As the capital of the United States of America, Washington D.C. is a must-visit destination for tourists and sports fans alike, with five teams from the district represented across all major sports leagues. What better way is there for locals to celebrate, then, than to draft some of their local talent into their weekly Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) drafts? Keep reading to discover what makes DFS betting in Washington D.C. so exciting.
- We use trusted sources such as: The Washington Post and The Washington Times 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 blackjack.
- We keep on top of any changes to the law by closely following the movements of the Washington Office of Lottery and Charitable Games and the Attorney General’s Office in Washington.
Daily Fantasy in Washington D.C.
Although there has been no official law passed in Washington D.C. regarding the legality of DFS, daily fantasy betting is tolerated in the state and it is considered to be legal. This is because it has passed a predominance test that gauges how much the outcome of the game is based on skill, and how much of it is based on luck, and the results determined that skilled players were far more likely to succeed than amateurs.
Online Daily Fantasy Sports in Washington D.C. – Overview
Since Daily Fantasy Sports first came onto the scene throughout the United States, very little has been done in the District of Columbia in terms of officially regulating it. However, as DFS has been exempted as a game of skill in the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 – a technicality that would have had to have been written and approved in Washington D.C., it would make little sense for the district to deem it as illegal. While regulation can lead to better consumer protection rights as well as provide an outline for taxing DFS operators statewide earnings, the lack of action on gambling-related activity is fairly characteristic of Washington D.C.
In 2010, lawmakers attempted to become the first state to legislate online gambling. While the motion progressed, it was shot down in 2011. Other than this, no casino or horse racing gambling is available for residents, with most having to get their gambling kicks from the state lottery before 2018. All of this changed in December of that year when lawmakers become some of the first to legalize online sports betting. As it is still yet to launch, residents have to wait until they can legally bet on games. Until then, there’s always DFS betting. Below, we’ve listed some of the most popular fantasy sports leagues in Washington D.C. and how they are played.
Online Daily Fantasy MLB – The National Pride
The Major League Baseball team the Washington Nationals has had plenty of success in recent years, having made it to the playoffs in four out of the last six years. It’s no wonder DFS players across the country are battling it out every week to include Washinton’s best in their lineups. In MLB Fantasy, contestants draft player pools of 10 players to play against their competition. Weekly rounds are won by contestants accumulating the most points, which are based on the player’s real-life gameplay statistics.
Online Daily Fantasy NFL – Play the Historical Redskins
The Washington Redskins have won five national titles over their long history in the National Football League and are one of the most valuable teams in the franchise. If this doesn’t motivate you to include Redskins players in your fantasy lineup, we don’t know what will! NFL Fantasy requires players to draft their favorite 9 NFL stars into their lineup in either public or private contests, their selections determined only by what their salary allows. Cash prizes are won at the end of every week.
Online Daily Fantasy NBA – Trust the Magic of the Wizards
The Washington Wizards may not have had a national title win since 1978, but this hasn’t stopped them from being one of the most exciting teams to watch over the National Basketball Association’s history. In NBA Fantasy, players are asked to draft a lineup of 8 players – including 76ers players, of course – all within a salary cap of $50,000. Contests are won by having the highest total points scored by your chosen players, e.g. 2 points for a steal, 1.5 points for an assist.
Online Daily Fantasy NHL – The Capital’s Capitals
In 2018, the Washington Capitals made their long-awaited mark on the National Hockey League and took home their first Stanley Cup victory. For this reason, there’s no better time to draft a Capitals player into your DFS lineup. In the NHL Fantasy League contestants to draft teams of 9 players from at least 3 different teams – so usually you can choose from both! Points are awarded to players for their goals, assists, blocked shots, etc.
College Fantasy Sport – Hall of Fame-Trained Talent
While there are a number of teams from distinguished colleges in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area that have done the district proud, few are as storied as the Georgetown University Hoyas basketball team. The team is noted for winning the Big East Conference a record seven times and appearing in the NCAA Tournament 30 times. They are also notable for fostering future NBA talent including Patrick Ewing, Alonzo Mourning, and Allen Iverson. The experience clearly made a big impression of Hall of Famer Ewing, who is currently acting as the head coach of the Hoyas.
For the best advantage over your competitors in both college basketball fantasy leagues and NBA fantasy leagues, we recommend paying attention to Ewing’s Hoyas. You never know where these players are going to end up!
Timeline of Daily Fantasy Sports Legislation
As far as gambling cultures go, Washington D.C. has developed slowly, with the state and its residents’ conservative viewpoint of gaming activities reflected in their laws. While there have been very few changes to the states gambling laws over the last century, recent years have seen attitudes gradually change. Regardless, we’ve created a timeline below to highlight some of the most important points in Washington D.C.’s gambling history.
For more info about the gambling practices in the state, visit our Washington D.C. gambling page.
|1981||Charity gaming is legalized, allowing provisions for bingo, raffles, and casino gaming on the grounds that licenses are registered through the lottery and charitable games control board.|
|1982||The State lottery begins with proceeds going to charity.|
|2010||A proposal to allow online gambling is drafted and is passed through the government committee.|
|2011||The online gaming proposal is almost introduced through the state lottery before it is stopped.|
|2018||Sports betting is legalized in Washington D.C. in December. It has yet to be launched.|
Legal Daily Fantasy Betting Age in Washington D.C.
The legal gambling age in Washington D.C. is 18. This means that if you are not yet eighteen years old, you don’t have the right to participate nor in DFS betting, nor in any other kind of gambling. In case you do not comply with the law you will be punished. The fines go up to $300, together with imprisonment of up to 30 days.
DFS Betting Age
Is Daily Fantasy Betting Legal Outside of the State?
If you regularly bet on DFS and find yourself crossing state lines often, then rest assured that you should be safe from breaking the law – DFS betting is now legal in most states. There are only nine states that have declared DFS illegal, including Arizona, Hawaii and Idaho. Luckily for residents in Washington D.C., both Maryland, and Virginia (the district’s neighbor states) have also legalized DFS activity. If you are traveling further, we recommend doing your research as some states will deal heavy penalty to those breaking gambling laws.
The Best Fantasy Sports App in Washington D.C.
Do you like to play DFS while on the go? Well, you’re in luck because most major Daily Fantasy Sports operators have developed dedicated DFS apps so that you can enjoy your favorite DFS leagues at any time. This makes drafting and checking scores even more convenient and is our preferred way to play. Based on our research, we recommend the DraftKings app the most for DFS betting.
Taxes on Daily Fantasy Winnings: Legal Overview
If you win from DFS or another type of gambling, keep in mind that the winnings are taxed according to the federal laws (25%). The state law, on the other hand, considers them as a taxable income and according to it, you must include them in your annual declaration of taxes. To have more information, please check the site of the Washington Office of Tax and Revenue.
Upcoming Regulation Changes to Be Aware Of
With DFS betting already legal for residents in Washington D.C., it doesn’t seem as though there will be any more moves to regulate the industry in the coming years. Most of the attention is directed at the rolling out of sports betting laws, which is projected to bring in millions in tax revenue for the district every year.
The process in setting up the regulations for sports betting has taken some time, but it seems as though the final changes are being approved now. Contrary to what many expected, sports betting will not be limited to a state lottery website, but bets can be made at various venues that sell alcohol. Depending on whether or not they meet the requirement, most bars should be able to apply for sportsbook licenses.
Sports betting has yet to be launched in the state, but it is only a matter of time. We speculate that it is possible that lawmakers who have noted the success of regulating and taxing sports betting winnings could look to extend such regulations to daily fantasy sports operators, but this, of course, remains to be seen.