Legal Oklahoma Gambling

Oklahoma Gambling

Oklahoma has a diverse range of legal gambling options. It all began in 1982 with horse racing. Ten years later, charitable gaming was approved by voters. In 2004, ballot initiatives that authorized tribal casinos and a state lottery passed.

Legal online gambling in Oklahoma is limited to horse racing betting via websites and mobile apps that are open to customers 18 or older. Daily fantasy sports sites are tolerated but not expressly legal, and the same goes for games of skill played for money online.

Overview of Legal OK Gambling Options:

  • Horse racing betting: Trackside, off-track betting parlors (OTBs) and online
  • Lottery: Scratch-off and lotto sales at retailers
  • Slots, video poker and table games: Only on tribal land
  • Bingo and raffles: Only at registered charities
  • Poker: At tribal casinos
  • Daily fantasy sports: Not regulated, but major DFS sites accept Oklahomans

Legal Oklahoma Gambling Sites

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21+ and present in OK. T&Cs Apply. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-522-4700.

Oklahoma Online Gambling

Mobile racing betting is the only form of online gambling that is expressly legal in Oklahoma. Major horse racing sites headquartered in the United States accept Oklahoma customers and offer wagering on horse races held around the country.

The best legal racing betting sites in Oklahoma include:

Daily fantasy sports sites also operate in Oklahoma, although it is debatable if we can fairly call such sites “gambling” considering the sizable skill element involved in daily fantasy. Wherever you stand on that whole debate, the big fantasy sites are all active in Oklahoma:

  • FanDuel
  • DraftKings

Oklahoma Online Gambling Law

Oklahoma gambling laws do not specifically mention online gambling, but there are good reasons to believe it is illegal to participate in unauthorized gambling.

21 OK Stat § 21-942 outlines a broad prohibition on participating in gambling:

“Any person who bets or plays at any of said prohibited games, or who shall bet or play at any games whatsoever, for money, property, checks, credits or other representatives of value with cards, dice or any other device which may be adapted to or used in playing any game of chance or in which chance is a material element, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof shall be punished by a fine of not less than Twenty-five Dollars ($25.00), nor more than One Hundred Dollars ($100.00), or by imprisonment in the county jail for a term of not less than one (1) day, nor more than thirty (30) days, or by both such fine and imprisonment.”

Although there is no specific mention of online gambling, it would not be a stretch to apply that law to an individual caught visiting an offshore sportsbook or poker site. Law enforcement seems to have other priorities, but speaking from a strictly legal sense, Oklahoma law is not friendly to unlicensed online gambling.

Oklahoma Casinos

Land-based casinos in Oklahoma are located on tribal territory and are operated by 31 different tribes. There are more than 130 casinos in operation across the state, ranging in size from small slot parlors to full-service destination resorts.

Currently, compacts between the state and each gaming tribe permit casinos to offer:

  • Electronic bingo games
  • Electronic amusement games
  • Electronic instant bingo games
  • Non-house-banked card games

According to the OK Gaming Compliance Unit, 34 of the state’s 38 federally-recognized tribes have gaming compacts with the state to operate Class III gaming. The Oklahoma casino industry is in great health today, with more than 72,000 slots and resort casinos housing more than 5,000 rooms across the state.

The National Indian Gaming Commission lists 142 total facilities in its most up-to-date list of Oklahoma casinos:

Oklahoma Tribal Casino Law

Tribal gaming came to Oklahoma in the early 90s in the form of Class II games (bingo, bingo machines and non-house-banked card games such as poker). Oklahoma casinos at the time were small operations compared to what they would become over the next two decades.

For instance, WinStar World Casino opened in 1991 as a bingo hall off Interstate 35. Eventually and with the help of expanded gaming, the humble bingo hall would grow to become what is now the self-proclaimed “World’s Biggest Casino” with nearly 400,000 square feet of gaming space, 8,500 slot machines, 100 table games, and a 55-table poker room.

Prior to 2004, tribal casinos could only offer Class II games under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) because Oklahoma did not offer other forms of gaming elsewhere. That changed in 2004 when voters approved State Question 712, which authorized the state to enter gaming compacts with tribal groups for Class III gaming.

Slots, video poker, table games, and live poker are now permitted at Oklahoma casinos. Table games require an ante and an outside banker. The ante for card games is $0.50. Craps requires a $1 ante with every come-out roll. Roulette has a $1 ante for each spin. Oklahoma casinos may not bank bets at its table games.

The original gaming compacts did not permit table games without cards. That changed in 2018 with the passage of SB 3375 authorizing dice and roulette games. Previously, these games were played electronically or with cards.

Tribal casinos pay ten percent in gross gaming revenue to the state on table games. For slots and video poker, casinos pay four percent on the first $10 million in gross gaming revenue, five percent on the next $10 million, and six percent on all slot revenues beyond that.

