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Gambling In West Virginia: Full Overview 2020

West Virginia Global State Header
Online Casino
(legal since: 03/28/2019)
Online Poker
(legal since: 03/28/2019)
Online Sports
(legal since: 03/10/2018)
Online Lotto
(legal since: 03/28/2019)
Online DFS
(legal since: 03/28/2019)

One of the newer states to begin allowing many different types of wagering has been West Virginia, with West Virginia casino action getting more and more exciting for players who want to do their betting online. The state's online casino betting situation will see online casino play become possible in the near future. Sports betting online in West Virginia has already received the green light. And the anticipation has begun building for online poker players who will be free to play in the state in the near future as well. With so many exciting developments in the state, it's a great time to be a gambler in West Virginia.

In this guide to casino gambling in West Virginia, find out the answer to the question of are casinos legal along with other important information that bettors should know before they get set to place their bets in casinos, sportsbooks, and everything else that is offered.

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West Virginia gambling history and social importance

History: One of the first gambling states

When it comes to the West Virginia casino and gambling history, it has been a relatively interesting story for the state as a whole. Horse racing was one of the first ways to gamble in America, and it was the first way to bet legally in this state, with horse racing betting being made legal in 1931. After that, bingo action became legal to kick off the 1980s, with the state lottery being introduced just a few years later in 1984. It wasn’t until 1994 that slots became an option, as each racetrack began being permitted to operate new slot machines with bars to follow soon after.

The new gap between a racetrack and casinos being free to offer table games in this state was a long one, with table games not being approved for action in West Virginia until 2008. And with the wave of legalization that has taken place in the United States over recent years, 2019 marked a huge milestone as sports betting and online casino and poker play were introduced as new legal options in the state to round out the list of betting options up for grabs in the state.

Social importance: Part of the identity

For the state of West Virginia, the social importance of this kind of gaming cannot be understated. Wagering as a whole is becoming more and more popular as more options become available and people become more educated about the topic as a whole. And the proximity of West Virginia to states like Pennsylvania and Virginia make this state an attractive destination for legalized wagering as it could make the state more of a destination for people who want to do some sophisticated betting. As industries around the country rise and fall, West Virginia’s positioning on the cutting edge of betting could make it a leader in this emerging area of business in the US.

West Virginia

Legal situation of casinos and online casinos in West Virginia 2020

Land-based casinos: Decent list of choices

Casinos in west Virginia do indeed exist in a land-based format, as players have the ability to take part in casino games at seven brick and mortar locations throughout the state. As of right now, these seven physical casinos are the only places where players are free to place their bets, which makes for an entertaining experience for those who are free to get to those locations. That situation is set to change with the impending introduction of online casino play in the state, which we will get to shortly. But for now, physical casinos are the only game in town.

Legal situation for land-based casinos: Legal casino action

When it comes to land based casinos in West Virginia, the beginning of casino play started in 1994 when the state authorized online slots at the state’s racetrack choices. That soon after expanded to the ability to play slots at bars, so long as the names of those establishments had nothing to do with wagering. Since then, table games were added, and the legal status of land-based casinos hasn’t been questioned since as these are an integral part of the state’s gaming profile. In the future, legal online casino play will be licensed through land-based casino operators.

Online casinos: Coming soon

West Virginia gambling is set to add online wagering to its repertoire, thanks to the fact that online wagering was passed in March of 2019. For the time being, players will have to wait to begin betting on casino games online in earnest, but that shouldn’t stop the excitement from players who have been waiting to get in on the online casino action that they have craved for a long time. At long last, there is a light at the end of the tunnel for these bettors, even if the wait time they have had to experience to get there has been longer than they’d have liked.

Legal situation for online casinos: Finally legal

West Virginia online casino gaming was made legal by House Bill 2934, which authorizes West Virginia online gambling in casino play along with other facets of wagering as well. Worth noting about this is the fact that bettors will have to wait until at least 2021 to place online casino bets, as that has been named as the earliest point in time where online operators will be free to offer casino action to their players on the internet. Until then, players will have to stick with some of the land-based casino options that exist throughout the state.

