In 2013, New Jersey became the third state in the US to regulate online gambling (the other two states being Delaware and Nevada). Governor Chris Christie and the state legislature haggled over the details and eventually came up with a plan to allow real money online gambling for all residents of New Jersey.
The legislation allows gambling operators to apply for licenses that allow them to spread gambling games and poker tables over the internet. Only Atlantic City casinos are allowed to participate, and each casino teamed up with an established software provider to provide games to players.
How can I get started?
First, you must be physically in New Jersey and be 21 or older. If you meet those criteria, all you have to do is visit any of the following websites to get started. Each of these gambling sites is operated by a partnership that includes one major land-based casino and one major software provider.
All of the following sites are guaranteed to be safe places to gamble for real money. These are already big names in the New Jersey casino industry and they are officially recognized by the Division of Gaming Enforcement.
Top New Jersey Legal Sites
Below are the official websites of all legitimate gambling sites in New Jersey. These are the actual gambling sites that are regulated by the state to offer real money games to residents of New Jersey. If you live in New Jersey, all you have to do is visit any of the following sites to sign up and play.
It’s still too early to provide reviews of these gambling sites, but I’ll be adding those soon. Just remember that these sites are all operated by some of the biggest operators in the industry. I do not expect any of these casinos to be of poor quality or unsafe.
Tropicana is in a partnership with Gamesys and is focusing on its gambling games for now. No poker as of yet, but they do have the ability to add poker in the future.
Golden Nugget teamed up with Bally Technologies to offer both casino games and poker. Each product can be found at a different website:
Caesars teamed up with 888 Holdings. Both of these companies are huge in the industry. Caesars has the rights to the World Series of Poker while 888 has been offering online poker since the beginning of online poker. Both are highly respected gambling brands.
As far as poker goes, Caesars is using the WSOP to its fullest extent. This is shaping up to be the biggest poker site in New Jersey. It looks like Caesars is focusing mostly on poker for now, but there are some casino games available at the website.
Note: The poker site is available in both New Jersey and Nevada.
Trump Plaza partnered with Betfair to offer both poker and gambling in New Jersey. Betfair is another well-known gambling website that has served the UK/European market for years. It looks like they have BetfairNJ.com and LetsPlayNJ.com reserved, but both of those websites are redirecting to BetfairCasino.com for now. I’m not sure which sites they intend on using for the long term, but for now its BetFairCasino.com.
Bonus: Deposit $10 or more to the casino and you’ll get an instant $10 added to your account. Poker players can also get up to $25 for free after making their first deposit. After you earn 225 loyalty points by playing poker there, you’ll get $25 dropped into your account.
The website listed below is currently offering casino games and poker on the same website:
Trump Taj Mahal
The Trump Taj Mahal partnered with Ultimate Gaming to offer poker and gambling. Ultimate Gaming is the software behind Ultimate Poker, which was the first legal poker site to open when Nevada legalized online poker.
Bonus: Both the poker site and gambling site are giving out bonuses worth up to $500 to all new players. First, you get an instant $5 no-deposit bonus as soon as you open and verify your account. Then, you’ll get a 100% bonus worth up to $500 on your first deposit. Plus, you’ll be entered into a monthly sweepstakes that will give you up to $500 on top of that.
Borgata teamed up with bwin.party to offer both online poker and casino games. Party Poker (who merged with Bwin a few years ago), was once the biggest online poker site in the United States. Party Poker has been looking forward to this day for a very long time, so you can bet they will do an excellent job.
Most experts expect that Borgata and bwin.party will be the frontrunners for online poker in New Jersey. Considering the experience of Party, I tend to agree. However, I think WSOP.com will give them a good run for their money.
Bonus: Sign up for an account at partypokernj.com and you’ll get $15 free – no deposit required. You’ll get $5 to try the tournaments, $5 to try the cash games and $5 to try the casino games. Not a bad deal at all.
