What You Need to Know About a Kentucky Online Casino in 2024

Sports lovers and horse racing enthusiasts probably know Kentucky best for its Derby. While horse racing betting, both online and in-person, is legal, the same can’t be said about online casino games using real money. Unfortunately, you can’t play Kentucky online casinos with real money legally, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t other ways to enjoy online gambling!

One of the best ways to enjoy casino gambling is through sweepstakes casinos that are legal in the state. Whether you want to play games, participate in the state lottery, or want to know what Kentucky casinos are available for in-person live dealer games, we’ve got you covered! Here is everything you need to know about betting on sportsbooks and racing, Daily Fantasy Sports, and so much more. Keep an eye out for changing laws, which will hopefully bring online casino apps, online slots, and other fun gaming options to the state soon.

The Best Online Casino Offers in Kentucky

United States
Kentucky, United States
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Kentucky Online Gambling Laws

Online gambling is a favorite pastime for many Americans, and with states like New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Michigan allowing residents to play online casino games legally, it’s no wonder residents continue to wonder when Kentucky online gambling will be made legal.

Unfortunately, Kentucky online casinos using real money are currently outlawed, thanks to strict laws that make it a class A misdemeanor to even possess a gambling device. Because of strict laws against online casino gambling, people are looking for ways to play casino games legally in the state. And they find them!

Fortunately, casino games can still be enjoyed through social and sweepstakes casinos. In addition, you can also enjoy gambling on sports teams, Daily Fantasy Sports, and horse racing online. All of these options are currently legal according to Kentucky online casino laws, as long as you meet the legal gambling age of 18 years old.

If you want to gamble online using real money or want to play slot games without fear of losing your funds, it’s best to pick trusted social casinos until laws change. There are also, unfortunately, no land-based casinos in the state that offer table games.

How does Kentucky Regulate Gambling?

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission is responsible for regulating gambling in the state. The commission ensures that not only are gambling laws being met, but that fair play is ensured for everyone participating in online sports betting, online KY casinos, instant racing machines, and, of course, horse racing.

Additionally, the commission also works to promote responsible gambling practices and provide support for those struggling with problem gambling. It regulates casino gaming, despite there being no table games available. This is because casinos are allowed to offer slot machines and instant racing machines under Kentucky law, as long as they obtain a license from the commission and adhere to strict regulations. Now that online gambling in the state includes sports wagering, it’s also the commission’s responsibility to regulate and oversee it.

Lottery games are actually unique in that the Kentucky Lottery Corporation is responsible for regulating them, rather than the Horse Racing Commission. The corporation oversees all forms of lottery gaming in the state, including scratch-off tickets and multi-state games like Powerball and Mega Millions.

Online Casino Gambling in Kentucky

Kentucky residents who want to play slots, live casino games, progressive jackpots, and table games can only do so through sweepstakes casinos. These online casinos operate using a sweepstakes model, which allows players to purchase virtual currency for the chance to win real cash prizes. While not technically considered gambling, as no money is wagered directly, these sweepstakes casinos provide Kentucky residents with a way to play their favorite casino games legally.

As of now, there are no bills or legislation in place that would make online gambling legal in Kentucky. However, with the growing popularity of online sports betting and the potential for increased revenue, lawmakers may consider expanding into other forms of online gambling in the future.

For online casino gambling to become legalized in Kentucky, it would require a change in state law and approval from the Horse Racing Commission or another regulatory body. Until then, residents can continue to enjoy the variety of casino games offered by sweepstakes casinos. They can also enjoy horse racing and the lottery which are currently the most popular legal forms of gambling in the state.

Kentucky Online Poker

Like other table games which are outlawed online and in-person, online poker is not legal in the state. However, you can enjoy playing online poker at social casinos, which operate on a similar sweepstakes model. These sites allow you to purchase virtual currency for the chance to win real cash prizes through luck of the draw sweepstakes!

Kentucky Daily Fantasy Sports

House Bill 259 was passed in 2018, legalizing Daily Fantasy sports in Kentucky. This allows for residents to use popular platforms such as FanDuel and DraftKings, where users create Fantasy teams based on real players and compete against other users for cash prizes. These platforms have gained popularity in recent years and offer an alternative form of online casinos for Kentucky residents.

