Here is our Maryland Betting guide, including information on why choosing offshore sportsbooks like YouWager.lv is the right choice.
Despite a long history of gambling through the lottery and horse racing, Maryland was a latecomer to casino gaming. However, by approving a bill allowing slot machines in 2008, Maryland paved the stage for the construction of casinos throughout the state.
The state’s growth in casino gaming is encouraging, but from an online standpoint, Maryland is not a terrific place to reside for sports bettors. Maryland’s regulations, while rarely implemented, call for hefty fines for anyone who lays any form of bet outside of a casino in the state.
Maryland Gaming Regulations
On November 4, 2008, the Maryland Slot Machines Amendment was on the ballot in Maryland. The bill gives the state the authority to award up to five video lottery licenses and put up to 15,000 slot machines in five different places across the state. With the passage of this legislation, Maryland became the 38th state to authorize live casino gaming or slot machines.
Maryland’s gaming powers were increased even more in 2012. In addition to the five already licensed casinos, one more was approved for construction, and table games were allowed to be included into these enterprises. Previously only serving as slot parlors, these casinos can now function more like conventional casinos, including table games and poker rooms.
Gambling outside of these legal casinos is absolutely illegal, hence the legalization and growth of these casinos was a welcome amendment to the Maryland Code. In Maryland, “a person may not bet, wager, or gamble” according to Penal Code 12-102. Bettors who are arrested and convicted of a misdemeanor face 6-12 months in prison and a fine of $200 to $1000.
Maryland Sports Betting
Sports betting is prohibited in Maryland. While most states have far stronger penalties for bookmaking than for betting, Maryland’s statutory laws make no mention of bookmaking. Instead, everyone who participates in gambling, whether betting or receiving a bet, is committing a misdemeanor under the law.
Offshore sportsbooks are not subject to Maryland state legislation because they are not located in the state or country. As a result, despite the fact that internet gambling is prohibited in Maryland, many of them continue to provide it to residents of the state.
There are no particular references to online gambling in the Maryland Code, but it would be difficult to argue that it is prohibited when the state considers all types of “betting, wagering, and gambling” to be illegal and punished by misdemeanor.
While this is not a strictly regulated statute, Maryland individuals must understand the dangers associated with placing bets in the state and decide whether or not they wish to face those risks. With no other options for sports betting, online betting is the only realistic choice for Maryland sports bettors.
Maryland Poker and Casino
The Hollywood Casino in Perryville opened its doors to the public in 2010, making it Maryland’s first casino. Ocean Downs opened in Berlin in 2011, Rocky Gap Casino Resort and Maryland Live! Casino in 2013, and Horseshoe Casino Baltimore in 2014. The MGM National Harbor will open in Prince George’s County in 2016.
The Horseshoe Baltimore offers a World Series of Poker-themed poker room, but the Maryland Live! Poker Room, with over 50 tables, is by far the largest in the state. Both sites have cash games as well as tournaments.
As with online sports betting, many online poker rooms will accept business from Maryland residents because they are not governed by the state of Maryland. Online poker is unlawful in Maryland under the definition of any bet or wager, even if poker is not specifically specified.
Poker players in Maryland must consider the benefits and drawbacks of playing illegally online vs playing live in the state’s legal casinos. Live games are more limited, but players are not at risk of being caught.
Other Maryland Gaming Options
Maryland has two harness race tracks, Ocean Downs and Rosecraft Raceway, as well as three regular race tracks, Laurel Park Racecourse, Maryland State Fairgrounds (when the fair is in town), and Pimlico Race Course. The Preakness Stakes, the second leg of the Triple Crown, is held each year at Baltimore’s Pimlico Race Course.
Maryland State Lottery
The Maryland Lottery was founded in 1973 and is the state’s fourth largest contributor to the economy. In-state draws, multi-state drawings (including Powerball and Mega Millions), and scratch ticket games are available in the state.
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