Florida offers most forms of land-based gambling, including 9 land-based Hard Rock casinos owned by the Seminole Tribe of Florida. The Sunshine State also allows pari-mutuel betting at horse tracks and race tracks, plus jai alai betting at Florida frontons. Florida has legal charitable gambling and casino cruises, though Florida does not allow online casinos, sportsbooks, and poker sites.
That might not be the case soon. Florida is in federal court appealing a judge’s decision to ban a sports betting compact signed with the Seminole Tribes. If allowed, the deal would allow the land-based casinos and pari-mutuel race tracks to offer online and mobile sports betting. Keep reading for more on Florida’s land-based gambling industry and its attempts to create licensed mobile and online sports betting, plus its offshore online casino and poker niche.
Florida Gambling Laws at a Glance
- Legal Gambling: Land-Based Casino (domestic), Casino Cruises (offshore), Online/Mobile Casino (offshore)
- Minimum Gambling Age in Florida: 21 (domestic), 18 (through offshore sites)
- Retail Sports Betting in Person: Banned: Current Appeal in Federal Court
- Online Casinos: Offshore
- Online Poker Sites: Offshore
- Online Sportsbooks: Offshore
- Live/In-Play Betting: Offshore
- College Sports Betting: Offshore
- Horse Racing: Domestic and offshore
- Estimated Sports Betting Revenue: To Be Determined
- Licensed Sports Betting Operators: None
- Online Gambling Licensing Fee: To Be Determined
- Tax Rate: To Be Determined
- Tax Funded: To Be Determined
Florida Online Gambling Laws Timeline
- March 23, 2014: Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll Resigns: In 2014, the media reported that Allied Veterans of the World, a charity organization based in St. Augustine, Florida, had collected $300 million in winnings from Internet sweepstakes cafes but had only donated $6 million to charities. Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll’s association with Allied Veterans as a paid consultant led to her resignation from office.
- April 10, 2014: Rick Scott Bans Internet Sweepstakes Cafes: Florida Governor Rick Scott took action following the Allied Veterans scandal by signing HB 155, a bill that prohibited Internet sweepstakes cafes. This legislation gained support due to the association made between sweepstakes cafes and online gambling by some Florida politicians, although the connection was not widely substantiated.
- April 3, 2014: Rick Scott Opposes Online Gambling: Rick Scott publicly expressed his opposition to online gambling in Florida. He stated, “While a nationwide ban would be preferable, I support a ban on internet gaming in Florida.” Opponents of online gambling, including Rick Scott, referred to Section 849.08 of the Florida Constitution, specifically highlighting the phrase “by any device whatever” in the following context: “Whoever plays or engages in any game at cards, keno, roulette, faro, or other game of chance, at any place, by any device whatever, for money or other thing of value, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree.”
- September 27, 2018: Ron DeSantis Opposes Online Gambling: During the 2018 gubernatorial campaign, Republican candidate Ron DeSantis expressed opposition to gambling expansion, without explicitly stating his stance on online gambling. Then-Representative DeSantis emphasized the importance of maintaining Florida as a family-friendly state, saying, “I do not advocate for the expansion of gambling.”
- October 2018: Opposition to Amendment 3: The focus at the time was on DeSantis’s opposition to Amendment 3. Reports in Florida newspapers suggested that he received financial support from opponents of Amendment 3 and worked as a paid consultant for Sheldon Adelson, a casino mogul who opposes online gambling through the Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling (CSIG). Thus, Governor Ron DeSantis seemed to be a dedicated opponent of online gambling in Florida.
- February 15, 2019: Raids on Online Sweepstakes Cafes: Local law enforcement carried out raids on four sweepstakes cafes, namely Times Square Internet Sweepstakes Cafe, Lucky You 777, Cafe Gold Mine, and Dragon House. These raids followed similar operations conducted in February 2018 and October 2018. Editorials in Florida newspapers called for ongoing crackdowns on Internet sweepstakes cafes, urging Attorney General Ashley Moody to prosecute the cafe owners.
- April 23, 2021: Florida Governor Signs Mobile Sports Betting Bill: Ron DeSantis signed a 5-year gaming compact with the Seminole Tribe of Florida to authorize sports betting throughout the state. The deal promised $2.5 billion in new revenue over the next 5 years and an estimated $6 billion by 2030. The compact gives the Seminole Tribe the right to offer online and mobile sports betting to Florida residents. The deal also protects pari-mutuel wagering by allowing race tracks to participate in the tribe’s sports betting compact.
