Utah is one of the two states (along with Hawaii) that have completely outlawed gambling within state lines. It may sound surprising, then, to know that Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) betting is tolerated within the state – stranger even that gambling Mecca doesn’t allow it at all! To learn about the ins and out of DFS betting in Utah and its legality in the state, keep reading.
- We use trusted sources such as: The Deseret News and The Saltlake Tribune 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 blackjack and have created an online roulette guide.
- We keep on top of any changes to the law by closely following the movements of the Attorney General’s Office in Utah and the office of the Governor of Utah.
Online Daily Fantasy Sports in Utah – Overview
Those hoping that Utah will move to officially legalize Daily Fantasy Sports shouldn’t hold their breath. Utah has long been known for its zero-tolerance attitude towards all forms of gambling, so the prospect of a politician trying to introduce some clarification around the legality of DFS in the state is unlikely. For the most part, it seems as though politicians are trying to keep DFS ‘out of sight, out of mind’, and this seems to be working for DFS operators and players alike.
Recently, when sports betting was declared legal in a 2018 Supreme Court ruling, the question arose about whether or not Utah would be next to consider gambling legislation. Any hopes of this were quickly shot down by Utah’s Governor, who said that while he appreciates the Supreme Court’s reaffirmation of states’ rights to regulate gambling within their borders, Utah “will exercise [this right] by continuing to prohibit gambling within our state.”
For the time being, Utah’s DFS players should enjoy the allowance of DFS – which remains a little afforded treat in the anti-gambling state. Below, we have listed the top sports leagues in Utah and how they can be played.
Online Daily Fantasy NBA – All That Jazz
The Utah Jazz may have started their career without much success, but in the last three years, they’ve qualified for the playoffs. Something tells us that this is the team to watch in the years to come, so make sure you’re considering Jazz players in your NBA fantasy drafts. In NBA Fantasy, players are asked to draft a lineup of 8 players from at least two different NBA games. Contests are won by having the highest total points scored by your chosen players.
Online Daily Fantasy MLS – Keep It Real
The 2009 MLS Cup-winning Real Salt Lake has excited local fans of Major League Soccer since they were founded in 2004, so it makes sense why Utah’s fans would also love the MLS fantasy league too. In MLS Fantasy, contests are won by players scoring points, e.g. goals score 10 points while Red Cards earn -3.
Online Daily Fantasy MLB – Draft Wisely!
Utah’s residents, like the rest of the nation, love watching baseball, and they seem to love playing it in fantasy sports just as much as well. MLB Fantasy asks players to draft a team of 10 players, with a limit of 5 hitters. Points can be earned for stealing bases, home run, etc. Contestants must draft teams within a $50,000 budget, so draft wisely!
Online Daily Fantasy NFL – Touchdown
While no National Football League teams call Utah home, this doesn’t mean that Utah’s residents aren’t huge fans of the league. In the popular NFL Fantasy League, contestants are asked to build a team of 9 NFL players and put them head-to-head against other contestants’ teams. Points are scored depending on the real-life performance of players, which means that if your offense scores a running touchdown you earn 6 points, while if your defense makes an interception you can earn 2 points.
College Football – Georgia Bulldogs
College sports are popular in Utah, with a number of universities all having great collegiate programs that have gone on to produce national professional athletic talent. The University of Utah is home to the NCAA’s Utah Utes, and their football team is perhaps the most popular and successful team in the state.
Former alumni of the Utah Utes include Pro Football Hall of Famer Larry Wilson, George Seifert, and the Tennessee Titans’ Robert Johnson. Thankfully, college fantasy leagues are open to Utah’s DFS fans, so we recommend signing up and seeing why it’s so popular today!
Timeline of Daily Fantasy Sports Legislation
Along with Hawaii, Utah remains a completely anti-gambling state, dating back all the way to a time before it even officially existed as a state. This attitude is deeply rooted in religious and moral grounds and is unlikely to change at any time in the near future. Below, we’ve created a timeline of some of the most important years in Utah’s gambling history. You can read more on our dedicated Utah gambling page.
|1851||Gambling is outlawed in the region now known as Utah in the “Ordinance to Suppress Gaming”|
|1875||Gambling laws are enhanced, enacting gambling laws to clarify that all forms of gambling are illegal in the state.|
|1925||Pari-mutuel betting on horse races is briefly legalized before it is shut down in 1927.|
|2012||Anti-gambling laws are strengthened to include online gambling and sports betting.|
Legal Daily Fantasy Betting Age in Utah
The gambling age is strictly controlled in Utah – casinos and operators do not tolerate it in any way. If you want to participate in whatever form of betting and gambling, you must be over 18 years of age, otherwise, you are classified as underaged. The sanctions that you might undergo vary between one thousand dollars of a fine and up to 6 months of jail.
DFS Betting Age
Is Daily Fantasy Betting Legal Outside of the State?
Do you travel across the country often? Are you worried about not being able to access DFS betting? Thankfully, DFS betting is now legal in most states across the USA. However, if it’s just state lines that you are crossing, you may have some difficulty. There are only nine states who continue to adopt regulations that block DFS activity, including Utah’s neighbors Idaho, Arizona and Nevada. There are a number of different reasons why these states choose to block DFS, ranging from tricky legislative hurdles holding up progress to deeply rooted moral concerns clashing with DFS’ model. While there is hope for some of these states to move toward legalization in the following years, other states show very little interest in legalizing gambling of any kind any time soon.
The Best Fantasy Sports App in Utah
As if the allure for DFS wasn’t already so great, now most major Daily Fantasy Sports operators have created dedicated DFS apps to ensure that you can bet anywhere, anytime! This makes drafting and checking scores even more convenient and is our preferred way to play. Based on our experience, we recommend the DraftKings app the most for DFS betting.
Taxes on Daily Fantasy Winnings: Legal Overview
The federal tax laws apply to all winnings from gambling and betting in Utah. The rate of taxation is 25% and according to the state’s laws you must class your winnings as income. Also, it is needed to include these amounts in your annual tax declaration, but for more information, please, refer to the Utah State Tax Commission.
Upcoming Regulation Changes to Be Aware Of
It is not difficult to say that It is unlikely that there will be any changes to Daily Fantasy Sports regulations in Utah – or regulations of any form of gambling, for that matter, in the near future. The strong anti-gambling culture is so deeply rooted within the minds of lawmakers and residents that it would take a major shift for this attitude to change.
Despite this, players of DFS have very little to worry about, with lawmakers yet to progress any kind of bill that outlaws DFS activities. This is quite surprising considering the wagering element to DFS, but we’ve learned that it’s better to not question good things when they happen and just enjoy the game.