Washington is a decent state if you’re looking for a good place to enjoy land-based gambling and a rather horrible place if you want to try playing at one of the US-facing offshore iGaming sites. The Evergreen State offers a number of tribal and commercial gambling venues and card rooms. Other than that, Washington allows pari-mutuel wagering, charity gambling and state-operated lotto. The state doesn’t have its own online gambling industry and joining the action at an unlicensed site isn’t exactly the best idea due to a weird quirk of the local regulations, which proves to be absolutely nasty when it comes to internet play.
Online Gambling in Washington
As mentioned above, Washington gambling laws are weird. The state isn’t particularly prohibitive when it comes to participating in any unlicensed games of chance as a player, but in this case the problem lies elsewhere. Section 9 of Washington Statutes clearly states that transmitting any kind of gambling-related information over the internet is a felony. This particular law was probably meant to target illegal gambling operators.
However, playing on any gambling site involves the transfer of this kind of information, so individual players are fairly likely to face very serious criminal charges when caught. Our recommendation is to avoid playing on any online gambling sites as long as you stay within the borders of Washington until the current regulations are changed.
Casinos & Sportsbooks Accepting Players From Washington
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The Washington landscape is littered with commercial and Native American gambling venues such as 7 Cedars, Emerald Queen, Legends Casino, Northern Quest Casino or Silver Reed Casino, just to name few. Those casinos are operated by several Indian tribes. As mentioned above, we don’t recommend playing on offshore sites that accept Washington residents, as the potential penalties are too severe.
Emerald Downs is the only horse racing venue in Washington and the place where all the magic happens as far as pari-mutuel betting is concerned. The state doesn’t allow sportsbook-style wagering, which is horrible news for people who’d like to wager on traditional American sports such as basketball or baseball due to the fact that placing any bets via offshore sites is considered a felony.
Washington poker enthusiasts have plenty of card rooms such as Lucky Dragonz or Golden Nugget to choose from when it comes to live poker games, but the draconian regulations make it very risky for the local gamblers to join the action on one of the nationwide offshore internet poker networks. Regardless of how absurd this whole situation might seem, you have to remember that the possibility of being charged with a felony for breaking the online gambling regulations is very real.
Online Gambling FAQ
Where can I find regulations that pertain to gambling in Washington?
If you’re looking for gambling regulations, you should read Section 9 of Washington Statutes.
What forms of gambling are legal and regulated within the borders of Washington?
Washington legalized and regulated every popular form of gambling with the exception of online play.
What is the legal status of online gambling in Washington?
Online gambling is considered a felony due to a weird regulation that prohibits any transfer of gambling-related information.
Do offshore gambling sites accept Washington residents?
No, much like in the case of Utah many sites prefer to avoid coming in contact with Washington-based gamblers.
How can I deposit to an offshore gambling site from Washington?
Theoretically speaking, you could make a credit card payment. However, we urge you not to do that under the current legal circumstances.
Is Washington planning to regulate online gambling in the future?
Washington lawmakers seem to be unsure about the way they want to respond to the pro-iGaming trend. All we can hope for is that they’ll fix the information transfer law when they start tackling that.
Gambling History – Interesting Facts
1. Washington State Gambling Commission was created in 1973.
2. In 1982 the state announced the launch of its lottery.
3. In 1983, the Lummi Tribe was allowed to open a casino, which was followed by massive gambling operations being opened by the remaining tribes.
4. In 1992, Washington celebrated the launch of the first compacted tribal casino within the borders of the state.
Washington Gambling Resources
Revised Code of Washington:
Washington State Gambling Commission:
List of Casinos in Washington: