Historically New Hampshire has been stand-off-ish to the idea of letting legal gambling in its doors, but in recent times we are seeing this change ever-so-slightly. As the “Live Free or Die” state starts to live up to its name (as far as gambling is concerned) and legalize sports betting; both in-person and online.
While this isn’t the most exciting state for legal gambling, there is a lot of action around the recent legalization of sportsbooks and their near-future arrivals. Some acclaimed names in sports betting are making their way into the Granite State, such as FanDuel, DraftKings, PointsBet and RushStreet.
NH Legal Gambling History
While New Hampshire has only begun to allow legalized forms of gambling to enter its borders—albeit, with tough restriction—its roots in legal gambling go a long way back. The lottery in the state, before there was even a lottery (or a state)–took place in NH in the 1800s in form of a raffle. But speaking of the lottery, NH was the first state to legalize the lottery back in 1963.
Even before that, NH saw race track betting become legal in 1933; pretty much on par with other states as far as timing goes.
When we saw PASPA lifted on a federal level, we also saw New Hampshire consider giving legalized forms of gambling a try. The state passed a bill that same year allowing for up to ten retail sportsbooks to operate as well as five online sportsbooks. Sports betting won’t be tied to any brick and mortar casinos, since there are none in New Hampshire. Instead, the states lottery commission will oversee all sports betting.
NH Gambling Legal Status
The legal age to gamble in New Hampshire is 18. Unfortunately, we’re not left with too many options after that. In New Hampshire, we’ll start to see the sportsbooks go live, both retail and online, by 2020. Those 18 and older are also welcome to partake in the state’s lottery.
NH Retail Sportsbooks and Online Sports Betting
With recent legislation and the lift of the Professional and Amateur Sports Participation Act (PASPA), the once cold towards gambling state has allowed for sportsbooks to operate legally in New Hampshire. The recent 2019 bill called for up to 10 retail sportsbooks to operate in NH and 5 mobile sportsbooks, with the entire industry controlled by the NH State Lottery Commission.
While legal, we still haven’t seen the sportsbooks go live just yet. Initially, it was planned for a release before the 2019 NFL season. As that came and went, the plan for sports betting to go live in New Hampshire is now set for 2020. As the excitement for those 18 and older in NH stirs up, big names in sports betting are set to go live, including:
- Rush Street Interactive (the company behind the famed SugarHouse and BetRivers brands)
- Watch for DraftKings and FanDuel to join the ranks in NH.
NH Legal Gambling FAQ’s
What forms of gambling can I play legally in the state of NH?
As it stands, gambling is extremely limited in New Hampshire. Players in NH can participate in the state’s lottery and bet on sports and racing either at retail locations or online.
What are the requirements and restrictions of legal gambling in NH?
For all forms of gambling within the state of NH, the legal age is 18 years and older.
When can we expect to see the sportsbooks launch in NH?
Sportsbooks in New Hampshire are setting up to go live in 2020. You can play DFS in the state currently.
Updated: March 1, 2020 — You can create a Draftkings NH account if you live in New Hampshire.