Gambling laws in Maryland allow multiple forms of regulated betting entertainment to take place, including casino and poker gambling, pari-mutuel wagering on horse races, a state lottery, charitable gaming, and daily fantasy sports contests.
State lawmakers and the state’s citizens are clearly open to the development of a thriving gambling industry within their respective territory. The state’s willingness to regulating daily fantasy sports contests suggests openness towards sports-related wagering.
This page will focus specifically on how online sports betting figures into the gambling market in Maryland. We will discuss the gambling laws in Little America and their relevance to sportsbook gambling. We will also discuss relevant US federal laws and the role they play in the governing of sports betting across the nation. Legal online sports betting is available to Maryland gamblers if you know where to look and what legalities you must be mindful of.
Selectively and thoughtfully choosing your online bookmaker destination will be a vital factor in determining what is legal vs illegal when betting on sports. This guide will assist you in making an informed decision by systematically breaking down relevant elements through comprehensive explanations about the pertinent legal landscape of Maryland’s betting entertainment
Best Online Sportsbook
Accepting Maryland Players
Betonline Sportsbook welcomes customers from the US in general, including those from Maryland. This sportsbook also accepts international players. New players are offered a nice 50% match bonus up to $1,000 on their first deposit. Returning players are entitled to a 25% match bonus on all deposits into their account for as long as they remain a customer at Betonline. They cover all the major events, including some interesting. This brand operates with very high standards and their 20+ years in the business shines through their secure, high quality and legally sanctioned betting environment that includes live betting and a sophisticated mobile betting app. We can easily recommend them as the premium options for sports fans in Maryland.
Is Online Sports Betting Legal In Maryland?
Would we sound wishy washy if we said yes and no? Maybe so, but that actually is the correct response. Sports betting is both legal and illegal in Maryland, depending on where you are placing your bets. State gambling laws and statutes don’t address online gambling specifically with the exception of DFS. This means that it is not legal to own or operate any type of online gambling site within the borders of Maryland, but it is permitted to participate in daily fantasy sports contests through online businesses regulated to provide this type of service to residents of the state. To be perfectly honest, the fact that Maryland has not legalized any type of online gambling as of yet is not the reason you won’t find any online bookmakers licensed by the state.
Due to provisions imposed by the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, Maryland was not allowed to enact sports betting laws from 1992-2018. Neighboring state Delaware was one of the four states exempted from PASPA, but sadly only offered extremely limited sports-related betting options. Maryland currently has a domestic sports betting bill awaiting approval from state legislatures but until it passes, offshore online sports betting is Maryland's only option.
The Federal Wire Act outlaws the operation of any type of US-based online sports betting across state lines. USA sports betting laws are changing across the country. Over half the US-states are currently trying to enact some sort of sports betting law. Another federal law preventing operators from operating online in the USA is the UIGEA act, which makes it illegal for financial institutions to process payments from known gambling operations. Together these two laws prevent online sports betting across state lines.
To sum things up, US-based online sports betting is not an option for Maryland residents short of a trip to Vegas or a dramatically sparse offering of limited parlay bets in Delaware. However, there is a silver lining here. None of the state gambling laws or the federal gambling laws discussed above prevent Maryland’s residents from participating in licensed and regulated online sports betting through legitimate sportsbooks located offshore. When we say legitimate, we mean a high-quality online sports betting site that is licensed, regulated and located outside of United States borders within a governing jurisdiction that has expressly legalized online sports betting. The bookmakers that are operating legitimately within the industry can legally accept bets from gamblers in the US.
You will find a list of recommended legal online sports betting sites on this page. Each of them has been carefully vetted by our team through an intense review process that effectively determines their legitimacy and quality. The ones that made it onto our list exceed minimal industry standards and licensing requirements, deliver a safe and sophisticated betting environment, and competitive betting lines and wagering options.
Do Federal Gambling Restrictions Affect Maryland?
Since Maryland has recently legalized casino gambling, in effect, many people want to know whether or not the federal government is going to override the state's laws and start prosecuting people who gamble or who offer games of chance in a for-profit capacity. And this is a very legitimate concern. Their legalization of gambling is perfectly legal inside of the framework of the Constitution. In other words, although certain aspects of gambling are still illegal per federal regulations, Maryland was perfectly within its rights to sanction state-licensed gambling within its borders.
There's really nothing the federal government could do, at least not without creating an epic war on states' rights that no politician in Washington would ever really want to fight. Even if they won, they'd still lose, because the electorate would view such a politician as a usurping dictator. So the federal government isn't going to challenge Maryland. If MD says gambling is legal there in a certain capacity, then gambling is legal. The exception would be sports betting, which the federal government has outlawed in all except for four specific regions, and Maryland is not one of them.