More recently, the state has pushed for tribal casinos to contribute a greater share of their profits to the state. In 2019, Governor Kevin Stitt proposed raising those fees to as high as 25% to put Oklahoma more in line with the rates paid by tribes in some other states.

The tribes disagree, of course, and have noted that the maximum rate in their compact (10%) puts them among the 92% of other gaming compacts across the nation with a rate in that general range or less.

Federal law requires tribes to have compacts in place with the state in order to offer Class III gaming, so both sides will eventually have to come to an agreement if Oklahoma is to keep its very large casino industry in place.

Oklahoma Sports Betting

Sports betting is prohibited in Oklahoma. Lawmakers have expressed some interest in changing that but so far have been unable to drum up the support needed to make a serious push at legalization.

The same bill that expanded tribal gaming to include craps and roulette also included language to authorize sports betting at one point, but that provision was removed prior to the passage of the bill.

Had it passed with sports betting language intact, SB 3375 would have allowed the state to renegotiate gaming compacts with the tribes to include sports betting. The bill did not offer details regarding where sports wagering would occur or if mobile betting would be permitted.

Any discussion of sports betting will have to include the tribes due to the wide-ranging gaming compacts that are in place. Tribal gaming has contributed more than $1.5 billion to the state since 2004 and now contributes well over $100 million per year to the state in return for having guaranteed exclusivity over certain forms of gaming.

With that much money at stake, the tribes will certainly play a role, one way or another, in how the sports betting issue plays out in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma Poker

Live poker is only permitted at casinos on reservations. There are 14 poker rooms in the state. These range from small poker rooms with just a few tables to one of the largest in the country. Cash games and tournaments are legal. Any game with rules on file may be dealt.

All Oklahoma casinos spread Texas Hold’em. Some spread versions of Omaha and mixed games.

Oklahoma Poker Rooms

Oklahoma Daily Fantasy Sports

Oklahoma law does not address daily fantasy sports (DFS) in one way or another, and no attorney general has issued an opinion on the legality of such games. Major DFS sites such as FanDuel and DraftKings operate openly in Oklahoma under the assumption their contests are considered games of skill.

To date, law enforcement has not moved to put an end to daily fantasy sports.

Oklahoma DFS Law

Oklahoma seems to have little appetite to formally legalize fantasy sports, partly due to opposition from local tribal groups.

The last serious effort to regulate DFS in Oklahoma came in 2016 with the introduction of HB 2278. That bill sought to create the Oklahoma Fantasy Contests Act, establish basic regulations for the industry and require operators to register with the Department of Consumer Credit.

Tribal groups successfully shot down the effort on the basis that legalizing fantasy sports would be akin to authorizing a new form of gambling without consulting the tribes. Chief Standing Bear of the Osage Nation put it this way in a press release announcing the successful defeat of the effort:

“Fantasy sports are online internet contests such as fantasy football leagues. Substantial money is played during these games and the proposed legislation of the State of Oklahoma would bring money to Oklahoma State Government and exclude the tribes.”

Since then, there have been no serious attempts to authorize or regulate fantasy sports in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma Lottery

The Oklahoma Lottery was established through legislative action in 2003 and a pair of ballot measures (State Questions 705 and 706) asking voters to approve the lottery and an accompanying education trust fund.

Voters overwhelmingly approved both measures to establish a state lottery. The OK Lottery sold its first tickets in 2005. For the fiscal year ending June 2006, the lottery sold nearly $205 million worth of tickets and transferred more than $65 million to the education trust fund.

Today, the lottery offers the following games:

Intrastate Lotto Games

  • Pick 3
  • Cash 5
  • Instant win scratch cards

Interstate Lotto Drawings

  • Mega Millions
  • Powerball
  • Lotto America
  • Lucky for Life

Oklahoma Lottery Law

Under OK law, lottery tickets may only be purchased in person at authorized retailers. Customers must be 18 or older to play, and all purchases must be made with cash. Revenue generated by the lottery is appropriated as follows:

  • 45% to K-12 public education efforts
  • 45% to tuition grants, loans, and scholarships for OK citizens to attend in-state universities
  • 5% to the Teachers’ Retirement System Dedicated Revenue Revolving Fund
  • 5% to the School Consolidation and Assistance Fund

Oklahoma Horse Racing Betting

Parimutuel horse racing betting is legal in Oklahoma, and three tracks are in operation today. In addition to trackside betting, residents may bet on horse races held elsewhere via simulcasting and mobile betting apps.

Active Race tracks in Oklahoma

  • Remington Park: Thoroughbred racing August-December, quarter horse racing March-June, year-round simulcast wagering.
  • Will Rogers Downs: Thoroughbred racing March-May, quarter horse racing September-November, year-round simulcast wagering.
  • Fair Meadows at Expo Square: Live racing June-July, year-round simulcast wagering six days a week (closed Tuesdays).

