Michael Tradford
Last Update:
October 12, 2021
This author was thoroughly tested and approved by the experts at before joining the editorial board to ensure a high content quality.
Author Bio:
Michael was Marketing Director in Atlantic City and worked in the casino industry for several years before shifting over to numerous newspapers in New York and Chicago working his way up to Editor-in-Chief. His focus areas are mainly in the fields of sports, gambling, and politics. He has a Marketing Degree, visited Columbia University during his time in New York and is now Editor-in-Chief at AmericaGambles.
Michael was Marketing Director in Atlantic City and worked in the casino industry for several years before shifting over to numerous newspapers in New York and Chicago working his way up to Editor-in-Chief. His focus areas are mainly in the fields of sports, gambling, and politics. He has a Marketing Degree, visited Columbia University during his time in New York and is now Editor-in-Chief at AmericaGambles.

Minimum Age for online sports betting: When can I play?

As a young prospective Sports bettor, it is important to take note of the legal sports betting minimum age of the State you reside in. There is no universal minimum designated age in the US; therefore, it is pertinent for you as a sports bettor to be aware of the permitted age depending on where you stay. As stated in our detailed text on online sports betting, this is a matter of place and location. That means the legality of your gambling activities is dependent on your place of residence, especially for the budding sports bettors. In the United States, most age restrictions designated by the several States are similar, but as there could be little variances in the permitted ages, you need to be entirely sure about what your state of residence says. The betting age is one of the legal concerns that players have to consider when going into online sports betting.

Everything you need to know about Minimum Age for Online sports betting
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  • Each State determines its legal betting age

  • The standard age for online sports betting is 21

  • A handful of states have expressly allowed residents to operate online sports betting

  • The legal age requirement is a minor factor among the legal requirements

Legality of Online Sports Betting

Just as several activities are in the United States, all forms of sports betting (such as online sports betting) are judiciously regulated. After the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) of 1992 got repealed by the Supreme Court judgment of 2018 in favor of New Jersey, the freedom of new sports betting laws was given. Therefore, a number of states in the country have permitted online sports betting; however, engaging in online sports betting is subject to certain requirements that must be met before a wager on online sports can be made.

Among these requirements include the Legal Age Requirement and State Legality Requirement, (these are discussed in our online sportsbook article), and these legal criteria matter as you do not want to go breaking the law. So, as a sports bettor, before placing any online bet, you’ve got to be old enough and located in the permissible states. Subsequently, the legal requirements of sports betting will be outlined, and the legality of betting age requirements will be discussed in general. After this, a bit of State legality requirements will be discussed.

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Does a designated legal betting age exist in USA?

The general age of adulthood in the United States is 18 years, however, based on the state you reside in, the permitted age may be higher. Therefore, if you wish to know what the legal sports betting age in Pennsylvania is, you may have to crosscheck an answer given to you by a friend from New Jersey and research for answers yourself. Below, we’ve arranged an easy guide which displays the various states that allow online sports betting and permitted ages. It also provides you with a link to get the designated age requirements of your state as well.  To find out how old you’ve got to be to wager on online sports betting legally, read on.

Independent Regulation of Sports Betting by States

After the PASPA which had illegalized online sports betting got repealed, the several states within the United States are now authorized to independently create sports betting laws. Therefore, this implies that the legal betting ages from State to State can differ. Apart from the State of South Carolina, other states have their own betting laws which should be known. Below is a quick overview of the state age requirements to get interested gamblers started. For interested online sport bettors, a summary of legal age requirements for various states is given below.

Legal Ages for Sports Betting in some states

If you’re a budding sports bettor and you’ve been worrying if you’re old enough or maybe you’re wondering if your ward is old enough, then you’re in the right place. Below, an overview is given of the various states which currently offer their residents legal online sports betting as discussed under the State Legality Requirement in our online sports betting article.

