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Texas Online Gambling Laws

This page is dedicated to taking a look at Texas online gambling laws, land based gambling laws, and where the states stands on gambling in general. We take a look at the current efforts at legalizing online gambling within the state as well. Currently there are not any state online gambling laws which criminalize or prohibit residents from participating in Texas online gambling.

Where Does Texas Stand On Gambling In General?

The definition of bet under Texas gambling laws is short and precise. Gambling is a misdemeanor offence in the state. A bet is an understanding to win or lose something of value in a game or activity that involves chance. The victory or loss must occur by chance either solely or partially. The inclusion of the word partially means that betting on anything that involves any element of chance can run afoul of Texas gambling laws. Gambling device is defined as anything that would allow a player for a consideration, an opportunity to get something of value solely or partially by chance even if some skill is required to get that something of value. Texas law permits social gambling. There is one licensed casino in the lone star state.

Is Private Gambling Legal In Texas?

Gambling at home or a private setting will not generally run afoul of Texas gambling laws as long as no one gets any financial benefit expect personal winnings and everyone has an equal chance of winning. However gambling in a private setting such as a closed room inside a business premises is illegal if the business itself is open to public. Likewise converting a home into a card room and inviting complete strangers to play will also make the home poker game an illegal game under Texas gambling law. The rule is simple. Friendly poker games where the players get the pot are legal but games where the house gets a percentage are illegal. The game will be illegal if the house receives a percentage just to cover the cost of utilities or food.

Is Playing Poker Legal In Texas?

It is illegal in Texas to play and bet for money or anything of value at any game played with balls, dice, cards or other gambling device. Therefore playing poker for money or anything of value will be illegal in Texas. Many restaurants and bars in Texas regularly hold poker tournaments. These tournaments are legal as long as the players do not risk money or anything of value to try to win any prize.

Texas Online Gambling Laws Concerning Poker, Casinos, and Sports Betting

One of the most popular variants of poker is Texas Hold'em Poker. The State officially recognizes Robstown as the birthplace of the game. Texas does not have any laws specifically prohibiting playing online poker. While there are still no online poker sites which are operating within the state of Texas, there are a few secure, high quality, and legal Texas online poker sites which are licensed and regulated outside of the U.S.A.

At present there is no law in Texas that regulates online poker or makes it illegal to play online poker. However there are many bills pending in the state legislature that attempt to regulate or legalize online poker. These include:

All these bills are in various stages and have a long way to go before they are passed and become law.

The attempts to legalize online gambling that is licensed and regulated by the state of Texas is limited to online poker at this time. However there are legal Texas online casinos and Texas online sportsbooks which are licensed, regulated and based outside of the United States. There are not state or federal laws which prohibit players in the USA from participating in online gambling at these sites.

Playing online poker, online casino games or placing online sports bets does not violate any federal law. The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act deals with processing and transfer of funds collected from a gambling activity and does not apply to the players of online gambling. Learn more about USA online gambling laws to take a look at the situation from a Federal perspective.

Texas Gambling Laws

Following is a resource for those interested in reviewing the actual statutes and laws for themselves. You'll find official documentation of the laws in their formal language. Texas Legislature Official Website.

**If you are seeking professional interpretation of any law or statute, we suggest you contact a lawyer, preferably a lawyer who is well versed in online gambling laws. We do not claim to to be lawyers or to hold any degree or certifications in law interpretation. If you are seeking legal advice, we recommend you contact a lawyer as well. We are online gambling consultants and are not qualified to offer legal advice.