- We use trusted sources such as: The Midweek Oahu and the The Honolulu Star-Advertiser to stay on top of all industry related news and developments.
- We aren’t just experts in sports betting, we have dedicated teams across the gambling industry including for casino games such as video poker and have created an online roulette guide.
- We keep on top of any changes to the law by closely following the movements of the Hawaii Attorney General’s Office and the State Government of Hawaii.
What is Daily Fantasy?
Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) is a competition that requires contestants to construct a team of players from a particular sports league, with points being earned based on the real-world performance of the players that week. All contestants are required to stick to the same salary caps in drafting players and competitions last for short periods – requiring players to constructs teams weekly or daily.
As of June 2019, DFS betting is illegal in Hawaii. Unlike many other states in the USA who are or already have legalized DFS, there isn’t much indication that this will change in the near future.
Online Daily Fantasy Sports in Hawaii – Overview
Hawaii may have some of the strictest gambling laws in all of the USA. Despite their reputation as a relaxed family holiday destination, when it comes to gambling of all forms, Hawaii’s government isn’t budging. In fact, it’d be more accurate to state that Hawaii doesn’t have gambling laws per se, but more anti-gambling laws. This means no casinos, no horse racing, no sports betting and no lottery.
It’s for this reason that Daily Fantasy Sports are and probably will remain illegal for some time in the Aloha State. It was officially banned in 2016 by the state Attorney General Doug Chin, who said that although the technology for gambling has changed, “the vice has not.”
While Bill S 204 looks to change the legal status of DFS, progress has been slow and unpopular. Despite this, we have created a list of the most popular sports in Hawaii and how they could be played by residents if DFS is ever legalized.
Online Daily Fantasy MLB – A Diamond Opportunity
With no MLB teams of their own, Hawaii’s residents are known to support a number of teams in Major League Baseball. In MLB Fantasy, players are to draft a team of 10 players, with no more than 5 hitters allowed per teams. There are many different ways for players to score points, with 10 points given for a home run, 5 points for stealing bases, etc.
Online Daily Fantasy NBA – Slam Dunking To Victory
In the NBA Fantasy league, contestants must draft 8 players from at least two different NBA games. Scoring is also based on real-life gameplay statistics e.g. 1 point for every point scored, 2 points for a block. Despite Hawaii having no teams in the NBA or in any major professional league for that matter, there’s no denying that NBA Fantasy would be loved by Hawaii’s players.
Online Daily Fantasy NFL – A Bona Fide Touch Down
NFL may be America’s favorite sport – and this no doubt applies to Hawaii. The NFL Fantasy League is also one of the most popular DFS leagues played, asking players to build a team of 9 of NFL stars into their lineup. In Hawaii, these teams are bound to be full of players from popular teams the Raiders and the Steelers, who could lead residents to weekly victory if DFS were ever legalized.
Online Daily Fantasy MLS – Goal!
The Major Soccer League remains to be a popular attraction for Hawaii’s sun-loving residents. The MLS Fantasy League asks contestants to draft teams of 8 players that must be competing in two different games. Contests are won by players scoring points and also by not having points deducted, e.g. while goals score 10 points, red cards will result in a 3 point deduction.
College Fantasy Sport – Hawaii’s Rainbow Warriors
With no teams in any major professional league, Hawaiians turn to their universities to cheer on local athletic talent. The University of Hawaii, in particular, is host to a number of great college teams, but the most popular has to be the Rainbow Warriors football team. With 4 conference titles under their belt, the Rainbow Warriors have been playing in the NCAA Division for over 50 years.
Over the course of its history, 69 Rainbow Warriors have been drafted into the NFL, which is a truly commendable number for such a small state. With such a loyal following of locals, college football may be the most popular DFS league for Hawaiins if it were to be legalized.
Timeline of Daily Fantasy Sports Legislation
The road to DFS legalization in Hawaii is bound to be a long and rocky one, but this is not to say that legalization is impossible. While many residents are content with other games of chance remaining illegal, many see DFS to be based on skill as it requires thorough research of players’ skills to be good at it. While made illegal officially in 2016, a new bill may change this if lawmakers can be convinced of the merits of DFS gameplay.
Below is a table of important years in Hawaii’s gambling history. For more information on gambling in the state, visit our dedicated Hawaii gambling page.
|1959||Gambling is made illegal in the state of Hawaii. Gambling is defined as any game of chance, with a player stakes some material item on its outcome.|
|2010||Several bills are introduced to consider the possibility of casino gambling and a proposal to set up a State lottery. They are quickly shot down.|
|2016||Online DFS sports are declared unlawful in the state of Hawaii as lawmakers liken it to other games of chance.|
|2017||Bill S 204 is introduced to allow DFS in Hawaii. The Bill has struggled to progress through the government.|
Legal Daily Fantasy Betting Age in Hawaii
Gambling of all forms is completely illegal in Hawaii. If a player is caught gambling, it is considered a misdemeanor and is punishable with no longer than a year in prison or a fine of $6,000. However, those holding gambling contests in the state for personal profit could face even more serious penalties and jail time.
DFS Betting AgeGambling in Hawaii is illegal
Alcohol AgeThe legal drinking age in Hawaii is 21 years old.
Weed AgeRecreational cannabis smoking is illegal in Hawaii.
Is Daily Fantasy Betting Legal Outside of the State?
Daily Fantasy League betting is now legal in most states in the USA, with only nine states yet to legalize it – including Hawaii. Some of these states include Montana, Idaho and Washington. Despite this, there have been a number of states who have introduced legalization measures in the 2019 session of the government, so some of these states may follow suit. For example daily fantasy betting in West Virginia is serviced by some of the finest operators in the US and that’s perfectly legal.
While some states share similar attitudes on gambling in general to Hawaii, other states have different reasons as to why DFS is illegal. Some still consider it too much a game of chance, while others are curtailed by tricky legislation that must be amended before progress can be made on legalization.
Taxes on Daily Fantasy Winnings: Legal Overview
As gambling is illegal in the state of Hawaii, there is no way to legally declare gambling as personal income on your annual tax return. Gambling in Hawaii is highly advised against to avoid incurring any harsh penalties.
Upcoming Regulation Changes to Be Aware Of
It is unlikely that there will be any changes to Daily Fantasy Sports regulations or regulations of any form of gambling, for that matter, in the next few years. Hawaii’s government and residents have a strong anti-gambling culture that will be difficult to surpass in the journey to legalization.
In saying that, it is not uncommon for Supreme Court rulings to pave the way for legalization of any kind in the United States, with the potential for the legalization of online sports betting becoming a recent reality after a 2018 ruling in the New Jersey Supreme Court. While not likely, you never know what can happen on a Federal level that could influence the laws of states.