Ohio Online Gambling Legalities
Up until only a few years ago, the online and offline casino landscapes of Ohio were best described as being bleak. With the passing of a few laws only a couple of years ago, there seems to be a renaissance of sorts happening with Ohio gambling. Though it is still in its infancy, the casino industry in the state of Ohio is already doing well and growing each year. Not only is the number of brick and mortar casinos growing with each passing year, but it seems as though the number of online casinos is too.
Like many other states across the country, Ohio’s move to become more accepting of gambling came as a result of other states doing the same. Rather than sit back and watch millions of dollars pour into neighboring states’ casino networks each year, Ohio was proactive and decided to attempt to create a gambling industry of its own. Though only a few years old, early reports are that the casino industry in the state is as healthy as they come and is in prime position to grow much larger than it already is.
Legal Status of Online Casinos & Gambling — Ohio
Long before you could head to Cleveland and play your favorite casino games at a brick and mortar establishment, you were able to take advantage of any number of online casinos offering their services to residents of the state. Today, even with the existence of a legal brick and mortar casino network, online casinos in Ohio are thriving and growing in number with each passing month. There is almost no barrier to entry, either, so as soon as an online casino decides that it would like to be made available for people from Ohio, it can go live at any point in time. This means that the online casino industry in the state of Ohio is and has been growing at a rapid pace for some time now. Until state law becomes either more restrictive or more accommodating, the existence of online casinos in Ohio will not change too much at all.
Unfortunately, at the present moment in time there are no laws on the books that make it illegal for Ohioans to play at online casinos. The only thing that would be illegal is for someone to operate an online casino within the state’s borders. Because that is illegal, you will find that most online casinos offering their services to Ohio residents are based offshore and in other countries. While the brick and mortar casinos are based in the state, those that exist online are not. Because of the way the US legal system is set up, the only online casinos able to offer their services to residents of Ohio are those based in other countries. Places like Curacao and Costa Rica host many of these sites. While this may seem unusual and, in many ways, shady, the fact of the matter is that almost all of these casinos are as legitimate as can be. So long as this remains true and you do not operate an online casino within Ohio’s borders, there is no legal ramifications you could face for having played casino games online within the state.
Legal Status of Brick and Mortar Casinos — Ohio
Like many of the United States’ Southern states, Ohio has historically been known for being more conservative than most. As such, it follows that Ohio did not legalize the existence of brick and mortar casinos until only a few years ago. Now, the state has 4 casinos and is actively looking to license, construct, and run a few more. Being such a large state, Ohio has taken a logical stance and has been setting up casinos in different regions. Unlike other states, which will feature a few casinos in a major city and none elsewhere, Ohio is making an effort to get everyone in on the action. Unfortunately, however, there are always going to be some people left in the dark, unable to gamble at brick and mortar casinos. For these people, online is the way to go.
As is often the case, Ohio was forced to legalized brick and mortar casinos due to the fact that so much potential tax revenue was flowing over the borders into states like Pennsylvania, where brick and mortar casinos have existed for closer to a decade. Not looking to simply lose out on millions of dollars of revenue each year, the state of Ohio acted quickly to establish its growing brick and mortar casino network. Unfortunately, Ohio is such a large state that brick and mortar casinos may be hours and hours away. This is why online casinos have become such a hit with Ohioans. Adding to the convenience of online casinos is the fact that many of these same sites are able to offer a mobile version as well. This means that your favorite casino games are always available so long as your smartphone or tablet has access to the internet. Like the casinos themselves, mobile apps are not created equally. Still, they all allow for gambling on the go, and this is what players love.
Ohio Online Casinos & Gambling FAQ
How many different deposit options am I going to be offered?
The number and type of deposit options you will be offered depends on the site at which you are playing. A general rule of thumb, however, is that you can fund a player account by way of a debit/credit card transaction or by way of a direct bank transfer. Both methods of deposit allow you to begin playing immediately, so which option you choose is really up to you.
What kind of live casino games can I play online?
Live casino games are games that exist at online casinos, but operate like games that exist at brick and mortar casinos. Rather than having an invisible, software-run dealer deal your cards, take bets, and announce winners, live online casino games see you play online in the presence of a real, live dealer who will be dealing real cards, shuffling real decks, and able to answer any questions you might have. Most often live casino games come in the form of blackjack, but the number of live games offered is expanding rapidly.
Are Ohio online casinos safe to play at?
When you hear that most Ohio online casinos are based offshore, you may immediately become skeptical as to the trustworthiness of the site in question. This is a natural reaction, but the fact of the matter is that most Ohio online casinos are run by reputable companies who will do their best to ensure that you have a pleasant experience at their site. Even though these casinos are not regulated by the state, they are generally trustworthy and reputable.