Online Gambling Idaho 2020 - A Guide to Gambling in Idaho
Idaho has some pertinent laws when it comes to all kinds of gambling. Indeed, playing at Idaho online casinos is assumed to banned by the state because the current law regarding the wagering of money on such practises is all-encompassing.
Idaho is a north-western state in the USA that is famous for its hot springs, potatoes and lentils – in fact, it’s often referred to as the Lentil Capital of the World. It’s also famously known as the Gem State, though the only native gem available there is the garnet!
One thing Idaho is definitely not famous for these days is gambling, with the state banning pretty much all forms of gambling bar a few. The state clearly expresses that the majority of casino games are banned, a stance that can be taken to extend to Idaho online casino, too.
Idaho has strict laws when it comes to land-based gambling – even tribal-owned casinos are banned from providing patrons with any casino games other than video poker and slots (though one has video blackjack).
The Legality Of Land-Based Casinos & Online Casinos In Idaho
Online gambling Idaho, including online casinos, are illegal, and only a few types of gambling are available to people who live in the Gem State. Below we take a more in-depth look at what is and what isn’t allowed. The northwestern state of Idaho may have had a golden age of gambling back in the 1800s, but things changed dramatically with the 1953 legislation that banned pretty much all types of gambling in the state.
Things have slowly started shifting since then, and Idahoans have a few more options nowadays:
Pari-mutuel betting on horse racing was approved in 1963.
The Idaho state lottery was introduced in 1989 and it has since become affiliated with many of the USA’s biggest lotteries, including the PowerBall and MegaMillions.
Bingo and raffles for charitable purposes were legislated for in 1993, along with duck racing.
Off-track pari-mutuel horse racing through simulcast got the go-ahead in 2011.
Bets on historical horse races became legal as of 2013.
Apart from this, in 1988, the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act gave Native American tribes the right to run casinos on tribal land. Idaho is home to seven of these: the Coeur D'Alene Casino, the Clearwater River Casino & Hotel, the It'se-Ye-Ye Casino, the Sage Hill Travel Center & Casino, the Kootenai River Inn Casino & Spa, the Bannock Peak Casino, and the Shoshone-Bannock Casino Hotel.
Nevertheless, these casinos are only allowed to operate slots and video poker, with other table games banned at all Indian land-based casinos in Idaho. This is due to the stance the State has taken, which is very strict.
The law, in fact, is very clear and all-encompassing and defines gambling as: “risking any money, credit, deposit or other thing of value for gain contingent in whole or in part upon lot, chance, the operation of a gambling device or the happening or outcome of an event, including a sporting event, the operation of casino gambling including, but not limited to, blackjack, craps, roulette, poker, bacarrat [baccarat] or keno” (Section 18-3801 of Idaho State Legislature).
As you can see, the law does not mention online gambling Idaho or online casinos specifically and, for that reason, you may find many sources and websites on the internet which suggest that playing online in Idaho is not strictly-speaking illegal. This is not correct, however, as ‘gambling device’ can be extended to mean a mobile phone, tablet or computer, while the list of games Idahoans can’t play is pretty clear.
This ban on online gambling is also not limited to games like slots, poker, roulette and other table games, but also to sports betting and Daily Fantasy Sport, which are also not regulated or expressly legal in Idaho. Therefore, we do not recommend that you play online while in the Gem State.
Land-Based Gambling In Idaho Today
Looking for a land-based casino in Idaho? Below we list the top five brick-and-mortar casinos in the Gem State – all of which are operated by Native American tribes on tribal land.
Coeur D'Alene Casino
A 60,000 square foot casino that has over 1,400 gaming machines, video blackjack, bingo and off-track betting.
Kootenai River Inn Casino & Spa
This casino has 445 gaming machines, three casino rooms (of which one is non-smoking), progressive jackpots and a casino cocktail service.
Clearwater River Casino & Hotel
Hundreds of game titles available, including Jaws, Diamond Factory, Mystical Temple, Fort Knox and many more!
Bannock Peak Casino
Over 60 gaming machines are available at this casino.
Sage Hill Travel Center & Casino
This casino features 100 new gaming machines, a café, a truckers’ lounge, showers, convenience store and a gas station.
Online Gambling Idaho Laws
Idaho has some very strict rules when it comes to gambling – laws which also extend to online gambling Idaho. Like the law of so many other states in the US, that of Idaho does not specifically mention online gambling Idaho or make reference to laptops, mobile phones or tablets. This gives many people the idea that online gambling Idaho, particularly at offshore casinos, is not illegal.
The truth of the matter is that the current law, though written a number of decades ago, uses terminology that could include any device used for gambling and any form of gambling. So strict is the definition, in fact, that when the state took the Coeur D’Alene tribe to court over poker tournaments, the judge ruled in favor of the state as the law left no room for any chance vs skill inquiry.
In other words, we do not recommend that you play any type of casino game online while living or visiting the Gem State.
What should I know about Online Gambling Idaho?
While the gambling law in Idaho was written a number of decades ago and doesn’t expressly mention online gambling, it does ban citizens from playing the majority of casino games in most circumstances – including online.
The state has strict laws governing brick-and-mortar casinos, too. Even casinos based on tribal lands cannot offer any table games to their players.
Those looking to gamble in the Gem State can do so through one of the following ways: pari-mutuel wagering on horse races (including via simulcast), the State Lottery, charitable gambling, or play video poker or slots (only) at one of the seven tribal casinos in Idaho.