If you sign up for an account at BorgataPoker.com, you’ll get $20 free. Again, no deposit required. And finally, if you sign up for an account at BorgataCasino.com, you’ll get $20 free. These second two offers are only open to the first 1,000 new players each day. My suggestion: sign up a minute after midnight to make sure you get your bonus.
New Jersey Online Gambling FAQ
Is real money online gambling legal in New Jersey?
Yes. New Jersey residents are free to join New Jersey-regulated casinos and poker rooms. Gambling on offshore iGaming sites is also perfectly legal, as the state doesn’t criminalize participating in an unlicensed game as a player.
When does online gambling go live in New Jersey?
Online gambling went live for all New Jersey residents on November 26th, 2013. Out of the 12 Atlantic City casino operators with a physical presence in New Jersey, 10 of were ready to go on that date. Most of the operators went live with both casino and poker websites, but a few are concentrating on their casino products for now.
What laws cover online gambling in New Jersey?
Gambling in New Jersey is covered by New Jersey State Statutes, Section 2. The law focuses on shutting down illegal gambling operators and isn’t restrictive when dealing with individual gamblers.
Can New Jersey residents still gamble at offshore gambling sites?
The New Jersey law criminalizes all wagers that aren’t placed in a state-controlled environment. As you’d expect from a state with such a massive gambling industry, the regulations target illegal gambling operators rather than individual players.
In fact, New Jersey doesn’t even penalize the act of participating in an unlawful game as a player. This means that New Jersey residents are free to enjoy the action on both offshore sites and state-licensed sites without having to worry about any potential legal consequences.
New Jersey-based gambling enthusiasts aren’t restricted from signing up at most major offshore gambling sites.
What are the most popular banking options supported by New Jersey-facing sites?
Local sites offer more banking options than offshore operators, but if you want a “one size fits all” solution, a Visa or MasterCard credit card is going to be the perfect choice for both types of sites.
Withdrawals are slightly more complicated, but generally speaking most sites will allow you to cash out via a wire transfer while simultaneously giving you access to an additional operator-specific method or two, such as picking up your money at the casino cage in person.
New Jersey Gaming History – The Road to Legalizing NJ Online Gambling
New Jersey is the unquestionable leader when it comes to land-based gambling on the East Coast. Most of the high-profile gambling establishments are located on the Atlantic City boardwalk, but it’s worth remembering that New Jersey also has several pari-mutuel racetracks on the outside.
The state allows charitable gambling and has its own lottery. New Jersey was the third state to regulate its intrastate online gambling market, which means that the local gambling enthusiasts are free to get some licensed casino and poker action without having to turn to offshore iGaming sites.
The law passed in New Jersey authorizes online gambling in New Jersey for a 10 year trial period. At the end of that period, the law will be reviewed and subject to change or outright repeal. The legislation places a 15% tax on all online gambling revenue and restricts the online websites to residents of New Jersey who are 21 or older.
Only casinos with a physical presence in New Jersey are allowed to open real money websites. This means there will be a maximum of 12 online casinos in New Jersey. However, each casino is allowed to occupy up to 5 different websites under different names. What this means is there would be a maximum of 60 distinct websites offering real money games in New Jersey.
To date, only 10 of the 12 casinos in New Jersey have teamed up with software providers to provide games in New Jersey. The two odd ones out have either recently emerged from bankruptcy or are currently undergoing bankruptcy proceedings.
Residents of New Jersey also have the option to join self-exclusion lists. If someone needs a little help stopping gambling, that person can ask for a 1 or 5 year ban from all online casinos in New Jersey.
New Jersey Gambling Resources & Articles
NJ Internet Gaming Regulations – If you want to read through all the gritty details, here’s a link to the gambling regulations at the official New Jersey government website.
Rankings and reviews of licensed NJ & Atlantic City online casinos
Trump Casinos: From Beginning to End – A detailed look at the rise and fall of Donald Trump’s Atlantic City casinos.