The internet can be a lot of fun. One of the ways to relax and unwind online is with online gambling. But are online casinos like the well-known gclub site legal?

Yes, online casinos are legal

For the most part, online gambling is legal for Americans. This is the case whether the online casino is based in the United States or elsewhere. There are a few exceptions however, and it’s important to keep in mind that foreign casinos may not be regulated or monitored in the same ways as casinos in the United States.

U.S. laws

There isn’t any law that specifically bans online betting in the United States. For a while, some people surmised that the Wire Act of 1961 covered online bets and made them illegal. However, in 2002, the fifth circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals decided the case of Thompson v. MasterCard.

A man brought the case against MasterCard after losing significant money betting online. In the Thompson case, the court ruled that the Wire Act only applies to internet sports gambling. In addition, a 2011 memo from the Department of Justice clarified that the Act only applies to online sports betting.

State laws

Because there’s no U.S. law that prohibits online gambling, using the internet to gamble in the U.S. is only illegal if state law prohibits it. In most states, online gambling is perfectly legal.

One state that prohibits online gambling and all gambling is Utah. They define gambling as risking anything of value. Under state law, anyone who participates in gambling is guilty of breaking the law. This applies to both online gambling and gambling physically within the state of Utah.

Check with your state’s laws before you gamble

Some states allow gambling only on Native American reservations. Others allow it everywhere, and still others ban the practice completely. It’s important to know your state laws before you make a decision about whether to gamble.

Prosecutions for online gambling are not very common. Many times, there’s no reason that the activity would come to law enforcement’s attention. Even so, if you’re prosecuted you can receive fines and potential jail time.

Sports betting online is illegal

Even though general online casinos may be legal in many states, online sports betting is not legal. Federal law agrees that the Wire Act of 1961 prohibits online sports betting under any circumstance. Despite online sports betting remaining legal in other countries, it’s illegal to bet on sports online in the United States.

Online advertising for online casinos

Despite the federal authorities ruling that online casinos are legal if they’re not prohibited by state law, some internet search engines don’t allow advertising for online casinos. Google and Yahoo are two examples of companies that have chosen at various times not to allow this type of advertising. Today, both companies allow ads or online gaming on a restricted basis. To advertise for off-shore, online gambling on Google, you must obtain a special certification, and you may not target the ads towards minors. However, the company allows advertising for brick-and-mortar casinos in the United States without any special certification or requirements.