  1. Nevada - 21
  2. New Jersey - 21
  3. Pennsylvania - 21
  4. West Virginia - 21
  5. Mississippi - 21

It’s safe to say the standard legal age for online sports betting is 21 years of age. However, this cannot be confidently said to be permanent as various States in 2021 are currently deliberating on the legalization of sports betting and its forms and may promulgate their own preferred legal age of engaging in online sports betting.

Other factors which determine legality of Sports Betting

State of Residence

In sports betting, a player’s age is only one of the deciding factors that determine whether online sports betting is legal or not. The other very important factor is the State of residence of the sports bettor.

Above, the sum of the States whose ages were listed above for legal online sports betting result in five. This is because those are the States which currently permit legal online sports betting regulated by their own State laws. This development arose after the PASPA got repealed and legalized sports betting at the Federal level, with the states in charge of deciding their futures- whether or not they prefer sports betting legalized. Ever since that landmark decision was passed in 2018, several States made sports betting legal and only a handful of states have expressly permitted legal online sports betting. Currently, more states seem to be legalizing sports betting, but as each State in the U.S. is independently authorized, it’s difficult to envisage at what point the other States will legalize sports betting and its other forms.

Wire Act

Based on this 1961 legislation, it is unlawful to lay wagers at sportsbooks situated in another state or country (Wire Art). As a result of this, the various online sportsbooks in the U.S. have effective geolocation tracking tools that ensure players are all within State lines when playing online sports betting for real money. Therefore, as a sports bettor, having the geo-location software downloaded is another factor to be considered, so you must download the geo-location software when accessing these online sports betting sites. Whether it’s your smartphone, PC or Mac, whenever you’re placing online sports bets through your PCs or Macs, you should enable the of a geolocation-tracking software. This allows the online sportsbook to confirm that you’re legally permitted to place online wagers. Therefore, if the geolocation software tracks your movement as outside the authorized State lines, your wager will not be successfully processed. The Use of VPNs are also strongly forbidden, and players found to have used such are heavily fined for their actions.

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Where to Access the Top sportsbooks

Now that you’re aware of the laws on the legal betting age, for prospective players who are above the designated ages placed by the various States, the next process will be identifying the top legal sportsbook in your State. For instance, in states like New Jersey, there are numerous legal online sport betting websites which means it can be a time-consuming process in trying to discover the best legal sportsbooks. As a new player who has recently come of age, you have to take your time to get conversant with the wide variety of options available in your state and ensure you make a suitable and appropriate choice.

However, as a young sports bettor, it could be quite difficult to know which sportsbook you can trust, therefore on our sports betting comparison, we’ve collated a complete review of the various legal online sportsbooks as based on the States that have legalized online sports betting. Simply visit the site for more details you need, you’re also provided with the available sports, such as the National Football league (NFL), basketball etc. as well as strategies to help you in online betting such as the Pleaser betting strategy and other common strategies which are explained in detail. Simply read up our detailed reviews on the various available sites and make sure your selection favors you with great odds and daily or weekly bonuses!

Select your state
Select your state
District of Columbia
New Hampshire
New Jersey
West Virginia
Select your state to find the best operator for you personally.
Sports: 21+
Live Betting:
Min. Odds: -190
Sports: 10+
Live Betting:
Min. Odds: N/A
Sports: 15+
Live Betting:
Min. Odds: -300
Sports: 16+
Live Betting:
Min. Odds: -150 to +10,000
Sports: 20+
Live Betting:
Min. Odds: -200


Just a matter of time
The Legal Age requirement is just a question of time, as was shown above, the states independently designated the legal age to be 21 years old and above. However, it’s just a matter of time and should not be taken sadly by young sports bettors who are not yet 21. The age requirement is hardly a pressing factor when compared with the State Legality factor as this is a location requirement that requires players to be within State lines when betting online. Always keep in mind that these requirements are there to keep you as a sports bettor safe from manipulation and ensure accountability.
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