Despite West Virginia being known mostly for its wilderness and wilderness tourism, you might be surprised to hear that the state has a fairly well-established casino industry. Unfortunately, in recent years the West Virginia gambling industry is suffering due to other states relaxing their gambling laws. Now, the sparsely populated state is being forced to entertain the idea of legalizing and regulating an intrastate online casino network because of all the lost revenue that is heading to places like PA and Ohio to gamble.
Online casinos do exist in the state of West Virginia and are completely legal to play at. What’s more, they number in the hundreds so there will be no shortage of places to play. Looking ahead to the future it will be interesting to see if West Virginia decides to combat falling gambling revenues by building even more brick and mortar sites or if they are going to take gambling online. Seeing as they are a somewhat conservative state, the idea of legalized gambling online is something that may not go over very well in West Virginia.
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Legal Status of Online Casinos & Gambling — West Virginia
At the present moment in time, there is nothing written in state law that makes it illegal for someone to get on their computer and play their favorite casino games for real money. What would be illegal, however, is if you were to be living in West Virginia and started an online casino located within state borders. At the present moment in time, all the online casinos that exist in the state are based offshore. When most Americans hear the term “offshore,” their first thought is of nightmare stories of people being taken advantage of by foreign companies. While it is true that there have been many instances of fraud by people and companies located in other countries, the fact is that most online casinos nowadays—and almost all of the ones available to people from West Virginia—are entirely reputable and trustworthy. While they are not licensed in the US, so long as you are playing at a site that is held in high regard by the general public, chances are you will never encounter any issues or problems.
This is great for being able to gamble freely, but people have their concerns when it comes to participating in the industry when it is not at all overseen by figures of authority. It would be nice for West Virginia to go ahead and compete with other states by setting up an intrastate casino network, but that much seems very far off into the future. Instead, players will now be left with the hundreds of foreign operators, though many of them have solid reputations and offer a top-notch player experience.
In addition to real money casino games being able to be played from your computer at home, you are also able to play games on your mobile devices as well. Whether you have a smartphone or tablet, Android or Apple, real money casino games are never very far away. What’s more, some casinos offer a downloadable app while others allow you to play casino games directly within your phone or tablet’s browser. To make a long story short, gambling with real money in West Virginia has truly never been easier or more accessible.
Legal Status of Brick and Mortar Casinos — West Virginia
When you cross over the border into West Virginia, you will quickly notice that the state has all the makings and familiar symptoms of a conservative Southern state. If you think like this you might not be too far off, but as it relates to gambling at brick and mortar casinos you might be surprised to find out that there are quite a few brick and mortar casinos in the state; 5 to be exact.
Of the 5 casinos that exist within West Virginia, 4 of them are located on the same site as a racetrack. Luckily, and unlike how it is in many other states, the types of gambling you will find at racetrack casinos resembles the type of gambling you will find in Atlantic City. In fact, there are not many games that are illegal to be played at the state’s casinos. What the state is facing, however, is a decline in the amount of money brought in by brick and mortar casinos. This is becoming a problem because almost all of West Virginia’s neighbors have brick and mortar gambling options, and attractive ones at that. In an attempt to lure people back to the Wild and Wonderful state, there are plans to build a mega-casino on the border with Virginia. It will be interesting to see how this plays out once it is constructed.
For now, West Virginians seem to be mostly content with the number and variety of gambling options available. Though the state does tend to align itself more with the conservative, southern states, they take a more hands-off approach to most elements of governance. What we mean by this is that, though you would expect brick and mortar gambling to be illegal, the West Virginian government listens to its constituents, who have made it plainly clear that they want gambling, and want it to be free of many unnecessary restrictions. It is this type of governing that may pave the way for more avenues by which citizens can gamble with real money—namely in the online realm.
West Virginia Online Casinos & Gambling FAQ
- Abbreviation: WV
- State Motto: Mountaineers are always free.
- Capital City: Charleston
- Population Estimate: 1.8 million (38th)
- Website: http://www.wv.gov/
Can I deposit money into a player account without having to worry?
Yes, so long as you are playing at a reputable online casino you should have no issues whatsoever when it comes to making a deposit. Furthermore, there is nothing illegal about playing at online casinos, so you should never fear for your legal safety.
What type of casino games can I play at West Virginia online casinos?
This is something that depends heavily upon the online casino at which you are playing at, but to be honest there is no shortage of online casino games offered to West Virginia residents. Whether you are a blackjack player, a roulette player, or prefer poker, you will surely find what you are looking for should you choose to play at online casinos within the state.
How safe are West Virginia online casinos?
So long as you do a bit of preliminary research, you will ensure that you are playing at a casino that has gained a solid reputation for itself over the years. Nowadays, there are very few shady online casinos out there, but there are definitely sites that are better than others. So long as you do some research, you will have no issues as it relates to the safety of your personal and financial information.