Market prediction for the future

In the future, the West Virginia casino map will get more crowded with the introduction of online casino play in 2021. While the exact shape of the online casino industry in the state isn’t entirely clear yet given how long it will be before the state introduces that action to players, one would think that it will look a lot like what players see in other states where land-based casinos in the state will run the show. This will provide a strong product that shouldn’t take much time to get off the ground once launched, given that the existing casino brands should be free to attract partnerships from strong brands like other states have seen.

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Legal situation of sports betting and online betting in West Virginia 2020

Land-based betting operators/racetrack: Up and running

Is sports betting legal in West Virginia? The answer to that question is yes, as of the year 2018. Since then, West Virginia moved quickly to get sports betting up and running in the state, with several physical locations being up for grabs for players to make their wagers. The first wagers in the state were accepted in 2019, as the books were free to get everything set up and ready for action before the start of the football season, which is the most lucrative time for a sportsbook to operate by far.

Legal situation for land-based betting operators/racetrack options: No problems at all

Is gambling legal in West Virginia? For sports bettors, the answer is yes. This was thanks to Senate Bill 415 that deemed the activity legal in 2018 along with the lifting of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) in 2018 after it was deemed unconstitutional. Those rulings combined helped to bring sports betting into the mainstream in West Virginia, where it is likely to stay thanks to the popularity of the industry around the country as well as around the state. Right now, three casinos are offering land-based sports betting, and it will be interesting to see if more are added as time goes on.

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Online sports betting: Legal and active

The West Virginia online casino industry is in its infancy with casino betting, but West Virginia online gambling with regard to sports is already underway. Casino apps for as much were launched in 2018 before being taken down due to technological issues. But since then, industry leaders have stepped in and started offering online and mobile sports wagering across the state in 2019, with things being likely to stay in place this time as the industry continues to grow in West Virginia the way that it has been growing in other states since legalization was achieved.

Legal situation for betting sites: Perfectly legal

While online sports betting is fairly new in West Virginia, it was made legal with Senate Bill 415 in 2018 and made available once PASPA was lifted. FanDuel have launched a sportsbook product in the state of West Virginia, with the legal status of online sports betting not appearing to be in any further danger. There are a number of other sportsbook operators that have been approved to operate in the state, as bettors in West Virginia are waiting on entities like PointsBet and DraftKings to officially launch in the state through various casinos for competition to commence between the big brands that have access to WV sports betting.

Market prediction for the future

While the online West Virginia casino age is only beginning, expect the sports betting market to continue to improve in terms of what it can offer players on a regular basis. There are so many sports betting operators that have been approved to operate in the state that it is incredible, and those operators eventually will start offering wagering to players throughout West Virginia. That will prompt competition between sportsbooks which will lead to better promotions and more betting markets being available to those who want to take advantage of them once and for all.

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Legal situation of poker rooms & online poker in West Virginia 2020

Land-based poker rooms: A decent selection

Is poker legal in West Virginia? As of right now, the answer to that question is yes, but only land-based poker is an option to this point. There are five operating poker rooms in the state of West Virginia, with players having options throughout the state to play in-person tournaments and ring games of their choosing. With online poker coming soon, it will be interesting to see how land-based poker rooms are impacted from a business standpoint. But for now, the ability to play poker rests solely with the physical casinos until the year 2021 at the least.

Legal situation for land-based poker rooms: Totally legal

When it comes to the legal situation of land-based poker rooms in the state of West Virginia, there is nothing to challenge the legality of these physical poker locations. Where the legal situations for these operators will get interesting will be with the impending rollout of online poker to players in the state in the near future. Finding out which casinos will be working with online poker brands to bring players their poker action will be interesting, even if the continued operation of the land-based poker locations is already settled law that is not being challenged.