But on a federal level, there are still certain things Maryland cannot do due to the federal regulations on the books. For instance, Maryland can allow for a variety of casinos and state-licensed games and suchlike, but they cannot break federal law via the Federal Wire Act and just start allowing people to own or operate an online sportsbook within the state. Maryland would also have to comply with the UIGEA law should they choose to establish any type of online casino or poker gambling platform. This law provides regulatory requirements concerning how online gambling related transactions can be processed and applies to US-based banks and credit card companies.
Your Maryland Gambling Options
Since legalized casino gambling is still brand new in Maryland, you have to take the good with the bad. On the good side of things, their casinos are brand new, state-of-the-art establishments that have all the bells and whistles, beautiful rooms, spas, etc. They're gorgeous landmarks that bring people in from all up and down the eastern seaboard. On the negative size, of course, you don't have a lot of places from which to choose. Your options are rather limited since the state hasn't had enough time, nor enough revenue, to start building their own version of Atlantic City within the state.
At the moment, there are five casinos operating within Maryland's borders, with the oldest opening in 2010. Time flies by so quickly that, for many of you out there, it probably feels like it was just 2010 yesterday, so Maryland's casinos aren't old by any stretch of the imagination. Their oldest casino is the Hollywood Casino in Perryville. This is a location that has tons of slot machines, table games, and more. They also have brand new locations, such as the Horseshoe Casino in Baltimore. This is a huge location with over 2,500 slot machines, 120 table games, and a gigantic poker room that's themed after the World Series of Poker (WSOP), and it even has some professional poker players who stop by occasionally. Perhaps the city's most popular casino is Maryland Live, located in Hanover. This is a gargantuan casino, in the context of state-based casinos, and it opened in three phases just to get it done. The 3,200 slot phase opened first in 2011, with another 1,500 machines added in 2012. In 2013, another addition hit Maryland Live and it got some table games. Just last year, a two-story poker room opened up in the casino, making it one of the go-to destinations of the entire state.
And if these casinos aren't enough to satisfy Marylanders, then the MGM Grand was just awarded a license last year to open up shop in the state, with a casino that is estimated to cost $925 million! Slated to open its doors in 2016, this casino will easily rival a Vegas casino and feature every type of option you could imagine for a casino. You can also find horse racing and sports betting in Maryland, though they're in limited supply. What's most popular in the state is slots, table games and poker rooms. It stands to reason that despite the state licensed options, many players will still prefer the convenience of online gambling and the option of legal sports betting, which can be legally enjoyed through licensed offshore gambling sites.
Baltimore's Big Two
While the Washington Redskins play inside of Maryland via FedEx Field, they're still a DC team and not a Maryland team. Calling the Redskins a Maryland team would be like calling the New York Jets or Giants New Jersey teams. They might play there, but they're still New York teams. And even though there is a hefty Redskins fan base inside of Maryland, most Marylanders love their big two teams out of Baltimore: The Baltimore Orioles and the Baltimore Ravens. Baltimore has a rather long history of professional teams. Many from Maryland may still remember the Baltimore Colts before they moved to Indianapolis. The Colts ultimately became the Ravens, and Marylanders aren't upset about the change. The Ravens have won two Super Bowls in recent memory, with the latest coming only three seasons ago when they defeated the San Francisco 49ers in a fantastic game that pitted brother against brother via the head coaches, John and Jim Harbaugh.
Betting On The Baltimore Orioles
The Orioles are a team adored by more than Marylanders. Playing small-market baseball, which means they don't have those obscene contract numbers, the Orioles are like the underdog team, ala Rocky Balboa, that people just love to root for. They play in the same division with the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox, the two biggest payrolls in all of professional sports, so Marylanders love rooting for their Orioles to finally get over the hump. They don't have a long tradition of winning games, but they do have a long tradition of having some tough ball players. Cal Ripken, Jr. was an Oriole and ended up becoming the true iron man of baseball, playing in 2,632 consecutive games over 16 seasons. Cal played through tears, breaks and sprains, concussions and lacerations, and more. No matter what was wrong with him, he suited up and took the field, and this embodied the Maryland spirit of hard work and determination, and it's still one of the biggest reasons that the Orioles are so popular in Maryland.
Betting On The 2019 Baltimore Ravens
Following QB Joe Flacco’s hip injury in Week 9, rookie Lamar Jackson took over for a failing Baltimore team. However, the run-heavy offense and strong defense won six of the last seven games and claimed the team’s first AFC North title since 2012.
The team’s defense lost key players to the free agency market, including C.J. Mosley, Za’Darius Smith, and Terrell Suggs. Despite this, plenty of returning players are set to keep the Raven’s defense tough.
If Jackson can be the quarterback the team needs, the defense should carry the team the rest of the way into the playoffs.
Super Bowl LIV Odds to Win: +3300