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Wyoming Gambling & Online Poker Laws

Wyoming PokerWyoming has very few legal options when it comes to playing poker. There are 4 tribal casinos within the state, and a few of these offer poker. Aside from the casinos that offer poker games, the only option for legal gambling in the state is home poker games. This is why many residents of Wyoming have chosen to play poker online.

Can Players From Wyoming Play Poker Online?

Yes! With very few options to play poker, many residents of Wyoming log into online poker rooms to play online. All best US facing poker sites accept players from Wyoming so they have many options when it comes to choosing a site to play it.

You can sign up at one of these sites and begin playing real money games in a matter of minutes. Most sites offer hefty bonuses to new players.

Is it Legal to Play Online Poker in Wyoming?

Wyoming has a complex set of laws relating to gambling. However, we have not found any laws that specifically mention online gambling. This leaves the answer to the question of legality of playing poker online in Wyoming in a grey area. Many people argue that it is legal according to the laws, and many other people argue that it is illegal according to the laws.

We cannot give you a definitive answer on whether it is legal or not. What we can do is go over some of the laws that Wyoming has in place pertaining to gambling. You can see these below:

  • Wyoming defines gambling as Gambling means risking any property for gain contingent in whole or in part upon lot, chance, the operation of a gambling device or the happening or outcome of an event, including a sporting event, over which the person taking a risk has no control. (Section 6-7-101)
  • By this definition one could argue that he does have control when it comes to poker.
  • This section of definitions goes on to define gambling device as Gambling device means any device, machine, paraphernalia or equipment except an antique gambling device that is used or usable in the playing phases of any professional gambling activity, whether that activity consists of gambling between persons or gambling by a person involving the playing of a machine
  • This definition of gambling device may include computer, phones, or tablets by its broad definition.
  • A person convicted of gambling commits a misdemeanor and is punishable by not more than 6 months in jail and a fine of not more than $750 (Section 6-7-102)
  • If you are convicted of professional gambling then it is a felony charge punishable by imprisonment up to 3 years and a fine up to $3,000.
  • Home poker games seem to be legal under the laws of Wyoming as long as no one is taking rake or charging to enter the game.
  • We have found no instances where an individual has been charged for playing poker online in the state of Wyoming. [1]

We recommend that you contact a legal professional if you are concerned about the legality of playing poker online in Wyoming. You will find many different answers to the question of legality if you search online, but if you are worried then you should contact a professional.

Wyoming Gambling History

Gambling was common in Wyoming in the 19th century, but they state had a change of heart in the early 20th century and decided to prohibit gambling in 1901. Many cities chose to ignore the law, though. In fact, some cities began issuing licenses to gambling organizations after the law was passed.

The new laws banned almost all gambling except betting on horse races. This continued to be one of the most popular attractions in Wyoming. It was made illegal at some point in history, but the state legalized it again in 2011.

Wyoming is one of the few states that does not have a state run lottery. However, you will find some gambling in the state at the tribal casinos. There are 4 in existence in Wyoming. The good news for poker players is that at least one of these casinos offers live poker games.

Wyoming also legalized charity games. There are many bingo halls that operate for charity throughout the state. As you can see Wyoming isn’t one of the most gambling friendly states, but you will find some gambling within the state. [2]

Will Wyoming Legalize Online Poker in the Future?

Since Wyoming is one of the few states that does not even have a state lottery, it is unlikely that the state will legalize online poker any time in the near future. We think that this is one of the states that would likely opt-out of any federal regulation of online poker. The state does not seem interested in furthering their gambling options at this time.

References:

  1. Jump up ^ Wyoming Gambling Laws
  2. Jump up ^ Wyoming Gambling History
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