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Kentucky Online Gambling Laws

The State of Kentucky Gambling Laws primarily support pari-mutuel horse racing. Kentucky residents are currently voicing their desire to expand legalized gambling in Kentucky, pointing to the riverboat casinos in other states, and expanding gaming found at race tracks in neighboring states. Kentucky residents enjoy a great gambling experience as much as anybody else, and they are letting their representatives know that they want more gambling entertainment opportunities to be made available to them, pushing for a change in the KY gambling laws. We anticipate that this will drive change both in land based and online Kentucky gambling.

Kentucky gambling law defines gambling as the act of risking or staking something of value on the result or outcome of a game, contest, gaming device or gaming scheme which is based on an element of chance and upon an understanding or agreement that someone will receive something of value in the event of a specific outcome or result. Below you will find information on how Kentucky state law and/or Federal law impact Kentucky online gambling options.

What Type Of Gambling Is Illegal In Kentucky?

There are no criminal penalties for those who take part in an illegal gambling event exclusively as players. Kentucky gambling law defines a player as someone who engages in gambling solely as a bettor or contestant without receiving or becoming entitled to any profit from the gambling activity other than personal winnings and without providing any material assistance to the operation, conduct and establishment of the gambling activity. However profiting from a gambling activity or advancing a gambling activity are both serious criminal offenses under Kentucky gambling law. Advancing a gambling activity includes all activities that materially assists any form of gambling including (but not limited to) conduct directed towards the establishment of a specific contest, device, game or activity involved in the gambling activity; acquiring or maintaining the premises, equipment, apparatus or paraphernalia used for the gambling activity; soliciting or inducing persons to participate in the gambling activity, conducting the playing phases of the gambling activity and participating in the financial, recording or any other phase of the gambling activity. Profiting from a gambling activity refers to profiting from the operation of an illegal gambling activity. Both are Class A misdemeanor.

Poker Gambling Laws In Kentucky

One can legally play a game of poker in Kentucky, subject to certain conditions. Home poker games are legal as long as they follow the conditions imposed by Kentucky gambling law. The important factor in determining whether or not a home poker game is legal is whether the person organizing the game is promoting gambling. A person promotes gambling when he or she knowingly profits from or advances an illegal gambling activity. A player of a home poker game will be charged with promotion of gambling in the first degree if he or she wins or loses an amount in excess of $500 in a twenty four hour period. This is a class D felony. A felony crime generally carries a jail term exceeding one year and a hefty fine. Home poker games where the house rakes the pot or the players pay a charge to participate are illegal. Hosting or conducting such games is also a class D felony. Legality surrounding Kentucky online poker is discussed in further detail below.

Land Based Gambling Laws In Kentucky

Presently there are no licensed casinos within the state of Kentucky. In February 2012, the state broached the issue of brick and mortar casinos. The Senate voted against letting the voters have a say on the issue. The Governor is making attempts for a casino gambling referendum. Currently there are multiple legal and secure Kentucky online casinos available to players. These sites are located and licensed outside of the USA where they are regulated by governing jurisdictions which have legalized online gambling in their regions.

Charitable Gambling Laws In Kentucky

Charitable gambling including casino nights is legal. The law permits schools, churches and other charitable organizations to operate certain types of games of chance. Even these games are subject to a long list of restrictions. Raffles and bingo are also legal. Players who enjoy playing bingo might want to review information on the legal KY online bingo sites that are available and are considered legitimately licensed, offering a safe and secure gaming environment.

Kentucky Pari-mutuel & Lottery Gambling Laws

Pari-mutuel betting was started in 1878. Kentucky has eight horse racing tracks. Of these eight, two of them offer other betting games in addition to pari-mutuel betting. The first Kentucky Derby was held in 1875. Pari-mutuel betting is available live and online.

In 1988 the residents of the state voted to establish the state lottery commission. The first Kentucky state lottery ticket was sold in 1989. Kentucky was amongst the first states to introduce online lottery ticket machines. The state is a member of a multi state lottery.

Online Gambling Laws in Kentucky

Kentucky was amongst the first states to attempt to regulate and control online gambling. Way back in 2008, the then Governor of Kentucky referred to online gambling sites as leeches that seek to unfairly undermine the state's horse racing industry. Later that year, pushed by the governor, a judge in Kentucky signed an order that allowed the state to seize and take control of 141 internet domain names related to online gambling including many online poker sites. The order was subsequently struck down.

Presently there is no law in Kentucky that prohibits playing online poker, casino games, or sports betting, but operating and maintaining an online poker or gambling site is illegal. Federal laws do not prohibit taking part in a game of online poker. The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 places strict regulatory oversight regarding how online gambling transactions are processed, but does not make participation in an online gambling event illegal.

There are a number of legally licensed and certified online gambling sites which are located, licensed and regulated outside of the United States, and that offer secure and high quality online gambling opportunities to US players, including those from Kentucky. You will find these sites featured throughout this guide and they cover the following gambling venues: Kentucky online sports betting, poker, casino games and bingo.

Kentucky Gambling Laws

For players who want a first hand look at the official laws and statutes concerning gambling in the state of Kentucky, you can visit this site: Kentucky State Legislature. You will find the state's official legislature documents in their original language and context.

**If you are seeking professional interpretation of any law or statute, or any type of professional legal service, we recommend that you contact a lawyer. We are professional online gambling consultants, however we have no formal training in, nor do we hold any degrees or certifications in any type of law. This site is for informational purposes only, and we do not claim to be lawyers or provide legal services.