Online Poker in the US
The history of online poker in the US is as long as its history worldwide, and some of the first operators started in the US. Several online poker sites launched in the US before the internet was even a decade old, including partypoker and Planet Poker. The original partypoker did not have a license to operate in the United States, and was the only one operating in the US at the time. However, that has since changed.
Although the US lacks a federal regulatory framework for online poker, it has legalized the practice in four states. Poker is currently legal in Nevada, which has passed legislation that bans poker sites from operating there after 2006. However, Pennsylvania and New Jersey have not adopted any such legislation. Until the law is amended, no online poker sites can operate in New York. It is not clear when New York will finally legalize online poker. Despite this rocky road, advocates of online poker are hopeful for a legalization in the state of New York.
Online poker offers the chance to play with a variety of stakes and player pools. Those in the US can enjoy the largest player pools, but there are many smaller games available as well. Some online poker sites allow players to deposit in a variety of currencies, but they generally convert funds at a much lower rate than banks do. However, players should remember not to spend all their money in one session, so it is recommended to spread your funds out.
Although gambling in online poker is legal in some US states, players should still check with local authorities before gambling in the USA. New Jersey is the leading US online poker market and helped lead the legal effort to legalize it in the US. There are numerous licensed online poker sites operating in New Jersey. Michigan has the largest population of poker players in the US and hosts some of the largest online tournaments and prize pools. Pennsylvania recently made online poker legal, and has built a massive industry around it.
Although Nevada was the first state to legalize online poker, it was only the third to do so in the country. Despite the federal government’s decision, online poker is still not regulated in all 50 states. Moreover, the new opinion on the Wire Act issued by the Office of Legal Counsel replaced the RAWA bills. Pennsylvania is currently the fourth state to regulate online poker. The US is increasingly embracing online gambling, and Pennsylvania is one of the first to join the multi-state network.
Legality of online poker in the US is an issue that is continually contested. The new forms of US online poker have defied decades-old gambling laws, and challenges to these laws are being tested in courtrooms across the nation. State-by-state legislatures are reexamining the issues surrounding online poker as a means of ensuring that the gaming industry remains competitive and continues to generate revenue. This is an issue that requires careful investigation.