Is Poker legal in North Dakota (nd)? Online Poker Laws in North Dakota Explained
Table Of Contents
- Live Poker is allowed
- Online Poker is forbidden
- Online Casino is forbidden
- Sports Betting is forbidden
Can You Play Online Poker in North Dakota?
Right now you cannot, but there was a lot of movement in 2021.
On Tuesday, February 24, 2021, the North Dakota House of Representatives passed Rep. Jim Kasper’s House Concurrent Resolution 3012 by a vote of 54-40. The bill sought to pose a question – whether or not citizens want online poker – on the November 2022 general election ballot. However, the Senate unanimously voted down the resolution shortly after.
In addition, Representatives passed House Concurrent Resolution 3032 by a vote of 70-24. That resolution sought to put the issue of sports betting on the general ballot. The Senate also voted down that resolution.
Traditionally, North Dakota has been resistant to gaming expansion. For instance, they resisted a state lottery for 12 years prior to approving one in 2002. Similarly, the idea of online poker in North Dakota was first introduced by Rep. Kasper 16 years ago but ultimately failed due to concerns regarding the Wire Act, concerns that are no longer applicable after a recent court ruling.
With politicians have been split on the issue and essentially in a stalemate, lawmakers have decided to let the voters decide.
“There are thousands of people in the state of North Dakota who are playing online poker. It’s not regulated. It’s not taxed. We don’t know for sure if the machines are fair or not because we don’t know anything about it,” Rep. Kasper said during a brief discussion prior to the house vote.
Also passing was House Bill 1389, which provided the framework on how to license online poker in the state if voters do in fact want it. According to that bill, the attorney general would be responsible for licensing and regulation. There would be a paltry $10,000 one-time licensing fee with an annual renewal fee of $5,000.
Here are some other details highlighted in House Bill 1389:
- Players would be required to be 21 years or older to play online poker.
- A tax of 10 percent of adjusted gross proceeds to be paid on a monthly basis
- A fund would be established with 10 percent of annual transfers from internet poker benefitting problem gamblers, 50 percent to support schools,
- Poker games listed in the bill include Texas hold’em, Omaha, Omaha high/low, draw, stud, low ball, and “any combination of these games, or any other similar poker game.”
Current North Dakota Gambling Laws
Licensed horse racing and dog racing are allowed in North Dakota, as is betting on race simulcasts and pari-mutuel wagering. The state was somewhat of a latecomer when it came to introducing a lottery, finally doing so in 2004. Meanwhile, lawmakers in the traditionally conservative state have begun to consider sports betting, with the House passing a bill in early 2019.
Two types of casinos are allowed in the state, those that are Native American-owned on reservations, and nonprofit "charitable gaming" casinos allowed to offer a variety of gambling games (though no slot machines.)
Numerous small poker rooms can be found at each type of establishment, such as at the Sky Dancer Casino in Belcourt and Spirit Lake Casino in St. Michael.
Best Online Poker Sites for North Dakota Players
None at present. But you can always play poker for free with the WSOP Social App.