Pennsylvania Gambling Regulations: What’s Legal And What’s Not

Before starting to explore gambling in Pennsylvania and what it has to offer, it’s best to double-check the legality of it to avoid getting in trouble with the local authorities. This is the exact reason why we’ve decided to write this post – our aim is to give you a rundown of Pennsylvania gambling laws and outline what you need to know. Let’s delve right into it.

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Is Gambling Legal In Pennsylvania?

The short answer is yes! The reason being is, according to, Pennsylvania gambling laws are written in such a way that individuals can freely gamble without fear of facing legal consequences for it. Although there are not that many local PA gambling sites to choose from to date, there are no legal barriers to playing at an off-shore site if you so choose.

The One Bill That Changed It All

In 2017, the Pennsylvania Senate approved a major expansion of legal gambling, and it became the fourth state that legalized online gambling. In 2018, another major court decision took place that overturned 1992’s federal ban on sports betting known as PASPA, declaring it unconstitutional.

Land-Based Casinos In PA

Currently, land-based casino gambling in Pennsylvania is limited to 13 establishments. Given how things have been going in the pro-gambling direction, many business deals are already on the way, so gamblers can expect additional options to choose from in the not-too-distant future.

Sports Betting In PA

Ever since sports betting became legal as per Pennsylvania gambling laws, the last obstacle has fallen for sports enthusiasts to take part in their favorite hobby. Any PA gambling establishment that currently holds a slots casino license is welcome to apply for a suitable one for sports betting, which is the majority of land-based casinos in PA.

Daily Fantasy Sports In PA

Pennsylvania gambling laws specify a different set of rules for Daily Fantasy Sports like fantasy football compared to other ways to gamble online. For starters, you don’t need to establish a partnership with another provider as an operator and unlike other gambling entities that are taxed 36% on their overall revenue, the tax is only 15%. As a player, you’re free to participate in this gambling format.

Lotteries In PA

Lotteries are a traditional form of gambling in Pennsylvania. In fact, the tradition stretches back to the year of 1972 when the first ticket was purchased. As a lottery player in PA, you have the freedom to choose between various formats, including Mega Millions, Powerball, Xpress Sports, scratch-offs, Treasure Hunt, and others. If you don’t feel like purchasing a ticket at one of the brick & mortar stores, there is also the option of playing online.

Bingo In PA

In 1988, lawmakers passed an act that made playing Bingo games easily accessible all across Pennsylvania. As for their online counterparts, Pennsylvania gambling laws treat them in a similar manner to video poker and slots. This means you can expect more websites that offer Bingo games soon, considering that licensing fees aren’t exactly a barrier to entry (qualifying non-profit organizations can pay as little as $100).

An Overview Of Gambling In Pennsylvania

Land-based casinos and racetracks are a common sight in PA, which means you won’t have trouble finding traditional casino games like poker and slot machines. In a similar vein, the same holds true for betting on horse races. Since Pennsylvania has its own state-run lottery, that’s another gambling format you can avail yourself of.

The online PA gambling space used to be much tougher to access, but things have slowly been moving in the right direction ever since 2017 when Pennsylvania passed a pro-gambling bill. In the meantime, you can access plenty of off-shore gambling websites if you find the local online offerings are not to your satisfaction, and the state won’t penalize you for it.

As far as accessibility goes, most websites allow for multiple payment methods, including wire transfers and credit cards. However, don’t be surprised to find that your withdrawal might be limited to the same payment method you used to deposit your funds (this is in place for security purposes). For land-based gambling in Pennsylvania, you can pay at the counter as usual. It’s not hard to find a racetrack in PA where you can place a bet.


Ever since 2017, things have gradually been improving for PA-based gambling enthusiasts. The land-based gambling scene is alive and kicking. Soon, many online-based providers will join in, so keep your eyes peeled for any newcomers to the scene. At any rate, gambling in PA is completely legal as of right now, so feel free to explore the options available.

Disclaimer: Never play for more than you can afford to lose. Gambling can lead to a serious addiction. Gamble responsibly.

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