DFS Online Betting A Complex US Legal Issue

Published Sunday, January 24, 2016 - Online-Casinos.com
DFS Online Betting A Complex US Legal Issue

The state governments of many jurisdictions in the USA have been debating the legality of Daily Fantasy Sports since the activity became popular. The various daily fantasy sports firms have taken different approaches to the U.S. states that sites allow to play DFS for real money. The latest news regarding the legal status has come out of Illinois, as Attorney General Lisa Madigan declared DFS illegal gambling under state law. DraftKings and FanDuel two of the biggest DFS operators immediately sued the Attorney General to have the courts find her opinion in error. Madigan responded by filing motions to dismiss lawsuits filed by the companies.

Madigan maintains that the operators’ complaints are “barred by sovereign immunity” because issuing legal opinions is well within her constitutional and statutory powers and, more importantly, issuing her opinion “did not violate any law.” Madigan also claims the operators did not provide facts explaining that the businesses experienced the “concrete hardship necessary to convert their disagreement with the Opinion into a ripe justifiable controversy.”

There are currently many groups opposed and for Daily Fantasy Sports betting in their particular jurisdiction. Some state legislatures are swamped with questions from interested parties who want to see the inclusion of the activity in their area and others in opposition with legal reasoning backing them up. The issue has become a political hot potato for administrators, legislators and lawyers in places such as California where Tribal interests are presenting a challenge. In states such as Georgia the state lottery may turn out to be the main opponent of DFS in that state, while state Attorney General Sam Olens has confirmed he was investigating DFS. 

Massachusetts is the state where DraftKings is headquartered and it was confirmed that attorney general Maura Healey has laid out regulations that will govern the DFS industry from a consumer protection standpoint.

The legal complexity of Daily Fantasy Sports betting in America is enormous and will unfold slowly over the next few months.

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