The state of Massachusetts joins its New England counterparts in shedding part of their more-puritanical roots and warming up to the idea of legal gambling – with the 2011 signing of the Expanded Gaming Act; which may at some point in the near future allow for online casino gaming, poker, and sports betting to make its entrance. For the time being, people in MA enjoy their land-based casinos, slots, poker, and table games; fantasy sports, horse racing, online games of skill, and the state lottery.
MA Legal Gambling History
Like other New England states, legal forms of gambling has been frowned upon in Massachusetts for a long time (aside from race track betting and state lottery). This has all been changing though in recent times. MA has been a state—like others in the region—who have embraced the idea of legal horse track betting a state lottery system early on. The state formally legalized its horse betting in 1934 and jumped onto the state lottery in 1972.
For a long time—up until 2011, that is—the state of MA didn’t really see much progress in legalizing other forms of gambling; though this wasn’t for a lack of trying. The states Expanded Gaming Act that passed that year made legal for 3 casinos to open and operate in Massachusetts.
Because of the 2011 Expanded Gaming Act, gaining support, and interest; it may be entirely possible that we’ll see other forms of gambling become legal in the state of Massachusetts at some point in the future.
MA Gambling Legal Status
In Massachusetts, it is legal for those 21 years of age and older to play at brick and mortar casinos. For the lottery, bingo, and other charitable games the player must be at least 18 years old to participate.
MA Retail Casinos
In a relatively short period of time, Massachusetts has become a casino friendly state. Since 2011 we’ve seen 8 casinos go up and running. MA casinos are home to over 10,000 slots, 433 table games, and 151 poker tables.
Some of the physical locations you can hit while in Massachusetts include:
- Encore Boston Harbor
- Project First Light Casino
- Plainridge Park Casino
- MGM Springfield
- Aquinnah Cliffs
MA Online Casinos and Sportsbooks
At this time neither online casinos or sportsbooks are legal in the state of Massachusetts. But as the state beginning to warm up to the idea of legal gambling, growing political support, and interest; legalizing sports betting and online casino gambling very well could be a possibility for Massachusetts in the future.
MA Legal Gambling FAQ’s
What is legal for me to bet on in the state of MA?
It is legal in the state of Massachusetts to legally bet at retail casinos; which include slots, poker, and table games. Daily fantasy sports, games of skill, charitable games, race betting, and the state lottery are all also legal in Massachusetts.
What are the requirements and restrictions for legal gambling in the state of MA?
In the state of Massachusetts, it is legal for players who are 21 years of age and older to play at casinos. People in MA who are at least 18 years of age can participate in the state lottery, bet on racing, and play bingo.
Will there ever be legal online casinos and sports betting in the state of MA?
It is certainly a possibility. We efforts being made and increasing interest and political support, it seems likely for the state of Massachusetts.
Based on what we’ve seen in other states, you can be certain that DraftKings and FanDuel are just waiting to tap this market.