Off-Track Betting is also offered at the following locations:

  • Thunder Roadhouse: 900 W Memorial Rd, Oklahoma City, OK 73114
  • Riverwind Casino: 1544 W Hwy 9, Norman, OK 73072
  • Newcastle Casino: 2457 Hwy 62 Service Road, Newcastle, OK 73065
  • Southwind Casino: 9625 US-177, Braman, OK 74632
  • WinStar Casino: 777 Casino Ave, Thackerville, OK 73459
  • Choctaw Casino Durant: 4216 S Hwy 69/75, Durant, OK 74701
  • Choctaw Casino Pocola: 3400 Choctaw Rd, Pocola, OK 74092

Oklahoma Horse Racing Laws

The Oklahoma horse racing industry was established through State Question 553 in 1982, which was approved by 58% of the voting public.

Horse racing and parimutuel wagering are overseen today by the Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission.

Legislation regarding the conduct of horse racing and parimutuel wagering can be found at:

Oklahoma Esports Betting

Esports betting is not specifically addressed in the Oklahoma gambling laws.  One could fairly safely assume that betting between players would be legal. Spectators making wagers on these events would be in violation of state gaming laws.

Oklahoma Skill Games

Oklahoma clearly defines what it considers gambling by the types of games and devices that are illegal. The element of chance is only addressed in charitable gaming exceptions.

As noted under state code 21-941:

Except as provided in the Oklahoma Charity Games Act, every person who

   opens, or causes to be opened, or who conducts, whether for hire or

   not, or carries on either poker, roulette, craps or any banking or

   percentage, or any gambling game played with dice, cards or any

   device, for money, checks, credits, or any representatives of value,

   or who either as owner or employee, whether for hire or not, deals for

   those engaged in any such game, shall be guilty of a felony, and upon

   conviction thereof, shall be punished by a fine of not less than Five

   Hundred Dollars ($500.00), nor more than Two Thousand Dollars

   ($2,000.00), and by imprisonment in the State Penitentiary for a term

   of not less than one (1) year nor more than ten (10) years.

Oklahoma defines a bet as:

“A bargain in which the parties agree that, dependent upon chance, or in which one of the parties to the transaction has valid reason to believe that it is dependent upon chance, one stands to win or lose something of value specified in the agreement.”

This likely gives Oklahomans wide leeway for making skill-based wagers. Participants in athletic contests and other types of skill tournaments are free to enter with cash to win prizes, especially among other participants. Games of knowledge and professional competitions would also likely work under the law.

Online skill game sites such as WorldWinner are active in Oklahoma. Pure skill gaming sites manage to avoid falling afoul of the law by removing the element of chance from their paid competitions.

Skill-based gaming machines were first installed in Oklahoma casinos in 2017. The first property with the games was Choctaw Casino & Resort. These games may be offered by any Oklahoma casino.

Oklahoma Gambling Laws

Oklahoma permits a wide range of gambling to licensed entities. Charities may hold bingo games and raffles. Horseracing is legal live and for off-track betting. There is a state lottery. Tribes in the state may spread a full range of gambling, including slots, video poker, live poker, and table games.

The minimum gambling age in Oklahoma is 18 for most activities. This includes visiting casinos and placing wagers. Some casinos that serve alcohol may limit entry to customers 21 or older, while others may admit customers 18+ but issue wristbands to prevent them from ordering drinks.

The following agencies regulate gaming in Oklahoma:

Oklahoma Charitable Gaming

The Oklahoma Charity Games Act allows recognized charities to operate bingo, raffles, and pull-tabs contests. Charities must be licensed. This requires a $100 fee. Charities must be at least two years old and registered with the IRS and Oklahoma Alcoholic Beverage Laws Enforcement Commission. Charitable gaming players must be at least 18 years of age.

Oklahoma Gambling FAQ

Oklahoma Lottery jackpot winners may remain anonymous. This is done by creating a trust. The beneficiaries must be disclosed to the Oklahoma Lottery.

Most Oklahoma residents pay a five percent state income tax on gambling winnings. Out-of-state residents must file a state return on gambling winnings. The rates start at 0.5% and increase progressively in income increments around $2,500. The cap is 5%.

No. An attempt to legalize sports betting in the Oklahoma Legislature failed in 2019.

Poker is legal at the state’s tribal casinos.

Home Poker games are not legal in Oklahoma. This is true regardless of whether the house takes a rake or not. The state does not have a social gaming exclusion.

Oklahoma gambling law makes it clear that participating in a game or hosting a game in which luck plays a role, and money is exchanged constitutes illegal gambling.

There is no bet limit in Oklahoma casinos.

Yes. There is a fee of $0.50 for every table game hand with cards. Craps and roulette have a $1 ante.

Yes. These games were approved in 2018.

Slots, video poker, keno, electronic table games, blackjack, poker, and all other table games are legal at Oklahoma casinos.

Yes. All Oklahoma casinos are on tribal land.

Oklahoma does not have a statewide smoking ban. Even if it did, all casinos in the state are on tribal land and would not be covered by it.