Arkansas Sports Betting – Bet On Sports Legally In AR
Betting - and gambling as a whole - was previously restricted in Arkansas. However, the Natural State launched domestic sports betting on July 1st, 2019. Anyone 21 years of age or older can now legally bet on sports at domestic casinos or online with offshore sportsbooks.
Sports betting was passed by a voter referendum in November of 2018. Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort was the first to begin accepting wagers. In October 2019, the tribal Saracen Casino Resort also started accepting wagers, with the Southland Casino later following suit. The fourth approved venue is TBA.
Is Sports Betting Legal In Arkansas?
Yes. The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA) was struck down by the Supreme Court in May 2018, opening the door for AR and other states to pass domestic sports betting laws. In 2018 the state legalized state-licensed sports betting via voter referendum.
Now in addition to offshore sportsbooks, AR residents can bet at domestic casinos and racetracks licensed to offer sports betting. Arkansas state laws have no mention of placing bets with an offshore sportsbook and no prohibitions for offshore online gambling and is one of the many states that permit betting on sports through these offshore options.
Arkansas Sports Betting Laws
After the AR state legislature passed a bill and the governor signed it into law, voters in the state approved a ballot measure known as "Issue 4" during the 2018 midterm elections that legalized and authorized sports betting at four land-based casinos in Arkansas. The state-regulated sportsbooks launched on July 1st at one location (Oaklawn), with more licenses issued thereafter (Saracen, Southland).
Arkansas Sports Betting Bills
Arkansas does not have any new pending legislation relevant to sports betting at this time. Should they present any new bills that expand and/or change existing regulations, we will update that information here.
Top Online Sportsbooks For Arkansas Residents
Below you will find a list of the top reviewed offshore sports betting sites legally accepting AR residents. We only include the most reputable legal online sportsbooks for players in the United States and can recommend these destinations without hesitation.
These sportsbooks maintain a strong reputation among both bettors and industry professionals and are known for providing a wide range of betting lines and odds that are comparable with the Vegas bookmakers.
You will find that they each provide attractive bonus offers, a strong selection of sports coverage, an efficient and secure banking suite, and overall high-quality betting experience.
Currently, the Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort, the Saracen Casino Resort, and the Southland Casino have licenses to offer domestic sports betting. Oaklawn is located in Hot Springs Arkansas, about an hour west of Little Rock. They are probably most known for their horse racing but they have plans to build a $100 million expansion project with plans to incorporate sports betting into the existing racebook on the casino floor. The Saracen Casino Resort is a tribal venue in Pine Bluff, and Southland is in West Memphis.
AR Sports Betting Details
The following details are to be enforced by the Arkansas Racing Commission (ARC). The ARC will oversee the sports betting industry in the state, collect taxes, and issue operating licenses.
- Legal Sports Betting: In-state + offshore
- Minimum Sports Betting Age: 21 years old
- Land-Based: Four Locations (three operational as of March 2020)
- Online: Offshore Only
- Mobile: Offshore Only
- In-Play: Offshore Only
- Estimated Revenue: $50M+
- Eligible Operators: Oaklawn, Southland, Saracen, TBD
- Commission: Arkansas Racing Commission
- Licensing Fee: $250,000 max.
- Tax Rate: 13%
- Tax-Funded: State general revenue, Racing Commission purses
What You Can Bet On In Arkansas:
- All betting lines, odds, and props for all games, teams, and players across all college and professional sports are allowed at domestic venues and offshore sites
What You Can't Bet On In Arkansas:
- High school athletics
- eSports, entertainment betting
- No restrictions offshore
Where Can I Bet On Sports In Arkansas?
- Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort
- Saracen Casino Resort
- Southland Casino
Biggest Sports Betting Cities In Arkansas
As mentioned earlier, college sports reign supreme in the state. Residents have it easy when picking which team to rally behind, as the University of Arkansas Razorbacks are the most dominant team in the state. Some fans may choose the Arkansas State Red Wolves, but the Sun Belt Conference is nowhere near as exciting as the SEC.
Although the Razorbacks are in a tough conference, they are a sleeper team to watch and could be a potential underdog. Whichever local team you support, you can find betting lines on their major programs via the offshore sports wagering destinations listed on this page. If you are interested in betting on a team outside of Arkansas, you will find plenty of options, both domestic and international.
Little Rock is the capital and most populated city in the state of AR. While there are no professional teams in Little Rock they are a sports town with a minor league baseball team (Arkansas Travelers), and the Little Rock Trojans (NCAA). Sports betting in Little Rock is often centered around the Arkansas Razorbacks out of nearby Fayetteville, but residents are free to wager on any team at an online sportsbook that services the US.
Frequently Asked Questions About Arkansas Sports Betting
Will I get arrested for betting on sports in Arkansas?
Nope. Since the state has legalized local sports betting, and offshore sports betting has never been prohibited in Arkansas, then you will not be violating any state or federal laws by participating in licensed sports betting.
Are mobile sports betting apps legal in Arkansas?
There has been no mention of mobile betting in the recently adopted sports betting legislation in Arkansas. However, to bet from your smartphone or tablet, you can access any of our recommended sportsbooks through your mobile device's browser.
The betting apps provided by these brands are all web-based, mobile-optimized applications, so simply navigating to them on your phone will take you to their betting app.
What teams can I bet on in Arkansas?
Once all the sportsbooks actually launch in Arkansas, we will know precisely what is and is not restricted at the state level. As far as offshore sportsbooks go, they do not restrict any players from placing bets on professional, collegiate, domestic or International teams, athletes and leagues.
Are there any local sports books in Arkansas?
Yes. The Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort is now accepting bets on sports, as is the Saracen Casino Resort and the Southland Casino. There are plans for one more domestic sportsbook, but that license has yet to be issued.
What is the legal minimum sports betting age in Arkansas?
Arkansas has established the legal minimum gambling age for sports betting to be 21 years of age. Though most reputable online sportsbooks accept bettors at age 18, this policy would conflict with the state's regulations. All of our recommended sportsbooks expect customers to be aware of and adhere to their state's minimum gambling age.
Who regulates sports betting in Arkansas?
Sports betting is regulated and overseen by the Arkansas Racing Commission. The ARC is responsible for issuing licenses, collecting taxes, and enforcing regulations.
Arkansas Legislative Resources
If you're from Arkansas and you'd like to express your opinion or see something changed regarding the outlook of sports betting in the state, then below we've included some resources you might find helpful. These resources will allow you to contact the governor, senators, and representatives, so you can be sure they know where you stand on sports betting in the state of Arkansas.
AR Gambling Resources
We acknowledge that gambling and sports betting can be addictive if not done in a responsible manner, which, in turn, can have devastating consequences in your everyday life if you aren't prepared. If you've lost control of your gambling habits, do not hesitate to contact the National Council On Problem Gambling in Arkansas.