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North Dakota Online Gambling Laws

This section of our guide was created to assist gamblers living in or visiting North Dakota in determining what legal options are available to them in both land based gambling and in North Dakota online gambling options. As you will find out in the information below, state law does not address participation in online gambling, including North Dakota online casinos, poker or sports betting. It is not legal to operate an online gambling site within the state, hence legal ND online gambling opportunities are located and regulated outside of the US.

North Dakota Gambling Laws Definitions

North Dakota gambling law has one of the broadest definitions of gambling that one can come across in the United States. The law defines gambling as the risking of credit, money, deposit or anything of value for gain contingent either wholly or in part on chance, lot, the operation of a gambling apparatus or the outcome or happening of an event over which the person who is risking credit, deposit, money or anything of value has no control. Event includes elections and sporting events. Gambling apparatus includes devices, machines, paraphernalia and equipment that can be used or is used in any playing phase of a gambling activity between persons or a gambling activity that involves a machine.

From a player's point of view, the amount of money involved will determine the nature of charge. In the total amount involved in the hand, game or event is less than $25, there is no charge. It is an infraction if the amount is between $25 and $500. When the amount involved is over $500, it is a class A misdemeanor crime. Those who operate an illegal gambling activity, profit from the games, run the games or have an ownership interest in the games will be subject to a felony charge.

North Dakota Gambling Laws Concerning Online Gambling

North Dakota does have forms of regulated gambling. The state constitution must be amended to regulate any new form of gambling. North Dakota gambling laws do not deal with online poker or online gambling. While operating or running an online gambling or online poker site may run afoul of North Dakota gambling law, the law is silent on taking part in an online gambling event or online poker game as mere player. There is no federal law that prohibits taking part in an online gambling event or online poker game as mere player, and this includes the UIGEA bill which was passed in 2006 and regulates how online gambling transactions can be processed, but does not address player participation in online gambling.

History Of North Dakota Gambling Laws

Gambling was rampant when North Dakota gained statehood in 1889 and continued until the later 1900s. Even after the state began to crack down on gambling, charitable gambling was allowed without police interference. In 1976 the voters voted in favor of allowing the state legislature to regulate gambling. The year also saw a constitutional amendment legalizing certain forms of charitable gambling. Bingo, pull tabs, raffles as well as charity blackjack and poker games are legal in North Dakota as part of charitable gambling. The use of video gaming devices for charitable gambling was authorized in 1989 only to be rejected by voters few months later.

Poker Gambling Laws In North Dakota

Home poker games are legal in North Dakota. However the law limits all poker games on private property to $25 or less per hand. Unlike other states, there is no restriction on the house raking the pot or collecting a fee. It is only the amount at hand that matters. It is illegal to operate an online poker room or site within the state of North Dakota. There are no laws prohibiting participation in legally licensed and regulated North Dakota online poker that is located outside of the United States.

North Dakota Horse Racing Gambling Laws

Pari mutuel wagering was legalized in North Dakota in 1987. The first pari mutuel races are held in 1989. In the same year, off track betting was legalized. Today in North Dakota, it is possible to place online bets. There are two horse racing tracks in the state.

Land Based Casino Gambling Laws in North Dakota

When the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act was passed by the Congress in 1989, the state began negotiating with the Indian tribes in the state to set up casinos on Indian reservations in the state. The first compact was signed in 1992. The Spirit Lake tribe opened a small casino in St. Michael in the same year making it the first of the many Indian casinos in North Dakota. Today there are over 30 such Indian casinos and gaming halls. Many of these casinos offer poker. One can legally play a game of poker at such casinos in North Dakota without the fear of violating the state gambling law. Casinos in the state however cannot offer electronic bingo games. Players interested in playing electronic bingo can look into the legal North Dakota online bingo options to see what they have to offer.

North Dakota State Lottery Gambling Laws

North Dakota has a state lottery. It was a late entrant to the lottery scene. The voters voted in favor of the lottery in 2002 and the first lottery ticket was sold in 2004. Unlike other state lotteries, the North Dakota lottery is permitted to offer only multi state games because the constitutional amendment that allowed the state to operate the lottery allowed the state to join a multi state lottery. The amendment does not allow the state to start its own lottery. The state lottery only sells tickets for multi state lotteries and does not offer any North Dakota only lottery.

Efforts To Legalize State Based Online Gambling

There are no pending bills in the state legislature seeking to regulate online gambling. However way back in 2005 State Representative Jim Kasper moved a resolution to amend the state constitution to authorize Internet live poker. The House passed the bill but the Senate rejected it. While several states have legalized online gambling in some form, ND has not yet moved in that direction or shown much interest in it. This being the case, players who are living in or visiting the state can rely on the legally licensed North Dakota sports betting, casino, and poker options that have been serving US players for years. You will find these brands represented throughout this guide.

North Dakota Gambling Laws

Residents and visitors to North Dakota who are interested in reviewing the gambling laws and statutes of the state can access them directly at the North Dakota Legislature Website. They will be found in their entirety and original context.

**This site is intended for informational purposes only, and is not intended to serve as or replace professional legal services. If you are seeking any type of legal services, including advice or professional interpretation of any law or statute, we recommend that you contact an attorney. We are not lawyers and we do not claim to provide any type of legal services.