When you think of Louisiana, your mind generally drifts to the very famous event that happens in April; Mardi Gras! Louisiana is definitely known for its rich food culture, legendary music scene, and one of the year’s biggest parties. So, you would naturally think that gambling would be part of the overall culture as well. Unfortunately, as of May 2021, online casinos have yet to become legal in the Pelican State.
Louisiana’s gambling history is quite interesting and stretches back hundreds of years. In fact, it actually predates the territory’s incorporation into the US. Did you know that gambling was so popular that when the US purchased the territory in 1803, New Orleans had more casinos than New York, Philadelphia, Boston, and Baltimore combined?! However, after Louisiana’s statehood became official, the state wavered back and forth on the legality of gambling.
Gambling has been mostly illegal in Louisiana for the last part of the century, but (and this is a big but) sports betting is rumored to be making a comeback in the near future, so it’s always wise to stay on top of what you can and can’t do to scratch your gambling itch if you live in or are visiting this southern state.
You made a wise decision visiting us today; read on to learn more about the legality of online gambling in the Pelican State, and bookmark this page to stay up to date on any pending changes in gambling laws.
As of May 2021, sadly, it is not legal to gamble anywhere online in the state of Louisiana. However, it is not for lack of trying. Still, due to some unforeseen circumstances and rulings within the state’s legislature regarding Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS), people living in Louisiana cannot scratch their gambling itches online.
Daily Fantasy Sports has made things quite complicated, as the residents in each parish of Louisiana wish to remain autonomous from one another. In fact, there was a state bill presented to each parish that would make DFS legal, but unsurprisingly, the parishes struck the bill down. It was this, plus online gambling companies like DraftKings and FanDuel would be required to have highly sophisticated geolocation software so that each parish could remain separate from the next. DFS has also delayed the legalization process due to its unordinary taxation approach. Basically, the government isn’t inclined to approve DFS in Louisiana unless the state is willing to promise the government will get a cut of the earnings, as most state governments want to reap the rewards from the revenue brought in by people placing bets online or at retail casino locations, the tax inclination isn’t uncommon.
From what we’ve heard (from reputable sources, of course), the government did approve the legalization of DFS at an 8% tax rate and have started accepting applications for DFS companies to come into the Louisiana market-- fingers crossed that it won’t be much longer until the great people of Louisiana can begin their DFS play. However, it is vital to keep in mind that DFS is only a tiny piece of the online gambling pie, so for people expecting online casinos and online sports betting to become legal should hold their horses and try to remain calm. Even though a majority of parishes approved land-based sports betting, there isn’t a drop-dead date when retail sportsbooks will begin popping up.
So, to sum up that very long-winded answer, no, online casinos are not yet legal in Louisiana.
However, if you really have a hankering to play online casino games in Louisiana, there is one exception--Sweeps Casinos. If you haven’t heard of free online Sweeps Casinos, live in Louisiana, and love playing casino-style games online, you must have been living under a rock. Sweeps casino sites offer players the opportunity to play games for real cash prizes without putting any of their hard-earned money on the line.
Sweeps Casinos like Chumba Casino, Global Poker, and LuckyLand Slots all operate under traditional sweepstakes laws, which means players aren’t required to make any purchases to participate. Sweeps Casinos are an excellent way to play your favorite slots, video poker, and table games, all online and for free!
The short answer is no. In fact, LA is actually one of the only states in the US to throw people in jail for participating in any form of online gambling (sans Sweeps Casinos). Moreover, there’s even a three-strike element to this stringent law. If you are caught gambling online for the third time, you may end up being branded a felon, and honestly, who wants that title next to their name? We don’t, and we definitely don’t want our readers to be known as such.
Louisiana’s legislation is so gung-ho on legalizing sports betting that the last time there was a push to bring online casinos to Louisiana was in 2018, and sadly, that bill died on the vine.
The good news here, though, is that you can still play in casino-like settings on Sweeps platforms. Yes, we know we’ve already mentioned this, but we feel like until online casinos are once and for all legal to play, Sweeps Casinos are the only way to go. Sweeps Casino site Global Poker is an excellent option for players that love trying their luck with a hand of Texas Hold’em. If you are more into slots, the Sweeps Casino site, Funzpoints, has what you’re looking for. Or if you like a little bit of this and a little bit of that, Chumba Casino is where it’s at. Chumba Casino has the most online casino-like experience, as it offers players casino-style slots and popular table games, including Blackjack, Roulette, and video poker.
Other than Sweeps Casinos, there is no legal way for Louisianans to gamble online without facing severe legal implications.
Try your best not to weep when we say, no, you cannot legally play poker online, and we mean this in the nicest way that it’s just not worth it to try. Louisiana is one of the most restricted states when it comes to online poker and is actually considered a crime if you participate in any poker game online. Please don’t be fooled by sites that say you can legally play poker online. You can’t. Period.
However, as we mentioned in the last section, you CAN legally play a few online poker variations at the Sweeps Casino, Global Poker. You can find No-Limit Texas Hold’em, Pot Limit Omaha, and a more unconventional type of Hold’em called Crazy Pineapple. And if that doesn’t sound fun, we don’t know what does! The best part is that you can still win real cash prizes without spending a dime. No, you probably won’t win as much as you might playing poker at an online casino, but hey, money is money.
Sadly, we’re not sure. Louisiana’s state legislature has been so hell-bent on passing the sports betting bill that they haven’t had a moment to continue considering passing the bill to make online casinos legal. Try your best not to fret; we still have reason to believe that Louisiana will reconsider and make online casino illegality a thing of the past.
Even though online casinos may not be legal, people residing and visiting the Pelican state can still legally participate in the following types of gambling:
Retail casino gambling
Home Poker games
Pari-mutuel betting on horse races
Sweeps Casino gaming
You may be cocking your head to the side, asking yourself, “wait, if online gambling isn’t legal, how can I play video poker?” The answer is simple; Louisiana has video poker-only lounges located throughout the state that you can visit, sit awhile, and play a few variations of video poker.
Unless you’re playing the lottery, betting on a horse race, playing online at a Sweeps Casino, or at a charity event where you must be 18 to participate, the legal gambling age in LA is 21.
Yes, they do! Louisiana has close to 30 retail casinos; most of them are riverboat casinos, and four are tribal casinos located on the Indian reservation land. A few of the most popular include:
Amelia Belle Casino
Boomtown Bossier City Casino
Eldorado Resort Casino
Golden Nugget Lake Charles Hotel & Casino