- November 23, 2021: Federal Judge Strikes Down Florida Online Sports Betting: U.S. District Judge Dabney Friedrich struck down the State of Florida’s sports betting compact with the Seminole Tribe of Florida. Calling the deal “a fiction”, the judge ruled that the deal violates the 1988 Indian Gaming Regulatory Act about legal gambling on Native American lands. Federal law allows tribes to host gambling on their lands, but the judge says it cannot be argued that online and mobile casinos do not take place on those lands (even if servers are hosted there).
- December 22, 2022: Florida Appeals Sports Betting Ban: Florida asks a federal appeals court to reverse Judge Friedrich’s 2021 decision on the state’s sports betting compact with the Seminole Tribe of Florida. At present, the appellate court has not ruled on the case.
The Best Florida Online Casino Sites List 2023
|Florida Online Casino||Best Feature|
|MyBookie Casino||Best Combination Online Casino and Sportsbook|
|Big Spin Casino||The Best for Online Casino Table Games and Live Dealer Games|
|XBet Casino||Solid Combination of Casino Games, Sports Bets, and Live Casino Games|
My Bookie Casino
Is you want real money online casino gambling in Arizona, then MyBookie Casino is one of the best choices you can make. MyBookie has made a sterling reputation for itself since it launched in 2017, offering casino games, live dealer games, and sports bets. Whichever betting options you prefer, you’ll find a full range of gambling games.
MyBookie’s welcome bonus gives players a 150% match offer up to $750. Make a $500 deposit to max out the offer, then clear the 40x rollover requirement. If you prefer, you can accept a 10%, $200 first deposit cash bonus with a 1x rollover requirement. Casino players receive 50 free spins offer on deposits over $50 on Wednesday and a Weekend Casino Bonus of 200% up to $500 on deposits over $100.
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What We Like:
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Big Spin Casino
If you want a site a specialty gambling site that focuses only on casino games, Big Spin Casino is an option. Big Spin Casino features hundreds of online slots, but it also has so much more than that. The social games section also features several Keno variants, plus a large list of online scratch cards. Meanwhile, you can enjoy 64 different table games ranging from a dozen blackjack games to VIP European Roulette. Enjoy craps, baccarat, several types of roulette, and Casino Hold’em. Play less well-known games like 6Up Pocket Poker, Casino Solitaire, Ride’m Poker, Bonus Texas Hold’em, Blackjack 11, and Oasis Poker.
Big Spin Live Casino
The live dealer casino has all of the games you’d expect in an American live casino: Live Blackjack, Live Baccarat, Super 6, Live American Roulette, and Live European Roulette. The live blackjack games have bet limits between $10 and $2500, so you should find a game that appeals to you. Early Payout Blackjack is an option, though we wouldn’t recommend it. Live Roulette has betting options between 50 cents a spin and $12,000 a spin, so the bet range is huge.
Big Spin Casino features a 200% signup bonus up to $1000, a 100% reload bonus up to $1000, and a 250% Weekend Reload Bonus up to $2000. It’s rare to find a reload bonus that’s better than the first deposit offer, so pay special attention to the Weekend Reload Bonus. Because it’s redeemable many times (once a week), it’s the most lucrative bonus at Big Spin Casino. If you don’t make sports bets, Big Spin Casino is a great gambling site option.
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What We Don’t Like:
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XBet Casino is comparable to MyBookie Casino, though we place it here because its bonus is less lucrative. When it comes to casino games, XBet has everything you would want: hundreds of slots, table games, and video poker games. It has live dealer games, social games, 3D slots, and tournaments.
XBet Casino Live has huge bet limits. Live Blackjack’s min and max bets are a more standard $10 to $2,500, while the Live Roulette games range from 50 cents a spin to $12,500 a spin. Enjoy Live Blackjack, Baccarat, Super 6, American Roulette, and European Roulette.
One thing that sets XBet apart is its online sportsbook. Bet on any sporting event that Americans find important, including NFL games, MLB, NBA, NHL, UFC, NCAA games like CFF and CFB, and NASCAR. Make a wide range of bets on the Phoenix Cardinals, Arizona Diamondbacks, Phoenix Suns, or Arizona Rattlers.
What We Like:
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What We Don’t Like:
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How to Gamble Online in the United States