What types of gambling are legal in Connecticut?
Connecticut regulates many forms of gambling, both online and in-person. Legal online gambling options include casinos, poker sites, and mobile sportsbook apps. In-person gambling options include the state lottery, parimutuel horse racing wagering, casinos, and charitable gaming.
This list shows the types of gambling found in Connecticut and where to find it:
- Online casinos
- Online poker sites
- Sports betting (online sports betting apps and retail sportsbooks)
- Horse and greyhound racing (off-track and mobile)
- Lottery (scratch-offs, keno and lotto sales at retailers)
- Slots, video poker and table games (at the state’s tribal casinos)
- Bingo and raffles (only at registered charities)
- Daily fantasy sports (online only)
Online Gambling in Connecticut
Online gambling is legal in Connecticut with the passing of House Bill 6451 and its subsequent signing into law by Gov. Ned Lamont on May 27, 2021.
Under the law, the state’s two tribes and only casino operators (Mashantucket Pequot – Foxwoods; Mohegan – Mohegan Sun) are granted full rights to all online casino operations within the state. Both retail and online sports betting is also within the tribes’ rights, which it shares with the Connecticut Lottery.
Horse and greyhound racing bets are also permitted online and via mobile apps. TVG, TwinSpires and BetAmerica all accept players from the state.
Daily fantasy sports contests are exempted from the state’s gambling law. These events may be bet online in the same way as racing. All major daily fantasy sports companies accept players from Connecticut. This includes DraftKings, FanDuel, Fantasy Draft and Yahoo.
Deposits, Withdrawals, and Bonuses from Online Casinos in Connecticut
Many standard deposit options are available for online casinos, all of which are guaranteed to be safe and secure due to the fact that you are transacting with a legal, regulated site. Those methods include:
- Bank Transfers
- Credit and Debit Cards
- E-Wallets such as PayPal and Skrill
- E-Checks and ACH Payments
- Prepaid cards
- PayNearMe for cash deposits
E-wallets and credit cards are the most popular options among players, though some players may run into deposit options with their banks. There also may be associated fees with various options, so be sure to do your individual research.
Regarding bonuses, online casinos offer first-time deposit bonuses and regular reload bonuses that change quite frequently. Because of this, it is best to check with individual online casinos at time to see what promotions are currently available.
Online Gambling Laws in Connecticut
Connecticut legalized nearly every form of online gambling in 2021 with a law authorizing “online casino gaming, retail and online sports wagering, fantasy contests, keno, and online sale of lottery tickets.” The bill’s text further spells out an inclusive definition:
“(A) Slots, blackjack, craps, roulette, poker and video poker, bingo, live dealer and other peer-to-peer games and any variations of such games, and (B) any games authorized by the department, conducted over the Internet, including through an Internet web site or mobile device, through an electronic wagering platform that does not require a bettor to be physically present at a facility.”
In other words, the law was largely written to be inclusive of all forms of wagering, and to encourage and facilitate online gambling within the state, all of which is good news for bettors.
Under Connecticut General Statutes 53-278a, all forms of gambling not authorized by voters or the legislature are illegal. This applies equally to live and online forms of gambling.
Additionally, lawmakers passed PA 17-2 in 2017 to legalize and regulate daily fantasy sports. Under the law, operators must pay an annual $15,000 licensing fee and pay 10.5% of gross gaming revenue as taxes. Players must be 18 or older.
Land-based Casinos in Connecticut
Casinos are only legal on tribal land in Connecticut. There are two casinos in the state. One is at Foxwoods. It is operated by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation. The other is Mohegan Sun. It is operated by the Mohegan Tribe. A proposed Tribal Winds casino is approved but has yet to break ground while a lawsuit challenges the validity of the reservation.
All typical casino games are permitted at Connecticut’s casinos. This includes slots, video poker, keno, blackjack, craps, roulette, baccarat and proprietary table games. Off-track betting is legal at casinos, but sports betting has yet to launch. There are no bet limits at Connecticut casinos.
Casino Laws in Connecticut
Connecticut casinos were not created through a constitutional amendment, which is normally the process for it. Instead, the state’s tribes took advantage of a charity gaming regulation that allowed for casino nights. The Mashantucket Pequots attempted to negotiate a gaming pact with Connecticut in 1988. In 1990, the tribe sued the state for refusing to enter a pact.
Foxwoods opened in 1992 with table games, pursuant to charitable gaming that allowed these forms of gambling. There is no tax on any revenue earned at tables at the state’s casinos. In 1993, the state and the Mashantucket Pequots agreed to a 25 percent tax rate on slots and video poker. This rises to 30 percent if gross gaming revenue falls below $100 million in a fiscal year.
The casinos are entirely on tribal land. This means that the state’s smoking ban does not apply to the facilities. Players must be at least 21 years of age.
Sports Betting in Connecticut
Retail sportsbooks and online sports betting sites are legal and regulated in Connecticut. The Mashantucket Pequots, Mohegans, and state lottery received authorization to offer sports betting in 2021.
Three Connecticut sports betting sites operate in partnership with tribal gaming operators or the state lottery:
- DraftKings Sportsbook with the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation
- FanDuel Sportsbook with Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment
- SugarHouse Sportsbook with the Connecticut Lottery
Sports Betting Laws in Connecticut
Connecticut legalized sports betting in 2021 by renegotiating its gaming compacts with the state’s two tribal casino operators. Negotiations resulted in amended gaming compacts that authorize tribal groups and the state lottery to offer online sports betting and retail sportsbooks.
