The Legality of Online Gambling

Overview about the Legal Ramifications of Online Gambling

While online gambling has become immensely popular across the globe, there are questions regarding its legality in many countries. Opinions vary on one of the critical issues related to online gambling – the legal aspect of the industry. That there are a lot of negative shades attached to gambling itself has also not helped the cause of online gambling. The negative shades include moral degradation, addiction, and criminality.

This is what has caused law enforcement agencies in the United States to take a strong stand against online gambling from a legal standpoint. There is legislation being put in place to tackle online gambling head-on, and many of the online gambling websites in fact have disclaimers stating they did not encourage participation from the US.

Click here to visit The Best Online Casino

As of now, there are two laws in the pipeline to combat online gambling in the US. One of the laws is designed to ban the industry altogether, while the other one is designed to act as a regulator for an industry that is valued at $4 billion and has its tentacles across the entire world.

Online Gambling and the Government at Loggerheads

If the US government does indeed ban online gambling or enforce restrictions on it, this would not be the first time such confrontation has happened. Earlier too, there have been numerous confrontations between the industry and the government, with the government trying to put curbs in place to restrict the growth of this industry.

So what draws the ire of the anti-gambling lobby when one mentions the words ‘gambling industry’? Basically, the anti-gambling lobby views this industry as an entity that is neither taxed nor subject to regulatory guidelines and principles. Added to this, the lobby for the brick and mortar casinos has also thrown in their lot with the anti-gambling lobby. Call it shortsightedness if you will, but that is the fact.

While the government is planning to introduce prohibitory legislation targeting the online gambling industry, surveys among the American public seem to throw up a different opinion. According to one such survey, 55 out of every 100 people, i.e. more than 50% of the people surveyed, said prohibition was not the answer.

Laws Against Online Gambling

Currently, there are two laws being proposed to deal with the ‘menace’ of online gambling. The first law, called the Unlawful Internet Gambling Funding Prohibition Act (HR21) is basically prohibitory legislation aimed at banning online gambling in the US.

The Republican Senator from Iowa, Sen. Jim Leach, proposed this bit of legislation. According to the senator, online gambling can lead to addiction and also trigger organized crime, besides resulting in an upsurge in consumer debt. If Sen. Leach’s proposed legislation becomes law, credit card companies would bear the brunt for allowing clients to use the card to fund online bets.

The second bit of legislation to counter the threat of online gambling is the Internet Gambling Licensing and Regulation Commission Act (HR 1223). Proposed in March this year, this Act would enable the creation of a federal commission to set up guidelines and standards for the industry. Entertainment companies would ensure only adults play online gambling games by using technological assistance.