Connecticut Sports Betting
There are a few forms of sports betting that are legally allowed in Connecticut, depending on your definition of ‘sports’ and ‘betting’. For example, placing pari-mutuel wagers at the horse or greyhound track is a legal form of Connecticut sports betting, as is betting on the outcome of Jai Alai matches. No forms of bets can be placed online, though, they must all be placed either at on- or off-site locations. However, this looks like it will change in the near future, with legislation currently pending Tribal Approval for the legalization of online sports betting, and other forms of gambling you can read about below.
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- Hartford Courant
- Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling
- Connecticut State Department of Consumer Protection
Gambling Laws in Connecticut
First and foremost, it is important to understand that Connecticut has very strict laws when it comes to gambling, both online and not. There are currently only two legal casinos in operation, which are owned and run by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and the Mohegan tribe. These are among the biggest casinos in the whole country, which also holds a state lottery and allows some forms of pari-mutuel sports betting. Though it sounds flexible, the reality is that the exclusivity rights currently held by the two tribes have halted any progress in the expansion of other forms of gambling in the state. Current legislation allowing for a third casino in East Windor is all but confirmed pending their approval, as is legislation legalizing online sports betting and poker. At the time of writing, though, everything is at a standstill, which you can read more about later on the page.
Connecticut Daily Fantasy Laws
At the time of writing, any participation in paid daily fantasy sports is completely illegal for people in Connecticut. However, this doesn’t stop some online operators offering their services to those who wish to break the law and take the risk of penalty if they should get caught. However, the most recent budget to be introduced does allow for the regulation of the pastime, should it be approved by the state’s Native American tribes.
Casinos in Connecticut
There are currently no legal Connecticut online casinos available, which is something that may change with the pending legislation. However, this is at a standstill, as the two Native American-owned and operated casinos in the state are actually some of the biggest in the country, with tremendous buying power in government. The Mogehan Sun and Foxwoods currently contribute 25% of their takings from slot machines to the government, which is around $190 million per casino per financial year. The exclusivity of the two tribes goes so far to say that recreational ‘Las Vegas’ themed after-graduation or after-prom parties are illegal.
Poker in Connecticut
In 2012, Connecticut Governor, Dannell Malloy, stated that “legislation of online poker is inevitable” in light of laws passing in other states, though there has been little progress since then and online poker in Connecticut remains illegal at present. The only legal poker currently allowed to be played in the state are at the two casinos – note that even games or tournaments held in bars where the house takes a cut are also violating the law.
The first form of gambling to be legalized in Connecticut was the CT Lottery. Its profits contribute to the state, so far in the ballpark of around $9.5 billion. Tickets are available for purchase to a number of different state and multi-state games from almost 3,000 retailers in Connecticut, however players must purchase their tickets in person as none can be sold online due to the federal online gambling laws.
History of Gambling in Connecticut
As mentioned earlier, the first form of gambling to be officially legalized in Connecticut was the state lottery. Most of the big movements in gambling laws occurred in the late 80s to mid-90s as the two major tribal casinos set up and cemented their places in the state. Not much has changed legally since 1996, much to the dismay of companies like MGM and other corporations looking to slip into the state. Headlines recently have been filled with frustration as lawmakers struggle to find a compromise that makes everyone happy.
|1983||The Connecticut Lottery is legalized|
|1986||The Foxwoods Casino makes its first appearance as a Bingo-only location.|
|1992||Table games are added to Foxwoods Casino.|
|1993||Slot machines are installed at Foxwoods.|
|1996||The Mohegan Sun casino opens to rival Foxwoods|
|2012||Governor Dannel Mallory is quoted as saying that the ‘regulation of online poker in Connecticut is inevitable’.|
|2017||Governor Dannel Mallory signs an expansion agreement for the East Windsor casino. He also signs a budget with an allowance for daily fantasy sports regulation. Both are pending tribal approval.|
Connecticut State Facts
Also known as the ‘Nutmeg State’, Connecticut has the highest per-capita income, which also could be a reason as to the success of its large, tribal-owned and operated land-based casinos. Named after its river, the state shares borders with Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New York and Long Island Sound. Though it doesn’t technically have direct oceanfront, it has a long maritime history that helped enrichen its population.
|Biggest Offline Gambling Location||Foxwoods Resort Casino|
|Gambling Commissioner||Connecticut State Department of Consumer Protection Gaming Division (DCP)|
|Spoken Languages||87.1% English, 10.8% Spanish, 1% Portuguese, 1% Polish|
|Biggest Local Sports Team||Bridgeport Sound Tigers|
|Connecticut Tax Authority||Connecticut Department of Revenue Services|
|Link to the State Law||https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/law/gambling.htm|
|Gambling Winning Tax||Subject to Income Tax|
|State Website Link||https://portal.ct.gov/|
|Famous Local Gamblers||Andy Bloch|
Gambling Age in Connecticut
As with many other states, there are two different gambling ages for activities based in Connecticut. Those wanting to enter one of the two enormous casinos in the state will need to be at least 21 years old. However, all forms of pari-mutuel wagering are legal for people aged at least 18 years old. This includes the several types of possible sports betting such as horse and greyhound racing, and Jai Alai.
Online Gambling Age:
Responsible Gambling and Addiction Prevention
The state has its own responsible gambling authority, the Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling (CCPG). The non-profit organization has charged itself with helping people prevent gambling problems, as well as provide services for those suffering from an addiction. It offers both a 24-hour helpline as well as support via text message.
Upcoming Regulation and Expected Changes
Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy has made several concerted attempts to pass new sports betting, online casino and daily fantasy sports laws in the state. However, at this stage all efforts have been held in a stalemate by the exclusivity agreements with the Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot tribes. Most recently was placeholder bill 665, which aims to amend the current sports betting statutes.