Legal USA Poker Sites - Which Poker Rooms Are Legal In The US?

The short answer to this common question is a simple "yes." Online poker is generally legal through America. It is only in a short list of nine states that regulations against online gambling and online poker exist in the penal code: Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, South Dakota, Washington, and Wisconsin. Outside of those states, online poker is legal for all American citizens, thanks to a lack of language in the federal penal code.

The only federal laws that exist related to Internet poker play are laws governing how banks can deal with known gambling sites. No federal restriction makes online poker play explicitly illegal.

What Is The Legal Age To Player Poker Online?

Users should check with both the poker site they're going to play at plus their state's gambling laws. Usually, this age is just 18 years old however some states do require slightly higher minimums. In order to be completely safe, we recommend meeting both minimum ages but do know that you only need to meet the minimum age as required by the poker room in order to play online.

Legal Poker Rooms That Welcome U.S.A. Players

Directly below is a review of our best online poker room. This is where we go first when we want to play ring games, tourneys, or whatever. We know that you can trust this room, as well as any other you find on this site. Rely on the site below or any other you find here on for the best places to play poker online anywhere.

- Takes Players From 47 States - No New York, Maryland, Washington

Bovada Poker Room - New Depositors Get 100% To $1K Welcome Bonus

If there was only one online poker room for us to choose, it would have to be Bovada simply because it operates on a level that other sites just don't have the resources to achieve. This site is loaded with many of the latest innovations in the industry plus their network is very reliable. Downtime is never an issue which is a really good thing because there is always something going on here. With all their tourneys, ring games, Sit n Go's plus all the other games besides Texas Hold'Em, you'll have no trouble finding something to keep the action going. And if you ever get tired of online poker, you can always try their online casino or bet sports with just one account.

Wire Act of 1961

The 1961 Federal Wire Act doesn't really apply to US online poker players anymore. In 1961, the US government passed this law to restrict people from placing bets on sporting events via "wire," a word that can be translated pretty much any way the government wants to, including Internet connections that aren't wired at all. Luckily for USA online poker fans, the Wire Act was recently clarified as a restriction against sports bets in general and the providers of illegal gambling in particular.

UIGEA of 2006

The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 was a weak attempt by a Republican congress to make online poker and other games illegal by restricting how banks do business with online casinos, poker rooms, and sports books. Legal loopholes around these financial restrictions exist for US customers that want to make deposits and withdrawals to US-facing poker sites.

State Laws

Nine US states have laws explicitly outlawing online gambling. Rather than digging through all fifty states' penal codes, check out this article for our list of the states where online gambling is punishable by law. Make sure you know the law in your state before you start gambling at any American-facing poker or casino site.

Online Poker Law FAQ

1. Why do some states make online gambling illegal?

In most of the nine states with laws against online gaming and poker play, the restrictions have to do with a lack of ability to verify an online gambler's age. Some states make moral judgment against all forms of betting, including that over the Internet.

2. Is the US government likely to move to ban online poker?

No. It appears the federal government is interested in allowing states to make up their own minds about the legality of online poker play. States like New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Iowa are all set to regulate and tax their own legal poker and gambling sites.

3. How can I help online poker become recognized as a legitimate contest?

Talk to your representatives, both state and local, and tell them that you believe poker is a legitimate game of skill that should be legal for adults of gambling age. If online poker is going to become more legitimate, it needs real people talking to their government officials to back it up.


To make sure you are playing poker on the Internet within the confines of state and federal law, contact a lawyer familiar with your state's gambling laws. We admit that we do not know everything there is from the legal perspective but we do know what to expect when playing online. We want you to be careful and only play with reputable sites that deserve your business.

Bovada Is Legal For All U.S. Players