The Law of Online Gambling in New Jersey

New Jersey's foray into online gambling began in 2011, with legislation permitting internet betting exclusively for New Jersey residents over 21, anchored to Atlantic City's casinos to comply with the state constitution.

This move positioned New Jersey as a pioneering state in the online gambling sector, heralding a significant source of revenue and setting a precedent for interstate online gaming agreements.

Legislative Process

The path to legalizing online gambling in New Jersey began with Senator Raymond Lesniak's introduction of a bill in January 2011. The legislation aimed to allow New Jersey residents over 21 to gamble online, requiring servers to be in licensed Atlantic City casinos to comply with state laws.

Despite innovative measures to navigate federal restrictions, Governor Chris Christie vetoed the bill over concerns about the potential spread of gambling outside Atlantic City and the bill's perceived legal loopholes.

Legal Context

In December 2011, the US Justice Department clarified that the Federal Wire Act only restricts online sports betting, not online casino games. This opinion supported New Jersey's move to legalize online gambling, backed by John Wefing, a constitutional scholar at Seton Hall Law School. Wefing argued that no constitutional amendment was needed for online gambling, as a bet is finalized when an Atlantic City server accepts it.

State Senator Jennifer Beck believed voter approval was necessary for legalization. This indicates a complex legal landscape influenced by federal court decisions and the online bet's placing based on the website and gambler's location.

Law Revision and Approval

To address concerns raised by Governor Christie, a revised bill was created. It limited online gambling advertising and operations to Atlantic City casinos only. This move effectively excluded businesses outside these casinos from participating or promoting online gambling.

Christie signed this bill into law on February 26, 2013, legalizing online gambling for a decade. The law confined casino website activities to Atlantic City's casinos and imposed a 15% tax on online gambling revenues, a notable increase from the 8% tax applied to physical casinos.

The legislation also set the minimum gambling age at 21, mandated physical presence in New Jersey for gambling, and allowed the use of GPS to verify gambler locations. It paved the way for potential interstate gambling agreements and required in-person redemption of comps at casinos.

Following this legal framework, New Jersey's online gambling industry was launched on November 21, 2013. It gradually expanded to offer various games and successful online poker rooms, significantly boosting the state's gambling revenue.

Final Thoughts

Online gambling has proven to be a lucrative enterprise in New Jersey, generating billions in revenue and providing employment opportunities. FanDuel Casino: Real Money Gaming in NJ, a leading online casino in New Jersey, has contributed significantly to this growth.

The law's successful implementation and subsequent expansion through interstate agreements have boosted state revenues and set a precedent for other states to consider legalizing online gambling as a potential source of revenue.