iGaming is one of the world’s biggest industries, and companies in the sector collectively generate billions of dollars between them each year. However, knowing where you can and cannot operate can be tough to determine.
Some jurisdictions have made gambling illegal but adopt a lenient approach to offshore websites, whereas the penalties for offering or promoting online gambling are strict in others.
Even when it comes to places where iGaming is legal, knowing what you can and cannot offer is important as it can differ from market to market. This is certainly the case in the US where each state is responsible for setting its own rules and requirements.
Where exactly is iGaming legal, then? We’ll look at both a global and US context, and you’ll also learn about places where people cannot gamble and as such affiliates must not target.
Where Is iGaming Legal in the World?
Many Western countries have adopted a liberal approach towards gambling, and perhaps the clearest example of this is the UK. Britain has a well-developed iGaming market, and sports betting is especially popular during the Premier League season – particularly on mobile devices.
Online casino games are also big in the UK, with many of the world’s largest operators offering a whole host of slots, table games, live casinos, and more.
If we look just across the North Sea, iGaming in the Nordics is a little complex. Sweden and Denmark have regulated markets that allow commercial operators to apply for licenses and offer their services to players in those respective countries. But that isn’t the case in Norway and Finland, where iGaming is run through state-owned monopolies.
Elsewhere in Europe, Germany is in the process of reforming its gambling laws to have unified legislation. Online casino games are allowed in Schleswig-Holstein, and online sports betting is legal throughout the country. France also permits online gambling, as do Spain and Italy.
Canada recently revamped gaming legislation that would allow provinces to offer online sports wagering, though online casino gaming remains illegal in most provinces except Ontario which recently opened its doors to legal iGaming.
Where Is iGaming Legal in the US?
Pennsylvania and New Jersey both have regulated online casino markets, and both states permit sports betting too. But apart from those two northeastern states, only four other jurisdictions in the country have legalized online casino gambling:
- West Virginia
As for sports betting, the US has expanded significantly in the past two years. The 2018 repeal of the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act opened the door to legal online sports wagering, and many states have seized the opportunity.
Although Nevada doesn’t allow online casino betting, you can wager on sporting events via your mobile device or computer when within state boundaries.
Washington DC, the country’s capital, also recently passed legislation enabling players to bet on sports. You can do likewise in Tennessee; the state is unique because despite having legal online sports betting, no in-person casinos currently exist there.
In 2020, Louisianan residents had the opportunity to choose whether they wanted sports wagering to become legal in their parish. The majority said yes. Further north, New York has also embraced online sports betting.
Illinois, Michigan, and Indiana are three other states that offer sports betting, and you can also wager on events online in Rhode Island and New Hampshire.
Various other states have permitted online sports betting, and some are in the process of potentially doing so. Meanwhile, some states have not yet chosen to legalize sports betting within state boundaries.
Where Is iGaming Illegal?
In many markets where you can gamble offline, you cannot do so in the online space. Many Middle Eastern countries do not allow online gambling, and the same is true for several parts of Africa – though the likes of Nigeria and Kenya do.
Japan does not allow gambling of any kind, and online wagering is illegal in Singapore. Neighboring Brunei has also banned gambling, and you cannot play online here either.
Another country where you cannot gamble online is China.
Understanding iGaming Laws Is Crucial Before Getting Started as an Affiliate
iGaming laws are complex, and they vary depending on where you are in the world. In many Western countries, you’re allowed to offer online gaming services – but rules aren’t as straightforward as you might otherwise have expected.
If you would like to offer your services as an affiliate, it’s worth doing extra research to determine which markets you can target. Some places have very strict punishments for gambling, and it’s not worth getting yourself into legal trouble.
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