Kentucky Sports Betting

As of September 2023, sports betting has become legal in Kentucky. This means people can use online sportsbooks to place bets on their favorite professional or college sports teams. This includes popular leagues such as the NFL, NBA, MLB, and NHL. Popular online sportsbooks also offer live betting, allowing users to bet on games as they are happening. Sites include popular names such as BetMGM, traditionally known for its casino sites, DraftKings, and FanDuel.

Kentucky Online Horse Betting

Home of the Kentucky Derby, it’s no wonder there’s a big market for online horse racing betting. Residents can use sites such as TwinSpires and TVG to place bets on races happening all over the country. These sites also offer live streaming of races, giving users the full experience of being at the track from the comfort of their own homes. In-person horse betting is also legal in the state at various racetracks and off-track betting facilities.

Kentucky Lottery

From Powerball to Mega Millions to scratch-offs, the Kentucky Lottery offers a variety of games for residents looking to test their luck. The Lottery helps fund education and other programs in the state, making it a popular choice among residents who want to support their community while also having a chance to win big. The KLC, or Kentucky Lottery Corporation, also has a mobile app and online gambling site that allows users to play games and check winning numbers.

Kentucky Land Based Casinos

There are currently no land-based casinos in Kentucky. Fortunately, several racing tracks offer slot machines and other electronic games. These include Churchill Downs, Keeneland, and Kentucky Downs.

History of Gambling Legislation in Kentucky

In 1787, Lexington, KY, became the first city to have documented horse racing in the state, with a rich history to follow soon after. The first horse racing track would open in 1875, setting off a tradition that has become synonymous with the state.

In 1988, Kentucky voted for the introduction of a state lottery, with the proceeds going towards different state programs. This bill passed with a 60% vote, showing strong support from residents.

Gambling laws and devices continue to develop, and in 2011, the first instant horse racing machines were installed at Kentucky Downs. These machines operate similarly to slot machines, but their legality is still debated today.

Finally, in 2023, sports betting was legalized in Kentucky, with online options becoming increasingly popular today. While Kentucky casinos online aren’t still legal, perhaps they will soon be part of this history.

FAQ

What is the gambling age in Kentucky?

Kentucky is unique in allowing 18-year-olds to participate in pari-mutuel betting on horse races and sports betting. This is slightly younger than the 21-year-old legal gambling age in other states where the restriction is imposed on casinos and sports betting.

Who regulates gambling in Kentucky?

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission is responsible for regulating all horse racing and pari-mutuel betting in the state. The Kentucky Lottery Corporation oversees the state lottery, and the Kentucky Department of Charitable Gaming manages bingo and other charitable games.

Are Kentucky online casinos legal?

Yes, real-money online casinos are not legal. The state has strict laws against online gambling, and there are no licensed online casinos available to residents. However, social casinos, which offer free-to-play casino games, are legal and accessible.

Can I win real money at online casinos in Kentucky?

The only way to win real money at an online casino in this state is by playing at a reputable sweepstakes or social casino. To win cash prizes, you’ll need to purchase gold coins or sweepstakes currency, which can then be used to play casino games or enter contests with real cash prizes. The best online casinos will have ample opportunities to win cash prizes.

Are gambling winnings taxable in Kentucky?

Yes, all gambling winnings in the state are taxable, whether they are won at a casino, gambling sites, or through other forms of gambling. Gambling income is considered taxable by both state and federal tax agencies. It is important to report all winnings on your tax returns to avoid potential penalties and fees. Even if not withheld, it’s important to save a portion of winnings over $5,000 for tax purposes.

When will online casinos be legal in Kentucky?

While recent legislation has legalized sports betting in the state, there are currently no plans to legalize online casinos. Any changes to the laws regarding online gambling would require approval from state legislators and likely face opposition from various groups.

Veronica Foster Written by Veronica Foster

I’m a seasoned gambler with a decade of experience in games like blackjack and roulette, and a particular fondness for slot machines. Now, as a writer for iGaming IQ Inc and Lucky Gambler, I use my expertise to educate others on smart, responsible betting, winning strategies, and choosing the best online casinos.

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