Gambling & Crypto Writer
In a recent turn of events, the U.S. State of Wyoming has decided to legalize online sports betting, allowing gambling participants in the state to place their wagers using cryptocurrencies. The move is the latest among several legislations passed in the state in the last couple of years, aimed at boosting the state’s cryptocurrency industry.
Wyoming has been one of the accepting and encouraging states in the US when it comes to cryptocurrencies, becoming one of the first states in the country to allow cryptocurrency deposits in online gambling.
The new law introduced by Wyoming will make the state one of the most open online marketplaces in the country and the second only state to legalize online-only wagering after Tennessee. The new legislation, known as house bill 133 has been signed by Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon. The law will come into effect on the 1st of September, 2021. As a result of the new law, gamblers in the state can now legally fund their accounts using cryptocurrencies.
Article 1 of Wyoming’s state legislation already that cryptocurrencies can be used in place of cash. This means that there are no legal limitations on individuals using that cash for online sports betting. The new law also allows gamblers to use traveller’s and cashier’s checks and credit cards to fund their accounts when they use a registered online sports wagering platform.
Compared to the whole country, Wyoming has fairly friendly cryptocurrency laws. This helps the state compete with the likes of Delaware when business advantage is concerned. Cryptocurrencies, in general, have been largely spared by the state’s legal scanners since 2018. CEO of Avanti Financial Group, Caitlin Long, even called Wyoming more friendly towards blockchain-based companies than Delaware. The state has passed a fintech sandbox bill back in 2019, which lets blockchain-based startups test new technologies and determine their functionality within existing regulatory frameworks.
Despite this, there is a growing concern among various iGaming operators who are especially worried about the unpredictable and unstable nature of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. When a gambler bets using a cryptocurrency and the bet is successful, the betting operator is required to pay out the original bet plus whatever the winning amount adds up to. This is one of the reasons many sportsbooks have gone out of business, making sports betting an extremely unpredictable activity.
Gambling in the United States using cryptocurrencies is a legal issue that frequently comes up, made even more complicated by conflicting state and federal laws. Some states like Alaska, Indiana, Connecticut, Maryland and Kentucky outright ban online gambling using cryptocurrencies, while other states like Wyoming and Delaware have legalized online gambling.
States that have complicated laws such as Connecticut regarding virtual currencies, can slap legal action on individuals found engaging in crypto-sports betting. Interested individuals should always consult their local laws and other rules before engaging in such activity.