania.
It’s no secret that people in Pennsylvania love gambling and fortunately there is an abundance of land-based casinos, sportsbooks and other legal gambling activities available to indulge in. The legalization process of these did not come quick or easy.
Truth be told, Pennsylvania was one of the states that originally went against legalising gambling. And today the Keystone state is considered to be the second-largest casino state in terms of gambling revenue.
Then in 1967, the state made the first move into the gambling world by legalising horse betting. Residents of the state can enjoy taking part in live horse racing and off-track betting options. Shortly after in 1971 the state established their very own state lottery like many other states. The state lottery holds lotto drawings and sells a range of instant games. The lotto drawings in this state include Pick 2, Pick 3, Pick 4, Pick 5, Cash 4 Life, Cash 5 and Match 6. The Pennsylvania Lottery is also among the US states that partake in the multistate lottery drawings. This enables residents to take part in big prize pool lotteries such as the Mega Millions and the Powerball. Charitable games are also legal in the state allowing charities to host limited games of chance to raise funds. Bingo is one of the many forms of gambling that is available for charity purposes. There are over a dozen licensed bingo halls in the state where this gambling activity can be enjoyed.
It was only in 2004 that the first state-licensed casinos started to appear on the scene but they had to wait until 2010 to offer class 3 table games. When visiting the state you can quickly see that the majority of state casinos are attached to racetracks. There are three resort-style casinos in the state however but these offer fewer slot options than racinos. The good news is that you will be able to enjoy gambling on slots, video poker and table games at all of the land-based establishments in the state.
And finally, in 2017 online gambling and sports betting was also written into law. The laws might have changed in 2017 but it took until 2019 for legal online operators to start appearing in the state. The new legislation allows for players to actively enjoy legal online casinos, online poker rooms and online sports betting opportunities.
As with any state seeking to regulate and ‘control’, the gambling industry in the region Pennsylvania has several boards and agencies in place for licensing and regulatory purposes. The main licensing authority in the state is the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board is a governmental agency of the state that was founded in 2004. This regulatory and enforcement agency is tasked with controlling all forms of gambling in the state. This includes rules and regulations, licensing applications and approvals and overseeing all gambling activities to ensure it is done responsibly. The board was created to enforce all rules and regulations with the sole purpose being to create a safe and fair gaming experience for players both online and offline.
The board has the authority to issue up to 14 casino licenses of which 7 has been guaranteed to the state’s racetracks. Five were awarded to standalone Pennsylvania casinos and three to casino resorts. With this in mind, there will be a total of 15 casinos licensed within the state.
All casinos in this state have to pay a tax rate of 55% on all slots, video poker, and electronic table games. Live poker and table games are subject to a tax rate of 16%.
In this state, all charities have the option of applying for a bingo license. The license fee is $100 and from approval, it will be active for a year. With the license in place, the bingo games may not have a prize larger than $250 for any single game unless there is a jackpot prize draw. The Bingo games with a jackpot may not have a prize larger than $2,000. The maximum amount of money a bingo charity is allowed to give away in a day is $4,000. The legislation also states that no bingo hall is allowed to host games over more than two nights a week. The only exception to this rule is for annual celebrations where non-profit groups are allowed to hold 10 consecutive days of bingo games.
In this state, the Pennsylvania Lottery is only allowed to spread two types of games namely instant games commonly known as scratch-off tickets and lotto drawings. As mentioned earlier the state holds its own lotto drawing but also participates in multi-state pools.
Pennsylvania is home to active horse racing activities with seven licensed tracks. At each racetrack, there is a racebook and all horse racing tracks are legally allowed to partner with online betting apps for remote wagering options. Bettors may make deposits and withdrawals at the partner tracks.
The legal gambling age for all gambling activities is 18 apart for casino gaming which requires you to be 21 or older.
Casinos and Gambling Facilities in Pennsylvania Gambling?
FAQIs Online Gambling Legal in Pennsylvania?Yes, online gambling was legalized in the state in 2017 but online casinos only launched in 2019.Is it Safe to Play at Offshore Gambling Sites?Yes, as long as the casino is licensed and regulated by a recognized authority in another region.Is there a state lottery in Pennsylvania?Yes, the Pennsylvania state lottery only allows for instant games and lotto draws which includes multi-state lotteries.Is there horse racing in Pennsylvania?Yes, there are seven tracks in the state each with a casino attached.Is off-track betting legal in Pennsylvania?Yes, off-track betting is legal in the state of Pennsylvania with all seven tracks offering racebooks.Is online simulcast betting legal in Pennsylvania?Yes, racetracks are partnered with online sportsbooks allowing for online horse betting activities.Are daily fantasy sports sites legal in Pennsylvania?Yes, daily fantasy sports is legal in the state along with most other gambling activities.When did gambling become legal in Pennsylvania?While horse racing and lotteries were legal since the 1900s most traditional gambling forms such casinos, slots and table games only became legal in July 2004.What is the minimum gambling age in Pennsylvania?You have to be 18 or older for most forms of gambling, for casino gambling you need to be 21 or older.Is online poker legal in Pennsylvania?Yes, that being said there is currently no official online poker sites in the state. While the laws and regulations are in place online poker has not yet launched in the state.