Sports betting and daily fantasy sport are also not legal in Idaho.
Gambling Laws Governing Offshore Casinos & What It Means For Idaho Players
Because Idaho law is uncompromising in its stance on gambling, some players may decide to play online at offshore casinos. Indeed, you may even come across websites that suggest this as a way of bypassing the law and playing your favorite casino games without getting into trouble.
Nevertheless, this is definitely not recommended.
For a start, the law in Idaho is very clear on the definition of gambling and gambling devices. It also prohibits all citizens and visitors from playing the majority of casino games, including roulette, blackjack and baccarat, even at the majority of brick-and-mortar casinos located on tribal lands.
Secondly, these offshore casinos are, as the name suggests, registered in offshore jurisdictions, meaning that they do not have to abide by the laws of the state or, indeed, of your country of residence. This may lead to many complications should any problems arise, and the state would definitely not be able to protect you, your rights, your money or your data in that eventuality.
Therefore, playing at offshore-registered casinos should definitely not be on the cards for anyone living or visiting the Gem State.
Online Casino Games For Idaho
Idaho only allows a small number of gambling methods to take place within the state, mainly pari-mutuel wagering on horse races (as well as by simulcast), charitable gambling and the state lottery. The state also has seven brick-and-mortar casinos located on tribal lands, but even these are not allowed to offer the vast majority of table games, with just slots and video poker available.
Online gambling in the state is completely prohibited, meaning that those living in the Gem State will not really find any casino games available to play in Idaho. This includes daily fantasy sport and sports betting which, at the time of writing, are still not regulated by the state of Idaho. However, you can still enjoy free casino games at social casinos.
Section 18-3801 of the Idaho State Legislature defines gambling as mentioned above. As the first part of that law makes clear, Idahoans are not allowed to play any casino games for real money, which means that there are no payment options available, either.
Nevertheless, if you are out of the state of Idaho and in a jurisdiction that allows for online casinos to operate legally, then we suggest checking the Terms and Conditions of your online casino website of choice to check what kind of payment options are available and what currencies are accepted.
Online Gambling Idaho FAQs
Is online gambling legal in Idaho?
No, online gambling in the Gem State is illegal. This, however, doesn’t stop some sites from suggesting that since the law doesn’t specifically mention online gambling, Idahoans can play at online at casinos registered in other jurisdictions. This is definitely not recommended as on top of being against the law, it also means that you will not get the protection you need should things not go as expected.
If you are in Idaho and would like to gamble, the state has legalized a number of gambling methods. These are namely pari-mutuel wagering on horse races (including via simulcast), the State Lottery, and bingo and raffles for charitable gambling. There are also seven tribal-run casinos that offer video poker and slots, though no table games.
Can I play at an online casino in Idaho via mobile or tablet?
Online gambling at Idaho online casino is not allowed by the law of the state, which means that Idahoans will not find any legal online casinos where to play their favorite casino games. Moreover, the law can be expanded to include mobile phones or tablets as ‘gambling devices’, so even playing at offshore registered casinos could be deemed to be illegal.
What casino games can I play at Idaho online casinos?
There are no casino games available at Idaho online casinos. Indeed, there are very few casino games available at the seven brick-and-mortar casinos located on tribal land, which can only offer players video poker and slots.
Is it possible to play online casino games with dollars?
Since Idaho does not regulate online casinos within the state, it is illegal to play at Idaho online casino. Because of this, players are not allowed to play any money in any currency at Idaho online casino. If, however, you are out of the state of Idaho and in a jurisdiction where it is legal to play at online casinos, then we suggest checking the Terms and Conditions of the online casino website of your choice to check what currencies and payment methods are accepted before you sign up and make your first deposit.
Are the Idaho online casinos on this site regulated?
All online casinos mentioned on this site are legal, regulated and have all the measures in place to keep you, your money and your data safe. They have also taken all the necessary steps to ensure that your rights are safeguarded throughout the process. Nevertheless, since playing at Idaho online casinos is not legal, we do not list any on this page.
Am I eligible to receive an online casino bonus at an Idaho Casino?
Unfortunately not, as the state of Idaho bans citizens and visitors from playing at Idaho online casinos and at casinos registered in offshore jurisdictions. Of course, if you are not in the state and in a place where online casinos can operate legally, then do check the Terms and Conditions of your online casino’s website to see how any bonuses can be received and redeemed.
How do I start playing for real money at an Idaho online casino?
Online casinos in Idaho are not regulated and it is illegal to play the majority of casino games in the state – including at brick-and-mortar casinos based on tribal lands. This ban extends to poker, baccarat, blackjack, keno, craps and roulette to name just a few. Of course, this means that you cannot play for real money at online casinos while in Idaho.
Which online casino payment options are popular in Idaho?
We have no data for this as playing at Idaho online casinos or even at online casinos registered in offshore jurisdictions is not allowed in the Gem State at the time of writing.
Do I need to pay taxes on my gambling winnings in Idaho?
Idaho considers earnings from gambling as taxable income, which therefore means that you have to declare any winnings to the state. This is also the case for non-residents, who need to file the nonresident state return form (Form W-2G) if they win any money off gambling while in the Gem State.
Playing For Real Money Casino Idaho Online Is Not Allowed
We hope this has answered any questions you may have had about the gambling laws in Idaho and what this means for players looking to gamble at both brick-and-mortar and online casinos in the Gem State.
As always, we urge you to remain well within the law of the jurisdiction you live or have found yourself in and, when playing, never to wager more than you can afford to lose.