Massachusetts Sports Betting
Massachusetts sports betting is closer than ever to becoming a reality and the state is inching closer to joining New England neighbors like New Hampshire and Rhode Island in approving sports wagers.
The Massachusetts state legislature is considering roughly a dozen bills that would legalize sports betting in the state. The proposals come after the Supreme Court overturned a decades-long ban on sports betting outside of Nevada, paving the way for states like New Hampshire, Rhode Island, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania to allow legal sports wagers in person and online. Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and both parties are on board with full-scale sports betting legalization too, all that’s left is to iron out the details.
Once approved, the law will allow any adult over 21 years old who is located inside the state to place sports wagers in person, online, and on their mobile device. The betting platforms are expected to be operated by existing casinos and daily fantasy sports operators. The law is expected to raise millions of dollars in tax revenue from licensing fees and a 12.5% tax on sports wagers and daily fantasy sports.
Here’s what we know about the legislation on online sports betting Massachusetts lawmakers are considering:
Online Sports Betting Massachusetts
Though the state legislature is considering about a dozen bills, the fate of sports betting in Massachusetts is all but certain now that lawmakers, the governor, casino operators, and other parties are on the same page.
Massachusetts, which was one of the first states to legalize daily fantasy sports, is slow-rolling the legislation, much like they did with daily fantasy sports, but the key potions of the law are already taking shape. Once legalized, the state’s existing physical casinos — MGM Springfield, Plainridge Park Casino and Encore Boston Harbor — will be able to apply for licenses to offer sports betting in person and online. The state is also expected to allow established daily fantasy sports operators, like Boston-based DraftKings, to apply for standalone mobile betting licenses.
As things currently stand, any adult over 21 who is located in Massachusetts will be able to place a wager on any professional sport. College sports and other amateur sports like the Olympics are likely to be excluded from the bill. Other states, like New Jersey, allow college sports betting but prohibit bets on games involving local schools. High school sports will certainly be excluded from the law. Coaches, athletes, referees, and other sports employees would also be banned from placing sports wagers.
Massachusetts Sports Betting Sites
Once the law is finalized, the three existing casinos will be able to offer in-person sports betting at their physical locations and online. A select number of daily fantasy sports platforms, presumably DraftKings and FanDuel, would be allowed to apply for mobile betting licenses. There are no plans to allow other companies to launch, though the state has a license open for a fourth casino to open in the state, which would also be allowed to offer sports wagers.
Sports betting legalization is expected to raise millions for the state. The state is expected to charge steep licensing fees for operators that want to get in on the action and will also impose a 12.5 percent tax on sports wagers, as well as daily fantasy sports. Other states have been able to raise millions after legalization, with funds raised from gaming going to improve roads and infrastructure, health programs, and to provide additional funds for local communities.