Poker in Connecticut
Connecticut legalized online poker in 2021 via HB 6451. Under the law, each of the state’s tribal gaming operators may operate one online gambling and poker site.
One major hurdle that Connecticut’s online poker operators will have to overcome is its population of just 3.5 million. The state’s two poker rooms at Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun are among the largest on the east coast, but benefit from Connecticut’s proximity to many other densely populated metropolitan areas. Online poker is unlikely to attract that traffic on a regular basis in the same way, especially as New Jersey and Pennsylvania both have legalized online poker.
Because of this, the best route for Connecticut’s online poker sustainability is to enter into a shared liquidity deal such as the current one between New Jersey, Nevada, and Delaware. Should Michigan and/or Pennsylvania also join, the pressure for Connecticut to launch should grow even quicker.
Connecticut Poker Rooms
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- Connecticut Online Poker
Poker Laws in Connecticut
Live poker was legalized through the charitable casino night loophole. It did not require a change in law due to the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. The casinos do not pay taxes on poker revenue. Players must be at least 21 years of age.
Home Poker Games
Connecticut has an exemption from its gambling laws for social gaming, which includes home poker games and other forms of wagers made among friends. Code Chapter 946 Section 53-278a allows for form of gambling which are incidental to a bona fide social relationship. There are no limits on games or bet sizes under this exemption. The house may not take a rake. All games must be fair with participants having an equal chance of winning.
Fantasy Sports in Connecticut
Fantasy sports contests are legal in Connecticut. Several large fantasy sports operators accept players from the state. College and professional events are allowed. Contest entries may be made on mobile apps or websites. Fantasy prop bets are not permitted.
Fantasy Sports Laws in Connecticut
Daily Fantasy Sports has been legal since 2017 when a specific DFS bill was passed to ensure the state received proper fees and taxes from operators and players alike. However, the new law restricts the number of operators allowed in the state, bringing the number down to just three.
Thus, Foxwoods (DraftKings), Mohegan Sun (FanDuel), and the CT Lottery are the only operators eligible for licenses.
The Connecticut Lottery operates several games of chance. These include instant games, lotto drawings and keno. Instant scratch-off tickets are sold in prices from $1 to $30. Keno tickets are sold in amounts from $1 to $20. The drawings are held every four minutes from 5am to 2am daily.
The Connecticut Lottery sells tickets to eight lotto drawings. Three are in interstate pools. The other five are operated by the Connecticut Lottery.
Interstate Connecticut Lotto Drawings
- Lucky for Life
- Mega Millions
Intrastate Connecticut Lotto Drawings
- Play 3
- Play 4
- Cash 5
- Lucky Links
Connecticut Lottery Laws
The Connecticut Lottery was created in June 1971 through Public Act 865. The first tickets were sold on February 15, 1972. It was the fourth state lottery in the country.
The Connecticut Lottery is permitted to sell tickets to games of chance. These include instant games, as well as lotto and keno drawings. Players must be at least 18 years of age.
Bets on horseraces are permitted in Connecticut. These may be made at live races, off-track betting parlors and on mobile apps. TVG, TwinsSpires and BetAmerica all accept players from Connecticut. While live racing is legal in the state, there are no active tracks. There has never been a live horse track in the state since racing betting was legalized in 1971. Jai alai operated from 1975 until 2005. Greyhound racing tracks ran from 1976 to 2005.
The off-track betting parlors are at Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun casinos, as well as 14 off-track betting parlors operated by Sportstech. These are in taverns throughout the state.
Connecticut Racing Laws
Pari-mutuel betting on jai alai, as well as horse and greyhound racing, was legalized in 1971. It is regulated by the Gaming Division under Chapter 226 of Connecticut code. Off-track betting, the only way to bet races these days in the state, was legalized in 1976. Mobile betting was approved through the Horseracing Act. Off-track bettors must be at least 18 years of age.
Connecticut Skill-based Gaming Laws
Gambling is defined in Connecticut as placing money on an outcome that is contingent on chance. This leaves the door open for many games where the game is contingent on skill. Examples include chess, checkers, duplicate card games and individual athletic skill performances.
Like most states, eSports are not addressed under the state’s gambling laws. Participants and friends making wagers on these events would fall under skill gaming and social gaming exclusions. A bookmaking service taking action on these events would be illegal under Connecticut law.
Traditional Games of Skill
Traditional skill gaming sites do not think the sweepstakes law in Connecticut allows its products. You will not be able to play for real money at these sites as none accept players from the state.
Skill-based Gaming Machines
Skill-based gaming machines may only be played for cash prizes at Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun. Arcades may offer the games for prizes.
Connecticut Charity Gambling Law
Registered Connecticut charities may offer bingo, raffle and ticket games to raise funds. Charities wishing to hold a gaming event must be licensed for it through the Charitable Games Section of the Gaming Division. This law was created in 1939 to include bingo. Raffles were added in 1955, with sealed envelop prize pools legalized n 1987.
Las Vegas-style casino nights were legalized in 1972. It was repealed in 2003 during a failed attempt to quash tribal gaming expansion. Casino nights were used as the existing gaming that allowed Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun to offer live table games without paying any taxes.
Connecticut Gaming Regulator Directory
Connecticut Problem Gambling Resources
Gambling should always be done in a safe and responsible manner. Should you find yourself or a loved one unable to gamble responsibly, you can feel safe reaching out to a number of different options.
- The Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling is available 24 hours a day through their website, by calling (888) 789-7777, or texting “CTGAMB” to 53342.
- National Council on Problem Gambling
- Calling 1-800-GAMBLER toll-free anytime, nationwide
- Local Gamblers Anonymous Chapters
- Gam-Anon and Gamtalk