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State-Licensed Sports Betting Reaches New Highs: What First Time Bettors Need to Know

US States and sports betting

Domestic sportsbook options are now available in more than half of the United States. Twenty-six states have gone on to authorize sports betting for their constituents and more are sure to follow.

Given the economic impact from COVID-19, it makes sense that lawmakers are finally budging on state sports betting legislation. With huge sums of money on the table and budget deficiencies nationwide, representatives can no longer turn their noses to such a proposal.

As sports betting increases in both popularity and accessibility, many will be placing wagers for the first time. We decided to be courteous and put together a brief guide for first-time bettors with everything you need to know when it comes to domestic betting.

Laws Vary From State to State

While this may seem obvious, it’s something for new bettors to be aware of. Because sports betting is so new, many of the rules and guidelines are…finicky.

For example, minimum betting ages quickly jump between 18 and 21 across state lines. In some states, sports betting is limited to certain parishes. In others, there are restrictions on what kind of banking account can be used to place bets.

SBL offers readers a directory detailing the gambling laws for each of the sports betting states.

Choosing A Sportsbook

Several sports betting states offer 10 or more sportsbook options for patrons to place wagers. Between retail, mobile, and online sportsbooks, it can be a real headspin to find the right one.

But bettors can and should register with multiple sportsbooks. While bettors don’t need to sign up with every single sportsbook available, it is advantageous to have accounts with 3-5 reputable sportsbooks. This way, patrons can shop the odds and find the best value for their bet.

Don’t Forget About the Feds

The PASPA Act was repealed in 2018, allowing states to have full autonomy over gambling laws. Since then, states that have legalized sports betting are extracting their tax revenues from the sportsbooks themselves.

But that doesn’t mean domestic bettors are free and clear of tax obligations. Like the lottery, all major winnings are subject to taxation and must be reported to the IRS. If you plan on becoming a regular bettor, be sure to consult a tax advisor so you avoid an audit.

Final Notes

All things considered, first-time bettors that plan to play casually can wager with confidence as long as they have a little research on their side.

However, if you plan to take sports betting more seriously it may be smart to consider playing with offshore online sportsbooks. These books are just as legal as state-licensed operations are, in some ways, superior.

Thank you to CNN

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