Legal New York Online Gambling, Poker & Casinos

Gambling legislation in New York is highly restrictive in terms of what New Yorkers can and can't do in the Big Apple.

Many of the state's legislation is over a century in age and when you consider how tough laws on gambling were in the late 19th century to early 20th century, it's unsurprising that punitive restrictions still apply in NYC.

The state-operated lottery is the most popular legalized gambling option, while tribal casinos and pari-mutuel wagering is also a popular pastime here.

New York Gambling Laws - Summary and Look to the Future

The New York penal code states that "any device, machine paraphernalia or equipment which is used or usable in the playing phases of any gambling activity" is deemed an illegal betting device.

This means that any internet-connected device would come under this umbrella.

However, no specific law exists for penalizing individuals who place online wagers on sports for instance. The penal code only discusses online wagers placed on games of skill and chance.

New York Gambling Laws - A Brief History

  • 1833 - New York is the first US state to enforce a constitutional ban on all forms of lottery games.
  • 1967 - State-operated New York lottery passed by state Congress.
  • 1970 - Off-track betting permitted throughout New York.
  • 2001 - Many tribal casinos legalized, while the era of racinos is embraced by the NY state.
  • 2002 - New York starts selling Mega Millions multi-state lottery tickets.
  • 2010 - New York agrees to join the Powerball lottery.
  • 2013 - Full commercial casinos approved by voters in the Upstate NY Economic Development Gaming Act.

What Types of Gambling are Legal in New York?

  • Casino Gambling – Casino gambling is legal in New York but most of the full-fledged casinos are tribal casinos and are in the Upstate region. Racetracks in New York are all racinos that offer slots and electronic versions of table games.
  • Sports Betting – Sports betting is legal in New York for horse racing and a bill has already been passed to expand sports betting in New York. You can follow all of the New York sports betting news here.
  • Online Betting – Online betting in New York is limited to horse racing and most of the major horse racing betting sites take players from New York but online bettors can’t place wagers on races that are taking place within the state. You can follow online gambling updates for New York here.
  • Daily Fantasy – New York was a battleground for the Daily Fantasy Sites and once the dust settled the large DFS sites accept players from New York.
  • Poker – Poker is legal in New York at the casinos.
  • Bingo – Bingo is legal in New York for Charites.
  • Lottery – New York has one of the largest state lotteries in the United States with sales exceeding $9 billion a year. The New York Lottery offers daily draws, weekly draws, scratch off tickets as well as interstate lottery tickets.