Online poker: Coming soon

Playing online poker can be fun, and people in the state of West Virginia are finally poised to experience that first-hand thanks to the continued legalization of wagering in the state. At this point, there is no online poker being played in West Virginia, as the gaming type was only recently legalized. However, online poker is coming soon, which means that players will not have to go elsewhere if they want to be able to play the game that they love on the internet. And with land-based poker already being an option, this state is becoming something of a favorable location for poker players as a whole.

Legal situation for online poker: Ready to start soon

Online poker was legalized in the state in 2019 with the passing of House Bill 2934 that resulted in the legalization of online casino and lottery play as well as poker action. As of now, there are no poker operators providing online poker to anyone in the state due to legalization being so new. According to reports, it looks like 2021 will be the time that online poker is finally launched by an operator to be consumed in the state. That will make for an intriguing situation as it will coincide with the anticipated release of online casino play in the state as well.

Market prediction for the future

Keeping an eye out for the future of poker in West Virginia is an interesting exercise given all of the changes already taking place in that portion of the betting industry in the state. West Virginia casino locations will continue to operate throughout the state, and will also give players the opportunity to play online in the coming years. As poker legalization online becomes more widely adjusted to, players will have the ability to choose between several providers, which should provide a decent player pool despite the fact that the state is small geographically.

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Legal situation of lotteries and online lottery in West Virginia 2020

Lottery action in West Virginia is legal both online and offline. The online lottery portion of anything in this state was legalized in March of 2019 as a part of House Bill 2934. The West Virginia Lottery Commission has headed up the offline portion of the lottery action in the state to this point. But it is the online lottery that has fallen behind to this point. The state, despite it being legal, has no online lottery operators of any kind be it for scratch cards or other forms of lottery action. This is a disappointment to many lottery enthusiasts who have seen so many interesting implementations of online lottery services around the United States and in other countries, who will have to wait to see any further excitement in the lotto sector in the state of West Virginia.

Legal situation of daily fantasy sports in West Virginia 2020

Daily fantasy sports have been legal in West Virginia since March of 2019 when House Bill 2934 was passed to enable the action to take place throughout the state. Daily fantasy sports operators both big and small have become a part of the equation in West Virginia, with DraftKings and FanDuel leading the way and Yahoo being another key player in the industry in the state. Other smaller operators such as FastPick or Sports Hub are also a part of the scene in West Virginia, which boasts one of the best daily fantasy sports menus from a player choice perspective around. As sports betting continues to be legalized around the state, expect the ability of players to pick between fantasy sports betting sites to improve, although there may just not be too many more options in the country for DFS players to choose from.

West Virginia Gambling

Legal situation of social casino in West Virginia 2020

Social casino gaming has gained in popularity over the years, as players have found a way to get all of the casino action that they want without having to risk any cash thanks to the use of social media. Sites that allow users to sign in using their social media accounts can play casino games such as slots or poker for free and share their success with friends and earn virtual coins and prizes based on the outcomes of what they do in those titles. In the case of these social games, there is no law against them in the state of West Virginia. Of course, with the advent of online casino play for real money set to come to the state in the next couple of years, players will have a real money alternative to these types of games. The question is how will that impact these kinds of social games.

Conclusion: Ahead of the game

It’s not exactly a guarantee in life that West Virginia will be ahead of the game on things, but their stances on wagering have been downright progressive compared to many of the states that make up the United States of America. This state has legalized the big three forms of wagering for both online and land-based action already. And while bettors will have to wait until the introduction of online casino and poker takes place, the fact that they already know that it’s coming should hold them over long enough to get them by. And with sports betting already enjoying both land-based and online action in the state, there are plenty of betting options to keep bettors in this state satisfied until its legalization efforts pay off once and for all. For now, the home of the Mountaineers will have to settle for being near the top of the mountain in the wagering world.

Gambling typeLegal status
Land-based casinosLegal
Online gamblingLegal in sports, casino and poker
Sports bettingLegal online and in person
LotteryLegal online and offline, no online providers
Daily fantasy sportsLegal
Minimum gambling age18 for lotto, bingo, racing and 21 elsewhere