Online gambling is a type of betting on casinos, sports, and other entertainment activities over the Internet. This form of gaming is legal in many countries, including Australia, Canada, the Caribbean, and most of the European Union. In addition to gambling on casino games, a growing number of sites are offering online sports betting. Unlike the traditional method of placing bets, online bets can be placed by anyone with a computer and a credit card.
However, some state officials have voiced their concerns that online gambling may be used to lure illegal gambling establishments into their jurisdictions. As a result, Congress has explored ways to regulate and tax these businesses. One proposed bill, the Internet Gambling Regulation and Tax Enforcement Act, would regulate the industry, impose taxes on those who provide internet gambling services, and levy fines on those who engage in such activities.
The Internet Gambling Regulation and Tax Enforcement Act is modeled after legislation in other nations. For example, the United Kingdom’s Gambling Commission has established licensing and regulatory authority for the industry. It includes a series of conditions that must be met by Internet gambling businesses to receive the license. These conditions include age verification, location verification, appropriate data security standards, and other regulations.
The Internet Gambling Regulation and Tax Act also contains a definition of unlawful Internet gambling. It defines gambling as a game of chance that requires the player to bet against other players. Other forms of gambling on the Internet include sports betting and virtual poker. While the law is not comprehensive, it does cover most forms of internet gambling.
Another law is the Travel Act, which applies to those who use an interstate facility to participate in an activity that is unlawful in another state. The Wire Act is a federal law that is enforced against wagering and wagering businesses. Operators of such businesses can be incarcerated and fined. There are also statutory exceptions to the Wire Act. If the act is legal in the source and destination locations, the Act’s jurisdiction does not apply.
A third piece of federal legislation that affects the law of internet gambling is the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. Although not specifically addressing Internet gambling, the IGA prohibits gambling on reservations in Indian States.
The Department of Justice has argued that all forms of Internet gambling are illegal. Consequently, federal prosecutors warned PayPal that it could face prosecution. PayPal responded by suspending financial transactions related to illegal Internet bets.
Several other bills have been introduced in the House to soften the federal law. Among these are the UIGEA and the Skill Game Protection Act. They are designed to clarify the Wire Act to exempt certain games, and they contain factors that can help weed out low-level gambling cases.
Some states have also resisted enforcing their Internet gambling laws. Their concerns arise from the notion that the state’s power under the Commerce Clause may not be sufficient to preempt federal action.