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Is Online Blackjack Legal in the US? All the Legalities Explained

Back in the day, the only place where you could legally bet on blackjack was at a brick-and-mortar casino. That is still mostly true since many commercial and tribal US casinos exist. However, people have been transferring to online casinos over the last decade. The best part of this is that they can play blackjack for real money from anywhere.

Offshore Blackjack Sites That Accept US Players

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Wild Casino

Accepts US players
Bonus Offer: $5,000 Welcome Bonus
More Info
Available Games
  • Slots
  • Blackjack
  • Roulette
  • Live Dealer
  • Baccarat
Payment Methods
Features
  • Great selection of slots
  • High-quality live dealer games
  • Excellent welcome bonus
  • Crypto-friendly

Cafe Casino

Accepts US players
Bonus Offer: 350% up to $2500
More Info
Available Games
  • Slots
  • Blackjack
  • Roulette
  • Live Dealer
  • Baccarat
Payment Methods
Features
  • Accepts cryptocurrencies
  • Generous welcome bonus
  • Loyalty program
  • Kahnawake Licence

BetUS Casino

Accepts US players
Bonus Offer: 150% up to $3,000
More Info
Available Games
  • Slots
  • Blackjack
  • Roulette
  • Live Dealer
  • Baccarat
Payment Methods
Features
  • Reputable online casino with 26+ years’ experience
  • Wide range of deposit bonuses for sports bettors and casino players
  • Outstanding customer support
  • Several different cryptocurrencies accepted for deposits and withdrawals
35 casinos found based on your search.
Image of Is Online Blackjack Legal in the US

Although you need to be at least 18 and have a smartphone or a PC by your side, in some US states, you can play online blackjack with peace of mind, while in others, its status is still unregulated. 

Stay with us and learn what your options are when it comes to playing blackjack online legally and safely in the US.

Licensed vs. Offshore Casinos

Brick-and-mortar casinos dominated the United States’ gambling scene long before online casinos were conceived. Land-based gambling sites date back to the very first days of the United States. And the gambling experience they provide is utterly different. 

You can’t beat the authentic atmosphere of playing blackjack in a land-based casino. Las Vegas and Atlantic City are among the most popular destinations, though riverboat, tribal and commercial casinos, and casino boat cruises are right behind them. 

Each offers multiple blackjack tables with different table limits that cater to players of all budgets. The common variants you can enjoy playing include:

It’s also worth noting that you must be at least 21 to play blackjack for real money at a land-based casino.  Plus, each establishment holds a special license from a governing body employed by every state.  

Image of Blackjack Dealer Flipping Cards

Contrary to that, offshore casinos operate from foreign jurisdictions and are not overseen by US regulatory bodies. Washington and Connecticut are the only states that prohibit residents from playing online casino games or betting on sports through offshore gaming platforms. The other 48 states in the US have no state laws explicitly prohibiting or allowing offshore casinos.

Nevertheless, many of these online gambling platforms are licensed from international gaming jurisdictions and follow specific rules and guidelines to secure a safe gambling environment. Thus, players can enjoy playing their favorite games in licensed offshore casinos located outside the US since no federal law prevents them from doing so.

Another important thing is the existence of the UIGEA, which is an act that prohibits payment processors from accepting illegal payments made to offshore gambling sites. Although it mainly targets offshore gambling sites and payment processors, players should be aware of it. 

As for state-licensed online gambling platforms, only five states regulated their status:

Advantages and Disadvantages of Offshore Casinos

Image of Pros and Cons of Offshore CasinosRegistering and playing in offshore casinos has its pros and cons. One of the biggest advantages is a much more expansive game selection. You’ll likely find multiple new blackjack variations and some unavailable in land-based casinos. They also offer demo modes, which are convenient for new players.

Another perk refers to the enticing bonuses these platforms offer to attract new and retain old players. Plus, you can play your favorite games on any device, anywhere, and anytime.

Finally, your winnings are not taxable. Because the casino you played in is not located in your country, you are not required to report the profits to the IRS.

But, despite offshore casinos adhering to local regulations and complying with the law to provide their services worldwide, some problems may still arise.

Some don’t hold valid licenses or have licenses from not-so-respected regulatory bodies. This is the first thing to check before joining a casino. Another disadvantage is that if a casino refuses to pay out your winnings for any reason, you won’t be able to turn to local authorities for help. To prevent this, always read the Terms and Conditions page of the casino before playing.

Naturally, players worry about their safety when playing online. Usually, these casinos create a safe gaming environment using reliable software and modern technology. However, the games that some casinos offer aren’t fair because they don’t have the proper licenses or haven’t been verified by independent software testing agencies.

Regulated Blackjack Software Providers in the US

Image of Legal Blackjack Providers

Vendors have a rough time obtaining licenses to offer US players blackjack and other online casino games. Even the biggest industry names must undergo extensive background investigations and satisfy the regulatory bodies’ criteria. 

NetEnt and Evolution were among the first to be granted gaming licenses by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board. These industry titans have been offering their blackjack games to Pennsylvanians since 2019. Evolution was also the first provider to gain New Jersey Preliminary Waiver Status.

Other Pennsylvania-licensed vendors include:

  • Boyd Gaming
  • Conscious Gaming
  • Sugarhouse HSP Gaming

Earlier this year, Bragg Gaming got the approval for a license by the PGCB, and Inspired Entertainment followed right behind. 

In December 2020, the Michigan Control Gaming Board awarded provisional licenses to 15 online gaming providers. The ones offering casino games include NYX Digital Gaming and Churchill Downs Interactive Gaming. AGS, Soaring Eagle Gaming, and Spin Games were quickly added to the mix. 

West Virginia’s Lottery iGaming Interim Supplier license is not easy to get. Thus, only a few vendors received it, including Wazdan, High 5 Games, Pariplay, and EveryMatrix. 

As for Connecticut, the Department of Consumer Protection (DCP) Gaming Division awarded an online gaming service provider license to:

  • Gaming Realms
  • Spin Games
  • High 5 Games
  • Bragg Gaming

Conclusion

In general, online gambling is not illegal in the United States. Federal laws do not prohibit online gambling as long as it does not cross state lines or involve an online gambling platform located within the country.

If you are wondering what types of gambling are legal or illegal in your state, check your local and state laws first. Until all states legalize online casinos, US players can visit their offshore counterparts with peace of mind or travel to the five US states where online casinos are legal. 

FAQ

Are online blackjack games fair? Blackjack always has a slight house edge (about 0.5%), and the online version is the same. The house edge remains within this reasonable range due to industry audits, allowing players to rest assured that they are receiving the best possible experience.
Has anyone ever been prosecuted for playing blackjack in an offshore online casino? The latest incident recorded in this department was when a player was fined $500 and charged with a misdemeanor in 2003.
Is it safe to play blackjack in offshore casinos? Certainly, but it's your responsibility to do your homework before making wagers online. We recommend playing in reputable online casinos; however, we urge you to read any online casino's terms and conditions before playing.
Which offshore casinos are the safest? The most trustworthy casinos are those licensed by the United Kingdom Gambling Commission or Malta Gambling Authority. Aside from these reputable authorities, there are others, such as the Alderney Gambling Control Commission and the Curacao eGaming Commission.

About the Author

Author Hi all! My name is Jayson Peter, and I am the Chief Editor here at Casino USA. I have always been a huge fan of casinos, but I noticed that there are not a lot of websites out there that discuss the gambling industry in enough detail, so that’s how the idea for CasinoUSA.com was born. With my extensive knowledge of the industry and the help of my team, I am ready to give you an insight into the exciting world of casino gambling in the United States.